Tuesday, January 27, 2009

My absence explained

I found myself stranded up in the isolated north―I did not know where exactly, but my instincts told me Russia or Canada. My heroic plan to beat the shit out of Myoki had backfired. When I arrived at his cabin in my snow tire shod Alfa Romeo, he challenged me to a drinking contest, and I thought, Yes, this will be a snap, but I had forgotten that his stupidly tranquil face belies a three-bottle-of-Bombay-Saphire-a-day habit. The last thing I clearly remember is rolling up my sleeves and seeing the azure eyes of Helga peeking out from the corner. She looked frightened. I smiled smugly, pounded a triple, and thought, This one's for you baby.

But my smugness cowered and hid when the 5'4", pot-bellied Myoki chugged an entire bottle of Jagermeister and hurled it against the veneer wall of the cabin. He didn't even blink. After the shock of the shattered bottle settled, he looked me in the eyes and throatily whispered, "Go you masked gibbon."

The next two weeks are a haze--I remember mostly snow and airports--but I knew I had lost the battle and there will be no Hollywood ending. I found the following notes scribbled in my ostrich-skin travel journal, now covered in wine stains, which, I think, give it character congruent with the name stitched upon it.

- In my summer car, I angrily do donuts in the snow. I go until I crash.
- Visions of Helga's coquetry torture me in the hospital; I flirt with the nurse in exchange for hard analgesics.
- I am sore after drunkenly lifting weights in a stranger's basement. She sang awful karaoke to me in front of a hideous clock. There were glamour shots on the walls. I ducked out the window when she put her hand down my pants after Karma Chameleon.
- I have joined a committee on Style as a joke. They don't get it. I shall quit tomorrow.
- I escape from the hospital and spend a night in a forest. It is cold and I am frightened. A turtle is my only friend. I think he knows how to talk.

Miraculously and inexplicably, I am now home and attempting to resume normal life, but it is unnatural, like trying to live underwater. I am pretending it was all a dream, but of course, such willed deceit, not to mention talking turtles, can quickly send a man to the bughouse.


Arthur Cattersby said...

Such adventures, Nigel. You are truly a man who dares to live, or at least dream. I admire your courage.

kathy said...

Hello Dear Nigel! Like your mute turtle, you occupy your own taxonomic family it seems. What made you think that the turtle knew language?

Nigel Tewksbury said...

Hello my darling Kathy. I don't know exactly how to explain the talking turtle--it seemed so frighteningly real at the time, but logic and zoology deem this unlikely. I suppose it is the result of some misfiring in my brain. The last month has been hell, my dear. Hope you are well.