Email me

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

106th email

From: Oftenbark Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Friday July 6th, 1999 7:20 AM
Subject: RE Stacey here…

Dear Stacey, Oftenbark the Dog here. Sorry it’s been a few days. I don’t check my email that often. Actually this whole email thing is new to me.

Not that I’m blind to email correspondence. I’ve always been a little curious about Dom’s messages; but truth be told, I feel safer to engage with strangers from a distance.

Part of this is due to shyness.

The other part is about self preservation.

See once the men in white coats get a sniff of a literate and tech savvy canine; it’d be only a matter of hours before it’s electrodes on desexed testicles, and a dreadlocked red, blue and green wired science hat that reduces my complex and poetic thought patterns into simple and qualitative wavy lines. Ingrates.

See, I am not a freak, Stacey. And will not put myself out there to public scrutiny.

I will not do interviews.
I will not be experimented on.
I will not be reduced.
I will not be a chapter in a book no one ever reads.

So with this in mind, please keep our correspondence a secret. Besides who will believe you if you confess to having a written relationship with a dog, anyway!?

Now to answer your question about Elsa – ‘do I like her?’

This is a hard question to answer as Dom likes her. I think he likes her a lot. I surmise this because I hear them kissing and talking all the time; not much laughter though – I think that’s odd as Dom is quite funny.

Anyway and besides that, for this reason, I like her too.
She’s sweet.
There’s always a ‘but’ right. Well—-
But there’s a part of that doesn’t like her at all.

There I’ve said it.
Wrote it.
Said it. You know what I mean.

See, part of me thinks that Dom deserves so much better than Elsa.
And it’s not dog envy. It’s true. I mean Elsa goes out all the time. She stays out late, gets drunk, doesn’t let Dom know where she is.

I mean, I know she’s always done this. She is a self proclaimed party-girl. But I sometimes see Dom fret, worry about her, groom me.
See Dom likes to brush me when he worries. It’s his tell and this would suit me fine normally. But when it’s 3:00 in the morning all I can offer is:

“Come on! I’m sleepy!”
Brush, brush, brush—
“Dom, this is pointless!”
Brush, brush, brush—
“Who’s going to see me at this hour?”

And when Elsa does finally arrive home; it’s usually via a lift from some strange guy with a smoky car and a shit mix tape.

Those nights, she also crashes quickly, so any attempt to discuss it is quashed with a speed-of-light nod on the couch, on my rug mind you too.

So sensibly and without any other choice, Dom brings it up the next day.

But again Elsa shuts him down – accusing him of being controlling - which he is – I mean dog collar, sit, beg, paw, stand, etc - but this isn’t controlling. Elsa is wrong, here.

She is deflecting. Cleverly, for it makes Dom feel like it’s his behaviour that needs addressing. Not her stay-out-all-night get-blind-drunk flirt-with-everyone smell-like Aramis-and-tap-beer and attempt to get the world-record-for Friday-night-front-seat-stranger-shagging

And to be honest, I’m a little surprised she’s even getting any attention. See one of the things that really irks me aboiut Elsa is (and I hate to say this) but Elsa is a little plain.

Not in the looks department; as all people seem plain to me. No Elsa seems plain in her (what us dogs call) energy.

I know that sounds intangible to you. But from a dog point of view, energy is one of our most instinctive and prioritised senses.

We just get the essence of people quickly.

Okay maybe I’m being a little cruel. Elsa can be fun. She does play catch and she does scratch my neck.

But sometimes, usually when the day is coming to an end, and she is heading out, I sit in my basket and stare at her; trying to work her out.

I smell her. She smells like paper. I listen to her and she sounds like a slightly out-of-tune hum. And on the odd occasion I lick her, she tastes like unsalted butter.

You on the other hand have a special energy. And not that it’s possible, but in a perfect world, one where dogs can be Kings, I would nudge you in Dom’s direction.

Not that you were asking of course. But in case you’re having a bad day, I thought I’d mention it.

And please don’t tell Dom. I’m certain he’d give me away to the ‘farm in the country’ if he knew.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

101 - 105th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday July 3rd, 1999 10:24 AM
Subject: RE RE RE Just for you

Dear Stacey,
That was really amazing. Can I let Dom read it?


From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday July 3rd, 1999 10:36 AM
Subject: RE RE RE RE Just for you

Sorry Stace’, you wouldn’t believe this but I just found Oftenbark on the computer. I didn’t know he could type.

Anyway I had a quick look at the message he sent and thought it was better to not read your email. It seemed private.

And in the future I have set up an email address for him if you want to correspond.

Hope today is a better day.


From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: Dom Borax
Sent: Tuesday, July 3rd, 1999 19:27 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE Just for you

Hey Dom, you can read the email if you want.

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday July 3rd, 1999 22:01 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE Just for you

Hi Stacey, I reckon it is best to keep it between you and my dog.


From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: Oftenbark Borax
Sent: Tuesday July 3rd, 1999 22:01 PM
Subject: Stacey here…

Dear Oftenbark…I’m not sure how often you check your emails…but wanted to send a quick one saying hello…so hello and welcome to the email world…

don’t worry I won’t pester you too much…but I hope you’re well and that Dom is treating you with kindness…

how is he by the way…
things going well with Elsa…
do you like her…?


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

100th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: Dom Borax
Sent: Monday, July 2nd, 1999 21:01 PM
Subject: RE RE Just for you

Dear Oftenbark

…here’s who I was thinking of in the small hours of Saturday morning when Marcus was trying to be passionate…

It was around four in the morning…lovely and quiet…usually my time actually…but for this moment I was sharing it with him…

we were in bed…and he was going through the usual warm up routine…

I know it’s only been a short romance so far…but I’m already familiar with the gently nudging of the neck as a starting line for a what is fast becoming a shagging marathon in high altitude…

As the miles passed…I found myself drifting…I thought of this guy I met when I was in high school…we only kissed…but it was so unbelievably hot…

We met as a blind date would you believe…set up by my cousin for his sixteenth birthday party…it was a Saturday… quite warm…the guests where all wearing small amounts of clothing…her pool had the proper phd, the garden was clad in outdoor Chinese lanterns…

…and the punch was spiked…

I arrived a little late…had an argument with my Mother about curfew…she’d then refused to drive me…so I caught public transport…time wasting…got to the shin dig an hour over…

Upon arriving…I bailed up my cousin… I gave her the family cuckoo gift…a funky hat she’d had her eye on…

She was happy and already merry from the punch…she kissed me…her breath was hot, sweet and rendered with Bacardi…she then, without any shame dragged me to my blind date…his name was Paul…

My cousin slurred an introduction…

Stacey – Paul
Paul – Stacey

‘Remember this moment, guys as I’m so going to talk about this at your wedding…’

My cousin then gave a well timed comic hiccup and staggered away.
And we were alone...silence...dread…what do we say…? We don’t know each other…we’re both single, sure… but…do we smell right to each other…?

