The Precious Life and Rambles of Liz Tattler

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      (And her struggles with editorial and cleaning staff anarchy)

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        Godfrey, what on earth are you mumbling about now, while that man is running around the grounds with a rubber duck in his hands! Please do focus on the matter at hand! He’s stumbled into the wrong thread, surely?”

        Elizabeth wrung her hands. “The characters are all running amok!”

        The Roberto story had been finished long ago ~ or had it?

        Finnley would know. But where was she?


          “Why do you suffer pain? You have compressed yourself into a form and an identity, hence the suffering. You pursue spirituality from the same limited and conditioned standpoint and hence you cannot secure any foothold in these pursuits. In whatever subject you are absorbed, you deal with it from the standpoint of a personalized entity, and not as dynamic manifest consciousness…”

          “Hear that Liz’ ?” Godfrey beamed in delight “It was not Roberto or any bloody character, it was only your dynamic manifest consciousness!”
          “In other words, are you saying it was all my fault again, cheeky blithering fool?” Liz’ couldn’t contain her petulance.

          “I think you’re missing the point, dear,… but yes.” He added after a dramatic pause “or you can blame it on Cynchtia Dipity, or her twin sister, Serene.”


            Cynchtia and Serene Dipity had a tea room and cake shoppe on the banks of the river Nedge. You won’t find the river Nedge on any maps, nor will you find Slack Alice’s Cake Hole, despite it’s world famous Chakra Buns. The story hadn’t been written yet about the Dipity’s; they were fragments of a ludic imagination, loosely lucid and at times ludicrously lewd. Llewellyn The Leotard was beginning to take shape, although what that had to do with Slack Alice’s Cake Hole, Elizabeth wasn’t quite sure.


              “As always, reality can’t help but catching up with fiction.” mused Godfrey aloud. “Maybe another case of origami town in the making… If you see what I mean.”

              “I’ve got no idea what you’re rambling about big G.” muttered Finnley who had just reappeared out of the Blubbit in Nowherehampton. “There’s been a call for M’am Liz, by the way. From her cousin Badul.”

              F LoveF Love

                Finnley, who you will surely recall had been on a brief excursion to Nowherehampton, wondered whether to ask what she had missed while away. She decided forlornly there was no point.

                It never makes any friggin’ sense.

                Sense was important to Finnley. Even if superficially a subject made no sense, she liked to believe there was an underlying meaning.

                That’s not true. What are you on about? Your brain is clearly addled. And possibly baduled as well.

                Finnley! you are monopolising the thread again,” admonished Liz. “You are thinking too much and it is sabotaging the beautiful spontaneity of my story. Now, be a good dear and wipe that surly look off your face. You look so much prettier when you smile; you might even attract yourself a nice young man if you would make a bit more effort. Anyway, do cheer up—I want to hear about dear cousin Badul.”


                  Roberto had just heard the end of their conversation. I want to hear about dear cousin Badul, the old tart had said to the maid. Something in his brain was triggered by that name, something he had been led to forgot by his handlyer in Vegas before… his mission. Yes he remembered now that he had a mission. But still all the little tickling wheels in his brain were catching up with the forgotten memories.

                  He looked inside the house. The old tart was handling what looked like a sheep skull. Was she doing some dark magic ? Was she a bruja ? He was not particularly superstitious or religious, but he had learned to fear the brujas of his village in the desert.

                  “Put that on the library between Byron and Baudelaire, will you?”
                  The maid looked at the skull, then at her mistress with the same rollling eyes. Oh it was subtle, so very sutble that the old lady had certainly not seen it, but he had been trained to read people’s faces… well he had read an old book of Chinese face reading that his grand mother had when he was living there… That’s why they recruited him.

                  The maid left with the skull, removed a few books from the shelf and put the skull unceremoniously in between. She shoved the remaining books randomly on other shelves and shrugged.
                  “I’m going to make a banana yogurt cake… without yogurt”, she said to nobody in particular.


                    Big G came to the rescue, as poor Finnley was visibly at a loss for words. Having her talking culinary delights was in itself a revelation as to her levels of stress.

                    Liz, dear. I think your cousin Badul is going to invite us for her nth wedding. There always has been a sort of untold competition between the two of you, hasn’t it?”
                    “Godfey, don’t be silly. There hardly was ever a competition at all, to begin with. Now, be a dear and go fetch me a new husband.”