Fortunately he was cute…classic looking…indeed a little retro…sun bleached hair…nice shaped eyes, red splashed cheeks with just the right amount of freckles…his teeth were not too perfect…not too cubist… just the right side of artistically off…

And I think he didn’t mind my look either…I did look kinda cute in a mid nineties way…cute clip in my hair…shorter then…and stained dark…fake glasses to make me look smart...what an idiot...

Anyway…after a few pleasant information sharing sentences…we both decided to brush of the resume and talk truly…we moved under the steps leading up to my Cousin’s high set house…we both had a glass of the spiked punch and were perched on two hewn besser blocks…after a breath, Paul confessed that this was his first blind date and that he was relieved I wasn’t blind at all…

Now I know this is a little lame…but I was younger…less defined…and prone to polite laughter…so I did just that…

…but then he truly surprised me…he admitted that his last statement was foolish…indeed he called it an ‘uncle’ statement…meaning those groaning piths that any chuckle-addicted Uncle utters at large family get togethers…

…and this time I really laughed…and before I knew it the night was fast nearing an end…we’d spoken for hours…not sure what about…it was cooler and most guests were getting picked up…and it was clear the night was over…

He lived quite close by and was walking home…I was staying…

And soon we’d say goodnight…

In those last few minutes it was awkward…are we going to kiss? I really wanted him to kiss me…I really wanted a passionate moment…I was a little punchy…but I was also flushed…and impatient…

…so I kissed him…

And we kissed for ages…until it hurt…until our people had sent out scouts to see if we were safe…and even though they called our names…we kept kissing and kissing and kissing…

Changing positions but never breaking contact…no one leading…just kissing…

It was so wonderful…

After our time…we slowly separated…we looked at each other…eyes now open and adjusting to whatever light was left under the stairway to my Cousin’s front door…

We didn’t say anything …we just looked…and he walked away…home…

I never saw him again…didn’t want too…the moment was so special, the last thing I wanted was to truly discover him and have it tarnished…it was a great moment…just that…a great moment…

It was at this point in my life, I started formulating my existential viewpoint… why have expectation…why have judgment…why have prejudice to cloud the perfect moment…

And I deeply tried to never think of it again until Marcus was on top of me …

I so needed something to keep me from crying…and when I though of Paul…that’s when I thought of the night we shared…the long kiss… the short goodbye…and it was so damn sexy…

I slept well that night…

Does that answer your question, OftenbarK?


Sunday, December 19, 2010

99th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Sunday July 1st, 1999 11:29 PM
Subject: RE Just for you

Stacey, that is so full on. I admit after Friday night, I went home and watched Rage too. I quite like Prince. But I couldn’t get into it. I was thinking of you and hoping everything was okay.

I mean, you’re so bloody strong and you’ll survive but if it ever gets too hard you can always come over for a nice cup of tea.

Wanna have a cup of tea?

I don’t know if this helps, but men are stupid.

Now, I should frame this with a gentle reminder that I am a self hating man.

But men are still stupid.

I mean to give you a present from an ex girlfriend?

What was he thinking!!?
Is he nuts?

It seems he wants to punish you for getting attention, I reckon.
Don’t let him peck at you, Stace’. (And allusion to Maya Angelou – don’t let them peck you to death with their small comments and actions etc)

And embrace this new day. Let him snore and have some toast.

And it’s raining today.

You love the rain, don’t you?
I love the rain.

I love the rain because it allows me to stay inside without having to exhaust all with excuses.

I love the rain because when it hits my windows it makes the glass look like its sweating.

I love the rain because it washes away my guilt about watching morning televsion and afternoon movies.

I love the rain because it brings a grey sheen of gauze over the world making people look like Lowrey stickmen.

I love the rain because I think my hair looks better when it’s wet.

I love the rain because you do too.

So with the snoring, toast and rain how can it this day not be better?
But in case none of the above rambling works; I ask again: Wanna have a cup of tea?

Okay - hey - how’s this to entice you further:

Elsa has bought these lovely Danishes (named Hans and Lars) from the Bakery. They have none of that Hamlet madness and simply just want to be eaten.

I should warn you though, they are a little sad and I don’t quite get their humour but to compensate, they have nice apple and custard fillings. That’s a plus.

Okay what I just written was stupid. But as you can tell I’m trying very hard to make you smile. Failing, I’m sure.

Anyway, I’ll give you a ring and see if you’re home.


PS Oftenbark read your email and wisely said; “What a dick.”

PPS I’d never say that of course.

PPPS I hope you don’t mind my dog reading your email. I know you said it was for my eyes only, but Oftenbark takes any opportunity to jump online and read my emails. He tells me he only does it to keep me honest. Personally I think he’s preparing a file to use against me when the Rapture comes.

PPPPS And I know I shouldn’t ask this question but who were you thinking about when you were with Marcus last night. I know it’s personal – but Oftenbark made me ask.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

98th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: Dom Borax
Sent: Saturday, June 30th, 1999 14:26 PM
Subject: Just for you

Dom…okay you’ve read the diplomatic global email sent to everyone now here’s the truth…

For your eyes only…

…it was a fucking nightmare…Marcus pulled this guilt trip on me as soon as I got home…

...he said, I should have left with him...