                    Godfrey had anticipated the unexpected again. His eyes were set on the window, where the shady and hunky enough window-cleaner was peering through, visibly interested by the whole play. With a little make-over, he would make Liz a fine tenth husband, he reckoned.

                    F LoveF Love

                      “I thought cousin Badul was a bloke,” muttered Finnley.


                        Badul is gender neutral”, said Big G, “It comes from ancient Rubbish where gender was pliable and mostly nonsensical”.
                        “I wonder what that can possibly mean about the cousin”, muttered Finnley. She squinted and wondered what could be Liz’ ancient Rubbish name. They were cousin after all. Did they come from and ancient Rubbish family too? She was too polite to ask in that moment.


                          Liz looked at the fat dealer with a snicker “Oh, you’re still here talking nonsense Big G? Haven’t you got your cabbages already? The staff these days… FINNLEY!” she shouted to the gaping muttering maid. “Snap out of this silly trance, will you! Get the man his cabbages, and show those drug-dealing gentlemen out. Can’t be here all day with the cement to set, I have a wedding to plan now.”

                          She turned at the window, looking for Godfrey who had temporarily left her, “what on Earth is he doing talking to that devilishly handsome fellow. Those rubberducks give me an idea for the wedding dress though. Golden yellow for the colour. With gorgeous yellow shoes. I’m feeling ages younger today… Oh, sweet love.”

                          F LoveF Love

                            “Get your own cabbages,” snarled Finnley rudely. Finnley was never at her best before mid afternoon, or indeed at any time of day, and she was mentally exhausted from her earlier attempt at politeness. “All this lovey-dovey stuff is making me want to puke.”


                              “That’s a way to kill the mood” muttered Godfrey. “If you don’t get more compliant, I’m going to have to write you out.”

                              He didn’t say the last sentence out loud, but almost did.

                              The last letter from the editor which had just come through the mail got him all angered. He took a few deep breathes, reminded of the advice of Lady Ping Chongfu, the self-titled Goddess of Fengshui. “You should avoid getting angry during all this year, or the consequences might be disastrous.” Well, she told a lot of rubbish too, that this year men should say yes to their wife, and buy many precious totems and expensive trinkets. Roberto will be in for a spin, with Liz extravagant requests…

                              He looked again at the letter with a resolutely more compliant mood : “Dear, I have reviewed the drafts. The story is not coming out or compelling enough. I have put my remarks on each page. Please check the attached file. You need to rework on this outline. With a brief introduction on last year’s achievement, dwell on the current challenges and requirements to meet our business objectives and then move into strategic plans from your perspective over the period of 3 years that will support the business objectives.”

                              “Damn editors,” he muttered again. “Can’t believe the cheek, “not coming out or compelling enough.” That’s really a way to kill the mood.”

                              F LoveF Love

                                “Stop muttering, Godfrey. What are you not in the mood for?” She winked at him *lasciviously.

                                Godfrey glared. “Stupid ignorant fool of a bossy boss and look at this will you!” He pointed dramatically at his letter. “A typo! He spelt my name Dear!

                                LIz was unperturbed.

                                “Well, I will tell you what I am in the mood for!”

She pirouetted around the recalcitrant Finnley who was still standing in the middle of the room and defiantly not making a start on **getting the cabbages.

                                “Nick, nack, paddywack! I’m in the mood for LOOOOVE!” sang LIz loudly and tunelessy.

                                Finnley grimaced and made a hasty exit.

                                notation* trying to sexy things up for our readers.

                                notation** being a euphemism for not writing a comment, of course.


                                  Liz wandered out into the garden. There was a stiff breeze but the sun was shining and the sky was a dazzling blue. She spied Roberto bending over a rose bush, secateurs in hand, revealing a tantalizing glimpse of buttock crack. Liz laughed out loud. Tantalizing? She must be getting quite desperate if the sight of a gardeners bum crack appeared tantalizing. It had taken her mind off the others momentarily though, and her impatient thoughts of writing them all out of the story.

                                  It really was a most splendid day.