...he said he felt embarrassed that I stayed on

...he said he hated knowing I was having fun…

...he said that I probably had more fun without him being there…

I think he just has an issue with birthdays…

he hates his own…he says he feels individual attention is selfish…

it’s his so-called faux socialism coming out…

personally, I think he gets embarrassed that everyone is looking at him…giving gifts when the world is so fucked up…it’s a priorities thing…he places his priorities on aid over personal celebration…

he says he feels hypocritical eating fine food, laughing at regifted presents and drinking mid range wine when there’s such inequity of wealth in the world…

And then he gets all self defeated…he admits that it’s hard to have fun when you have a world perspective…he tries to turn it off but he can’t…it’s who he is…and at time he hates himself for it…he hates that he can never have fun…

And in these moments I get it...with both barrels…

I get the Karl Marx barrel…
And I get the Susan B Anthony barrel…

Anyway, back to last night…I came home at about three AM…

I thought he’d be asleep…but he wasn’t…he was watching...what’s it called...the late night music clip show... this is driving me crazy...I’m going to have to look it up... (man, having senior moments already)


It’s called could I forget... anyway they were playing a whole bunch of Prince clips on Rage…and I think he was torn between feeling angry, assaulted and sexy…

…he then turned on me…

he accused me of not caring about his beliefs…
I…as you know…was a little in my I fought back…

I said he didn’t care about my beliefs…he was dominating the was all about him…I had a strong belief system too…and all that we talked about was his opinion…

I said it was ironic that for a man who believed in the shared wealth…there was no sharing within his own personal interactions…that he wasn’t a socialist at all…he was a middle class soft intellectual trying to find meaning in other people’s misery…and this is unforgivable…this is using a true doctrine as a deficit of true character…


He looked at me…muted Raspberry Beret on the television…and asked if I subscribed to him…

I lost it…it was my birthday and for one moment…just in that moment…couldn’t he subscribe to me…? Other’s did…they all did…

I threw the regifted presents at him:

LOOK! I said…
I got this ugly porcelain dog…
I got this jigsaw puzzle of the twelve apostles…
I got this out-of-date bottle of Mustard Pickle from someone’s road trip…
I got this moth eaten toy gorilla that dances to the Macarena when you press its chest…
I got this little book of pithy one liners that isn’t funny…
I got this ‘Sea monkey’s on Mars’ globe from the National Geographic shop
...and I got this ‘days of the week’ set of underpants…

but what did I get from you? I got nothing…you didn’t get me anything…

He sat back in his chair at this point and grumbled that he told me he wasn’t getting me anything on my birthday…birthday’s are awkward and imposed…he told me I knew he was going to get me something the following day…I knew that, he stressed…

…he then stood and walked into his bedroom…

I thought for a second…here he goes…into bed…avoid it all…avoid me…read his book and trick himself into not feeling by feeling about the world instead…

But he didn’t…he came back out with this wrapped box…he told me it was late now…tomorrow even…and he was going to give me my present…as promised…

Okay…I didn’t see that one coming…I have to admit…I wasn’t out of my rage yet…he had muted rage on the television and he was trying to mute the rage in me…

I took a breath and opened the box…inside was a book called Pencil Letter by a Russian poet named Irina Ratushinskaya…she wrote them while in prison in 1982 for anti soviet agitation and propaganda…

Marcus had been given the book by an ex girlfriend and now he was giving it to me…

She was dead… he said
The Poet? I asked
The Girlfriend he said
Dead-dead!? I asked, stressing the second word
No, just dead in my heart, he said.

He then said…it was me, now…only me… he then opened the book and read me his favourite poem…

“The day died like a dog and won’t come back,
So let’s arrange a funeral feast
There will be many more days just as black
I know. The further east
You go, the worse it gets
(That’s the usual fate of pioneers)

Then we went to the bedroom and fucked…but I had revenge…I wasn’t in the moment with him…I was absent…I was breaking my rules again and thinking of someone else…someone from another time…and he never knew because he presumed I was faithful…but he was wrong…he was so wrong…

Happy birthday to me…


Sunday, December 12, 2010

97th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Crisps, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Saturday, June 30th, 1999 14:04 PM
Subject: What a night

Hi All…

...thanks so much for last night…it was a hoot…

Marcus feels a little guilty for getting a little aggressive at the waiter…and thank you Dom for stepping in and making sure that he didn’t spit in our food…

Indeed Marcus wanted to say to all of you that he was off his game last night…works been tough and he admits he brought this baggage to the night…so he’s sorry he left early but knows that he’ll see you all soon…


Stacey (now 20 and already planning what retirement home she’ll book into –should I trust one that has the word ‘Pasture’ in the name?)

PS Cath, I think my tits are nicer than yours.

PPS Dom, okay I believe you that your ‘days of the week’ underpants gift is second hand and fresh…I will endeavour to keep them…wear them even…indeed I might wear Monday’s undies on Sunday just to keep Sunday’s clean at all times...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

96th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: Dom Borax
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 16:11 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE Friday Night Dinner


PS See you at dinner.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

95th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Friday 29th, 1999 14:48 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE Friday Night Dinner


Elsa just read the email. She’s not happy. She stressed to me that she will not be showing off her flexible prowess at dinner.

I wish I hadn’t written that.

Now Elsa believes everyone will think she’s a bragard at best and a slattern at worst.

Sorry Elsa.

As punishment Elsa said that we’re not going out for at least half an hour.

So I’m single until 3:15. Wanna dump Marcus for fifteen minutes so we can have an honourable affair? ;)



Wednesday, December 1, 2010

94th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Wilma Petranoff, Fryman, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 13: 42PM
Subject: RE RE RE Friday night dinner

Hey Stacey and everyone, Elsa and I will be there.

I’m really looking forward to meeting you. (Except you, Crisps. I never look forward to seeing you. I see too much of you already :))

Please be nice to us. We are the new people.

We are kind. We like food. We’ve been bred in captivity. We don’t bite. You can take flash photos of us if you like. If you’re wearing protective gear, you can pat us. We come with our own wine and sheets of newspaper for private business.

We are allergic to peanuts, omnivores, easy to care for, can be amusing; don’t smell too much, endangered and quite fond of Stacey.

Though a word of warning; we will probably be quiet for the first course.
This is not a sign of aggression. It is a sign of shyness.

As an ice breaker; can I suggest you ask Elsa (who is a dancer) how flexible she is? She might even show you. You’ll be impressed.

By the main course, things will have changed, I promise. With the incentive of food and an eager audience of strangers we will both be performing like Sea-Park professionals.

Watch as we dance on our tails, fly through hoops and swim in formation to gain your attention. We will also gladly eat out of your hand for affection at this stage.

Though as the main course and second bottle of wine finishes, I should warn you that I’ll probably be making too much noise.

You might think it’s a mating call. But it’s just nervous chatter. I promise. I apologise in advance.

By desert all will be fine.

I’m sure Elsa will be happy to pose for photos and I hope I haven’t flashed my tits as an attempt to mirror the alphas in the group.

By the end of the night, I am certain we will be free of our cage and dancing with the public.

At this point I am certain it will be safe to hold us. You might even want to take us home.

Really looking forward to it.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

92 and 93 email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Crisps, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Wednesday, June 27th, 1999 23:45 PM
Subject: Friday night dinner

Hi all…on Friday I am no longer a teenager…I am a woman…an ironic woman…who feels a little sad about it all…

so please share this ironic moment with me at Il Mondo…Kangaroo Point…at 8:00…I promise I’ll only be sad during entrĂ©e…then I’ll get drunk and flash my tits…


PS This year I will be accepting presents…but as long as it’s second hand…something regifted please…

From: Dominique Doyle
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Crisps, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Thursday, June 28th, 1999 8:31 AM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Hey Stacey (and all) I will be there. I’ve found you the perfect gift. Quick question – do you like Jigsaw Puzzles?


PS Do you mind if I bring someone? I’ve started this ‘too soon to talk about’ thing with this chick named Deb’. She’s cool. Lez’ but not too lez’.

From Gill Shepherd
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Crisps, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Dominique, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Thursday, June 28th, 1999 9:26 AM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Hi Stacey, I’m so sorry but Kiki and I are out of town this weekend. We’re going up north for his parents wedding anniversary. I’m not sure why. It’s not a special year and they don’t really like me.

I’ve found you gift by the way. Kiki won it at last year’s exhibition. I’ve had it sitting in the kitchen for a few months. It scares me. But I know you’ll like it.

It’s porcelain and kitsch. And I know you’ve had your eye on it.

Happy Birthday

From: Crisps
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Thursday, June 28th, 1999 11:53AM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Fuck yeah – I love Il Mondo. I’m going to dress up as one of those Venice boat-guys. I might even bring my own punt.

From: David Angus
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Wilma Petranoff, Fryman, Lou, Sus’, David M Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 13:01 PM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Yep me and Lou will be there. We might be a little late as got a work thing to go to before. So start without us.
David and Lou

From: Cath Leaman-Walsh
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Wilma Petranoff, Fryman, Lou, Sus’, David M Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 13:01 PM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Hello Stacey, Pete’s out of town at the moment doing a gig in Wagga. But I’m home alone. So I’ll be flying solo and flashing my tits with you.


From: WKP
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Fryman, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Thursday, June 28th, 1999 22:01 AM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Fryman and I will be there. Is it byo? And can you make sure we don’t sit next to Sus’ and David? They’re starting to smell like each other and it freaks me out. :)

From: Sus Kristofski
To: Dom Borax Stacey Marchenkova, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Wilma Petranoff, Fryman, Lou, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 9:13 AM
Subject: RE Friday night dinner

Hey Stacey, happy birthday. I hope this isn’t too late but Dave and I are keen as all get out. I’ll ring you later today to confirm.
Sus and Dave

PS Hey, Petranoff – you’re the one that’s starting to stink like your bloke. And he smells like Centrelink! In your face! :(

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax, Marcus, Elsa, Dominique, Crisps, Fryman, Wilma Petranoff, Lou, Sus’, David M, David A, Pete, Cath, Kiki, Gill, Lou H, Nick
Sent: Friday, June 29th, 1999 11:42 AM
Subject: RE RE Friday night dinner

Hi All, a quick answer to all your questions:

Dominique: Absolutely bring Deb…look forward to meeting her…is she the double-bluff tart who really is a tart that you’ve had your eye on? Hey – also love jigsaw puzzles – especially ones of clowns.

Gill: Bugger to hear you and the K-man are out of town…keep your head up…and if his folks get too tiring…take it as a life-lesson not to be like them when we’re old and bitter.

Let’s catch up when you’re back so you can share some more of his horrible mother’s stories. (Sorry, K’ I know you’re reading this – but you know it’s true)

And is the gift that weird mongrel china dog with the sponky eyes and missing ear? I hope it is.

Crisps: You’re an idiot and I love you.

Dave and Lou: Get here when you can. I know you’re busy and I’m really looking forward to seeing you. It’s been ages.

Cath: Who needs Pete anyway…he’d be way too interested in us flashing our tits…indeed they all will…so how about we make it a date…ladies lav’…11:30 you me and the mirror…

Wilma: Yes it’s byo...and you are so sitting next to Sus and Dave…just to see if you’re going to smell like each other by the end of the night.

Sus: Read above.

Lou and Nick: Haven’t heard from you…will keep a couple of seats free in case you get this in time…but no worries in case…speak to you next week…

Dom and Elsa: Aren’t you going to reply either? It’s my birthday, buster… come on…anyway see you tonight.

Love to all

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

92 email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Wednesday, June 27th, 1999 20:12 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election


Yeah – let’s catch up…actually it’s my birthday on the weekend…Friday…I wasn’t going to do anything…just hang with Marcus…but maybe we could go out for a bite to eat?

I’ve got this friend….whose folks own a hotel…Il Mondo…anyway…the restaurant there is really lovely…good Italian…they do a mean calamari…so tender…marinated in passionfruit, I think…or some citrus…actually I think I’m making that up…but it is good…

So if you’re free maybe we could have a bite there…bring Crisps and some of the gang…what do you think…?

I know it’s short notice…that’s because I’m a little neurotic about birthdays…reinforcement of time, I guess…

But this year I’m feeling sorry for myself…no longer a teenager…I feel...maybe... I need to do something…

What do you think…if you’re keen…I’ll send out an invite…


PS Do you think I should invite Keith…?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

91st email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday 26th, 1999 13:25PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election

Also I forgot to mention that I ran into Keith yesterday. Do you remember him? He was the guy that Elsa took home just before we hooked up. It was strange to see him.