                                  F LoveF Love

                                    Godfrey wandered out after her. “I am sorry about my outburst earlier,” he said remorsefully.
                                    “What outburst?” asked Liz, genuinely puzzled.
                                    Nothing could disturb her ebullient mood on this splendid day.
                                    Or could it?


                                      “Did you have to come out here and interrupt my quiet reverie on gardeners nether regions, Godfrey?” Liz said crossly. “And what is that on your head? Your bald spot is covered in dried spaghetti.”

                                      Guiltily, Godfrey tried to remove the debris from his pate.

                                      “Why, you old rascal! You’ve been a peeping tom again, skulking around in someone elses thread!” Liz shook her head and tut tutted. The head shaking dislodged a crumpled ball of paper from her straw hat, which flew across the lawn in the breeze and landed at Roberto’s feet. The handsome gardener bent down further to pick it up, revealing more buttock.


                                        That’s funny, Roberto thought, a bunch of nonsense.
                                        “What’s that ?” asked Liz, her curiosity picked by the alluredness of a strand of words.
                                        “It just fall off your hat”, said the gardener. He looked at the woman, thinking about what Godfrey had told him. The sunlight certainly made her look radiant. He noticed that the red of her lips was the same as the red rose bush he was just taking care of.
                                        Liz took the paper.
                                        “Be careful, It’s sticky”, said Roberto.
                                        “Say something I don’t know, dear.” She tried to get rid of the paper, tearing it in several pieces in the process.
                                        “I wonder…” she began, “Finnley”, she called waiting for her help. She would certainly know. She had a habit of sticking her nose everywhere.


                                          “What happened to you, Finnley ?” asked Liz. The maid, usually neatly permed looked dishevelled and had forgotten to remove her cucumber mask.
                                          “The delivery man”, began Finnley, “He said someone ordered 30.”
                                          “30 what ?”
                                          “30 crates of carrot champagne.”
                                          “Carrot champagne ? I didn’t know they could make alcohol out of carrots,” said Liz. She pouted lasciviously, thinking of what she could do with all that champagne. She had never taken a bath in champagne, that could be a first. She would have to be careful with the carrot tan though.
                                          “They can do alcohol with anything”, added Godfrey.
                                          “Who ordered that ?” asked Liz, “And why 30 crates ?”
                                          “Apparently, it’s your cousin Badul”, said Finnley. A cucumber fall off her face.
                                          Liz’ lips closed tight at the mention of her cousin.
                                          “It’s Badul’s intention to have the wedding at your property.”
                                          Liz dropped her spaghetti hat on the freshly mown grass. Roberto bent over, showing even more of his crack, to pick up the hat before it attracted ants. Liz bit her lips.

                                          F LoveF Love

                                            Suddenly there was a piercing scream.

                                            Finnley’s face had turned white—although later she would claim it was not fear but rather the cucumber mask giving her face a death-like appearance—and she was pointing a shaking finger in the direction of Roberto’s derrière. Or more accurately, towards where Roberto’s derrière had been prior to the scream; like the others, he had jumped up in alarm at the ear splitting noise.

                                            “What the devil is the matter?” gasped LIz. She grasped Finnley’s shoulders firmly and shook her. “Pull yourself together; it’s just a bum crack. I know it is a long time since you will have seen a man’s bum, but really as I keep saying to you, if you will just smarten yourself up and make a bit more effort. I mean, look at you; you’ve got vegetables falling off your face ….” Liz shook her head in confoundment.

                                            “It’s not the bum crack,” snarled Finnley, recovering her usual unflappable composure. “It is the tattoo on his bum. The tattoo of the girl with the glass feet. Do you not know what that means?”

                                            Roberto’s eyes narrowed as he began to back away towards the gate.

                                            In all the excitement, nobody noticed Godfrey picking up the sticky and ripped shreds of paper which Liz had let drop to the ground.

                                            Or did they?


                                              “Why are you picking rubbish up off the lawn, Godfrey?” Liz had felt a certain furtive energy emanating from the old coot, causing her to glance in his direction, while simultaneously giving Finnley a shove in the direction of the house. “Go and tidy yourself up while I fetch Roberto back,” she said to the distraught maid. “I need a closer look at his bottom, without cucumbers flying all over the place. Really, do I have to do everything myself around here?” It really was exasperating.

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