Without Keith I’d still be single.

Without Keith I’d be sad and lonely listening to the band Bread and cooking bread

“If a loaf of bread takes a thousand kneeds
Then why do I need you…”

Anyway, there I was, coming out of class yesterday and heading toward the refectory.

As I neared, I saw Keith. He was standing just off from the entrance, near the balcony overlooking the pool and oval.

I started to move toward him.

But he caught a glimpse of my approach.

He ducked behind the refectory door and hid among a few empty tomato stained chip packets and browned apple cores.

Indeed if there was shadow I’m certain Keith would have crouched in it.

I, naturally, hesitated at this point.

Why was Keith hiding from me?

Was it because he finally understood that there was more to the Universe than him? I mean, this would’ve blown his brain and he ceraintly would’ve needed to hide, ponder, eat some chips and catch his breath.


Perhaps he was hiding from me because he was wearing just the bottom half of a large furry animal-like costume-charcter-suit.

Yes, the more I think of it, I suspect he was hiding because of this.

I mean who wouldn’t? No one wants to be seen wearing half a suit. Where’s the magic in that? Where’s the illusion? Where’s the anonymity? Where's the pride?

Anyway, there was our Keith. He had the bottom half of this Koala costume on. Truly exposed.

Actually I have to be honest here - I’m assuming it was a Koala. It might’ve been a cat or rabbit. All I could see was paws and grey fur.

And, now I remember, I presumed it was a Koala because there was this environmental plastic bucket with a sticker of a Koala on it.

So my assumption was warrented.

The bucket was filled with small change resting by the limp, dead top half of the costume.

Indeed the sweaty grey fur actually dangled part way into the bucket like a greedy banker searching for any form of bonus.

Whatever reason, the image was too great not to interrogate. So I continued to wander over.

Me: Keith?

Him: No.

Me: You’re Keith.

Him: No, I’m a Koala.

Me: Keith the Koala?

Him: No, just a Koala.

Me: Okay, okay, I understand you have an identity to protect.

Him: Yes.

Me: But you’re only protecting your lower half.

Him: The Important half.

Me: The Important half?

Him: (Sotto) The penis.

Me: I get you.

Him: And so do they--

--said Keith as he pointed toward some female Legal undergraduates as they quickly marched into the refectory.

Me: But deep down you’re Keith, right?

Keith looked around to make sure no one was listening. He whispered:

Him: Sure. Okay. I’m Keith. But don’t tell anyone.

Me: Who am I going to tell?

Him: The Wilderness society.

Me: Why are they dangerous?

Him: They’re the Wilderness Society.

Me: Aren’t they a conservation group?

Him: Yes.

Me: All about the protection of natural habitat.

Him: Yes.

Me: Passive and peaceful.

Him: Yes.

Me: So what’s the problem?

Him: No problem. I’m just Koala #31. Okay?

Me: Not Keith?

Him: No. Not Keith.

Me: Okay.

At this point there was a lull in the conversation. Keith looked around; making sure no one was watching and started to put on his Koala head back on.

It was saggy foam number where the eyes drooped dipsomaniac-like and the rubber black nose had been picked at by some obsessive charity worker.

Keith then took a breath and picked up his plastic donation bucket. He shook it, rattling the coins inside and started moving into the refectory.

Me: You don’t remember me, do you?

Him: I’m working, now.

Me: I kicked you out of my home.

Him: Can’t you see I’m busy.

Me: I was a little rude.

Keith then stopped. He stared through the bloodhound matted eye holes; rage building.

Him: One minute.

He said shaking the bucket. He repeated:

Him: One minute. One dollar. I’m not free, you know.

Me: I have to pay you?

Him: I’m not a cheap whore.

Me: Really.

Him: I have my pride.

He said as the back of his costume slipped a little and I got a brief glimpse of his underwear.

Me: Will you hold me after?

Him: No. Why would I do that?

I shrugged in response and took out a dollar from the pocket. I dropped it into his bucket. I hesitiated:

Me: Oh, how will we know when the minute is up?

Him: Just because I’m a Koala doesn’t mean I don’t have a watch. Jesus Christ! Noble-fucking savage syndrome, I tell you.

He said as he lifted his watch too closely to his gouged out eye holes.

Him: So what do you want to talk about?

Me: Elsa.

Him: Who’s Elsa?

Me: The Girl you took home.

Him: I take a lot of girls home.

Me: From the dance party?

Him: Still a blank.

Me: It was only a couple of weeks ago.

Him: Do you know how many I’ve slept with since then?

Me: Koalas or Humans?

Him: What?

Me: Nothing. Look, Keith—

Him: Koala #31—

Me: Koala #31, I just wanted to say thank you.

Him: You’re welcome.

Me: You don’t know what I’m thanking you for, do you?

Him: Being me?

Me: No.

Him: Saving the planet?

Me: No.

Him: Giving you something to aspire to?

Me: No (beat) What do you mean? Aspire?

Him: To be me.

Me: No. I wanted to thank you for Elsa.

Him: Who’s Elsa?

Me: The girl you slept with. See if you hadn’t been there, I would’ve never found her.

Suddenly he turned. I could sense his benevolence snapping.

Him: What do you mean found her?

Me: We’re together now.

Him: You scumbag.

Me: What?

Him: You binbag.

Me: Excuse me.

Him: How dare you you sleep with my girlfriend.

Me: What are you talking about?

Him: I love Elsa.

Me: You didn’t know who she was a minute ago.

Keith then lifted his watch to his face; remembering our transaction.

Him: Times up.

He then hitched up his Koala costume and sauntered into the refectory; calling passionately for donations.

Most ingorned him and soon he’d made his way through and moved onto the Medical building.

So that was my Monday and my second encounter with Keith.

I really hope I see him again. He’s too much fun.

Oh and forgot to answer - next weekend – we have no plans. Do you want to catch up? Couple’s double date, maybe?


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

90th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday 26th, 1999 11:32AM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election


God, last weekend was so far away.

Friday we went out with some of Elsa’s friends from the dance company she works for.

Dance types can certainly drink.

It was fun though. Not much conversation but come 3:00am they took over the dance floor. Elsa was the lead. Everyone wanted to dance with her. I wanted to dance with her. But I was quite far back in the queue. So I danced with Anyone instead.

Can you believe it? Amazing what vodka, jealousy and lust can make you do.

Saturday was a quite day. It was nice not having to entertain an odd man in our Kitchen. I think Elsa feels a little lost without a stranger wandering nude.

So I changed my name, put on a homeless hat and stripped down to make her feel comfortable.

My God, I’ve become the strange man in my own Kitchen!

Anyway for the rest of the day Elsa and I had a quietee. She’s not much of a talker – more a sleeper. Funny how I thought that was endearing a few weeks ago.

I cooked a big breakfast – at 3:00pm

And at dinner time and we watched a couple of movies. Elsa really likes dance movies so we watched The Red Shoes and The Turning Point. I liked The Red Shoes (fell asleep during The Turning Point)

Sunday we had dinner at her folks. I’ve known them for a while and Sunday roast is a ritual. We didn’t tell them that we were seeing each other though – still played the "just friends" game.

It was kinda awkward because the evening’s focus of conversation turned to Elsa’s romantic life with suggestions from all of her family about who she could possibly date.

Her mother thinks she should date a doctor; an Irish doctor; an Irish catholic doctor.

Her father thinks she should become a nun.

And her brother, Kieran, suggested -- me.

Kieran:Elsa should marry Dom as they are already kinda married.

There was a strained moment of silence.

I looked at Elsa. She looked at me. But before we could respond; both of her parents burst out laughing.

This was extremely awkward as this gesture made it apparent how her parents thought of me as a suitor.

After the laughter the brief conversation went something like this:

Elsa’s Mother: Actually Dom, if you changed your degree to medicine – you could be in with a chance.

Elsa’s Father: Dom, finish your potatoes.

Elsa’s Mother: And there’s some Irish blood in you, isn’t there?

Elsa’s Father: Dom would you like some more wine?

Elsa’s Mother: And I’m sure I’ve seen you at mass.

Elsa’s Father: Dom, would you like me to give you a lift home, tonight?

Elsa and I said nothing.

I have to confess that after we cleared the dishes we did duck into her old room and made out. But Elsa has a lot of dolls. Freaky dolls from all over the world. They are all lined up on one side, facing the bed.

And as we kissed, I felt they were watching me; especially the one from East Germany – who was taking notes and reporting us to her father.

So that was the weekend.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

89th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Saturday, June 23rd, 1999 22:56 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election

Hey Dom…that makes sense...alluding to the Bellamy-rom-com...makes a lot of sense...

though I have to admit for a second I thought you were talking about two people we know…

I feel a little egocentric for thinking that…but I am prone to that mania…

I mean…as a kid…I actually thought the song Come on Eileen was about my mother (her name is Eileen)…so this is what you’re dealing with, buster…

And hell-yeah...I’d love to see a romantic comedy with you...sounds like fun...though I have to warn you...I cry in movies...very easily...and sometimes inappropriately...I once cried in Ace Ventura Pet Detective because there's something just so sad about Jim Carrey... when we go to the better bring some tissues or a really absorbent sleeve...100 percent cotton, please...


Whatcha do over the weekend?
Whatcha doing next weekend?


PS Hired Some Kind of Wonderful after you mentioned it. I really liked it. Though I thought Eric Stolz has quite confronting red hair.

PPS You will never be the Bellemy, trust’re far too interesting...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

88th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Friday June 22nd, 1999 7:21AM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election

Hey Stacey,

And I can’t believe I wrote

‘He likes her. She likes someone else. He then likes someone else and she ends up liking him…’

It doesn’t really mean anything; just alluding to those classic familiar romantic narratives – Age of Innocence, Sense and Sensibility, Some Kind of Wonderful etc.


PS Have you seen those films? I am such a sucker for those kinds of films. I find myself so involved in the love triangle; I so want the people to get together.

But pride, war, illness, evil parents, pledged marriage, sacrifice, romantic blindness, accident, fear, addiction or genital insecurity gets in the way and once that gets in the way some other guy steps in.

In film-talk they call him that character the "Bellamy" named after the actor Ralph Bellamy.

See I learnt this in a film class. Ralph Bellamy was in such films as His Girl Friday and Awful Truth (both great films).

He's the guy that the girl is with at the begining of the story. He's the boring but nice guy.

He's the wrong guy.

I guess Bill Pullman is the Bellamy in Sleepless in Seattle. We want Hanks and Ryan to get together but Pullman is in the way.

Simply, the Bellamy is always in the way.

Man, I love romantic comedies.

PPS We should go see a romantic comedy together one day, what do you think?

PPPS: Just had a thought, I'm not the Bellamy in my own life, am I? :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

87 email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Thursday, June 21st, 1999 23:58 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election


Marcus is in bed…reading…I’m staying over…alone…and it’s only midnight….

He just turned the light is off…his book is on the bedside table…I’m having wine and time is slow…

I really liked your rave on time btw…really funny…though I think you forgot one attack on time…

Time is a scaremonger…it wakes you with a frightening loud smash to the head every morning…yelling ‘help help me!’...

you try to help, but it teases you with a snooze button…a calming option from the fear…

but time isn’t done with you yet…it alarms you ten minutes later…loving that this pattern of worry can be repeated time and time again…

(based on this – time sounds like a sadistic shrew, don’t you think?)

Anyway – that’s my attempt at blaming time…

Keep it if you like it and add it to your routine …I’m sure all the other girls you email will find it very amusing…

Sorry that sounds catty…didn’t mean it to be catty…I quit work tonight…so feeling a little vulnerable…

And I have to ask…in your spiel about time you talked about Bad timing…

‘He likes her. She likes someone else. He then likes someone else and she ends up liking him.’

What did you mean by that…?


PS I can’t believe I asked that question.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

86th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Thursday June 21st, 1999 12:24PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE Matrix and Election

Hey Stacey,

I’ve been thinking more about time – how I relate to it – and I think I was too flippant in my previous email.

Here’s how I relate to time:
I wanted it to be faster when I was younger.
I want it to surprise me currently.
And I suspect I’ll want it to slow down in years to come.

Oh, man, I think that sounds twee.

I might try again. Here’s how I relate to time:
It shits me. Honestly. Time shits me.

The reason: I’ve done so many stupid things in my life I need to blame something.

So from this moment on: I blame you! Time!

Because I would like that time again, Time. You tease me with the concept – but it’s a lie.

You lie, Time!!

You’re fickle too. Why do you keep switching it up on us? You take an hour away and give it back according to what? Daylight saving? Fuck off, Time.

Not only that, but you blatantly self promote as well.
You’re everywhere. You’re on my bedside table, you’re on my wrist, you’re on the microwave and you’re on top of the Suncorp building. You’re even the top of these emails always putting your two cents in.

So what are you selling? Huh? What is the deal with such constant advertising? What’s your product?

Is it death?

Good product, Time, good product.


Hey and Time; what’s with the image shifts? Do you have body image issues, Time? Don’t you know who you are, Time? Do you have to constantly change your appearance to get attention?

I mean, one moment you’re an hour glass, the next moment you’re a digital watch. Make up your mind, Time. No one will be able to relate to you, Time if you have so many disguises.

So be yourself and stop hiding behind your brands; then maybe you might find love.

Finally Time, what’s with your humour?

What’s with this thing you call ‘dramatic irony?’

Where is the gag in what you call ‘bad timing!?’

How is there a joke in, ‘He likes her, she likes someone else, he then likes someone else and she ends up liking him.’
That’s not funny, time; really not that funny.


PS And OCD is just Time offering a no-win duel. This is what Time would say if you challenged it:

Time – Do you want to fight me? You can fight me if you want. Pistols at Dawn. But apologies in advance - I might be late.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

85th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Thursday June 21st, 1999 10:31AM
Subject: RE RE RE Matrix and Election


Sorry my last message did sound curt

(message to self; if you ever have a son - never call him curt…)

(message to self; stop writing message to self!)

It’s no excuse but I have been preoccupied.

It’s funny – in regard to time – I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. I think of it as night and day. That’s about it.

Anyway, sorry I have to dash. I’ll write more soon. I promise. What are you doing this weekend?


PS sounds like you have some form of OCD.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

84th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Wednesday, June 20th, 1999 22:52 PM
Subject: RE RE Matrix and Election

Hey you must be really busy…three days between emails and such a short one…Are you busy? Working…? In love…?...You know!!??

As for me…I’ve had too much time on my hands...getting less hours at the bar…thinking of quitting anyway…not sure how good it is for my world view…

Not sure what I’d do if I quit, though…

…of course I shouldn’t be pre planning or looking forward…as you well know my anxiety will creep in and dominate…but I have to admit that, lately I’ve been thinking more about what I want to do…time has become kinda odd…

I have such a fucked up relationship with time…I try ever so hard not to look at the clock or count seconds…for I know if I do, I might not stop…

Sometimes I even will time to go faster…

…indeed…here’s a confession…as much as I state I live in the moment…I often exist a few beats ahead of myself…

I’m generally thinking of my next action…

…for example…I’m making a cup of tea …but my head is actually contemplating sitting down after making the tea…I’m ahead of myself…

…this makes me clumsy…I drop things…I trip…..I cut or burn myself…see, I’m actually not in the moment…so I crash against it…

I suspect this has to do with chaos…and if I can control it a little then maybe I have purpose, intent and place…

I do this when crossing the road…do you do this…?

What I do is I watch the cars driving past…I see a gap in the traffic…I cross…

…but as I’m crossing I’m one step ahead again…I see myself on the other side of the road…but I’ve placed a rule on it…I’ve made a deal…the deal is to get across that side of the road and beyond that tree before that fast approaching sedan passes me…

(and here’s the kicker)

… if I don’t get to the tree in time…something awful will happen…I’ll lose my job…my house will be robbed…someone I know might even die…

Isn’t that mad? For a moment I truly believe I have the fate of another in my hands…of course rationally I know this is not the case…but as I stand on the kerb…I think I might be some sort of god…and I mean that with no sense of self importance :)

Anyway…I’ve taken too much of your time…I hope you’re having a damn fine happy sexy time…

S xx

PS I thought Election was a little smug…it felt like it was film scared of women…Matrix on the other hand…

Sunday, October 24, 2010

83rd email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Wednesday June 20th, 1999 18:03PM
Subject: RE Matrix and Election

Election gets my thumbs up. Ah Tracy Flick.


PS I don’t really have a recipe. But basically it’s a bit of everything. Anchovies, Olives, tomato paste, onion, garlic, capers, basil and chilli – all whored up.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

82nd email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Sunday, June 17th, 1999 23:11 PM
Subject: Matrix and Election

Hi Dom,

Okay…extra writing as promised…

Marcus has gone to bed…he’s not sleeping…reading…he always needs to read before going to bed…I mean…MAN! I only stay two nights a week and he reads…?

I think he’s reading Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago…at the moment…such good bedtime reading…such sweet dreams…

…and he’s been reading it for a while…

the book’s been on the table for ages, I reckon…it’s covered in dust…

sometimes I check to see how many pages he reads…(he’s a dog earer)…and I swear over the last few days he’s been going backwards…

Anyway he’s on this Russian kick (hence me, I guess) he brags that he can read Russian…but his stressing is all wrong and I can’t understand a word he’s saying…

I wonder if he’s asleep yet…?
I’ll go look…

Okay, back…he’s asleep. Got myself a glass of wine and checked how many pages he’s read – three btw…

Back to you…and your new lady…

I must admit…I did see you and Elsa coming together….i think I saw it last week…she looked at you in a way that every girl knows…and when she went off with ‘keith’ (was that his name…?) I could tell she really wanted to go off with you…

It’s ‘cause you make her laugh…that’s why…

…a girl is a sucker for a guy that makes her laugh…and the fact you still had wit while tripping…wow, that’s impressive…

And she knew that…she knows that you can be really funny…and when she laughs at your jokes…she really laughs…her hair flips and her head tilts back…it’s pure joy…

Anyway, picked it…even told Marcus…he didn’t pick it of course…he thought you might be gay…he even had a moment of jealousy…’you never laugh at my jokes that way…’ he said…

So we had an argument…

Not sure why I’m telling you this…

…anyway you looked good together…you looked happy and again….the night was lovely…so a big thanks from Marcus and me…

Speak soon

PS can I have the recipe for the pasta? If it’s a secret, that’s cool…it’s just I really liked it and thought I could cook it home…

PPS We saw two movies, if you’re interested - Matrix and Election. One was good, one was bad. You pick

Sunday, October 17, 2010

81st email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Sunday June 17th, 1999 16:41PM
Subject: RE Thanks for dinner

Weird about me and Elsa, huh!?
I didn’t see that one coming.


PS No more Hitler. Oftenbark now waves a sad farewell to lost lovers. It's so much better.
Thanks for the suggestion.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

80th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Sunday, June 17th, 1999 13:52 PM
Subject: Thanks for dinner

Hi Dom, thanks so much for last night…It was a lot of fun…your cooking was great…the company was great…and…


…there was the smell of garlic and love in the air…
Bravo, sir…

I think you and Elsa make a great couple...

You looked really good together…I guess you’ve known each other for a while…so there’s an ease…you looked like you’d been a couple for years…

I kinda envied it…Marcus was so stiff…he finds it hard to play that celebrity head game…I guess he thinks it’s trivial…why would someone be Oprah when they can be Trotsky…

but you and Elsa were on fire…you got your celebrity so quickly each and every time…I’d hate to play you guys in Pictionary…

Hey I also saw you two holding hands under the table by the way…you don’t need to be shy in front of me…I thought it was kinda cute…

…anyway can’t write too much now…Marcus wants to go to the movies…

he says thanks too by the way…though he thinks you’re a bit of a ‘perv’ (his words) for liking that euro sleeze…(though I thought it was sweet that Elsa feel asleep in ‘Your vice is a locked door and only I have the key’…what a title…)

I’ll write more when he’s gone to bed…

S xx

PS I loved Oftenbark too…he is so cute…I can’t believe that he falls down dead when you say ‘bang’...

…also love the broken legs trick…very funny…maybe the Nazi salute is a little off…perhaps you could substitute the gesture as a romantic wave to someone as they sail away on a cruise…

And may I suggest Bon Voyage as a verbal signal to the trick and not Heil Hitler

Unless of course you’re waving goodbye to Hitler…and if so I wonder what cruise liner he’d use…the SS something or other no doubt…

…and I wonder what dinner time he’d select…I wonder if he’s a late eater…and I wonder if at some point (through force of habit) he’d invade the Captain’s table and burn alll the company’s pamphlets…

…okay need to stop typing now…

…and big thumbs up from me again RE The Elsa Adventure…proud of you, sir…

Sunday, October 10, 2010

79th email

From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Friday, June 15th, 1999 21:21 PM
Subject: RE RE RE coming down

Cool looking forward to dinner and looking at some of those pictures you drew with Elsa…

…I think I dated someone like Keith a couple of years ago…only difference – he spent longer in the bathroom than I did…he liked mirrors too and on this fateful Sunday in 1997…he declared that reading was for suckers… so I dumped him…

I then went straight to Book Nook and bought my first anthology of Lorca poems…

Lorca was a far better boyfriend that night
than he ever was…
See you Saturday.


PS My favourite Lorca:

If I am dying,
leave the balcony open.
The child is eating an orange.
(From my balcony, I see him.)
The reaper is reaping the barley.
(From my balcony, I hear him.)
If I am dying,
leave the balcony open.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

78th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Thursday June 14th, 1999 11:21AM
Subject: RE RE Coming down

Yeah spoke to Elsa this morning.

She is going to be here on Saturday. She’s looking forward to catching up too – in a vino-way.

And yeah she did get together with the goatee, square glass, short-haired guy (though I think he’s actually going bald).

They came home together and emerged from her bedroom around 5:00 the next afternoon.
And you are so right. He didn’t shower.

Instead while she was in the bathroom, I had to make polite conversation with him in the kitchen.

I mean I’m always quite hospitable to the guys she brings home. I always offer a cup of tea. I always initiate polite conversation. And in one case, I can actually become their friend (that’s how I met Crisps – ending up talking for hours and playing Myst – Elsa got a little jealous – which I understand.)

But this guy – man… his name was Keith for a start. He was so caught up in himself. He’d lived in Sydney for a few years and felt so superior. He was constantly talking about the clubbing scene and how Sydney was so much better.

And his voice! He had this annoying accent that was sorta fey, nasal with English try-hard tones. I think he’d excuse his accent as trans-Atlantic. And I agree on this definition as it does sound like he’s drowning.

And how he sipped his tea;
A morse code of slurping (…---…)

And he had no interest in me either – not just me, but no interest in talking about anything but himself.

And as part of this ‘me-me-me’ conversation - he went into great detail about the night he shared with Elsa.

“Man, I’m a really giving lover…”

“Man, I think she liked it when I kissed her back. She said my lips were the best. And she liked my goatee as it touched her skin. It gave her goosebumps.”

“Man, I can control my orgasm. I’ve got this strong mental life. I think of rocks and streams and moss. I can go for hours.”

And this was only the printable stuff.
It was relentless.
I didn’t want to hear it.

I’ve known Elsa for a few years. We went to school together, made each other laugh and have found a content place of friendship. Sartorial, I guess. Sorry mean sorority –- sisterly -- I think sartorial means something to do with clothes making.

Anyway he went on and on. I was truly starting to think of ways I could kill myself to get out of the conversation when he said:

“You know it’s so hard having this face. People judge you because you’re so good looking. I wish I had a normal face. An ordinary face. I wish I had a face like yours…”

I lost it. I told him to get out. Get out of my house. He looked shocked. Not sure what to do. I said, ‘I’m serious – get out of my house before I hurt myself!’

Then the conversation went something like this:

HIM: Can I ring a taxi?
ME: No.
HIM: Can I finish my tea?
ME (Grabbing his tea and glugging it down myself): No.
HIM: Can I say goodbye to Elsa?
ME: When was the last time you were in a bathroom?
HIM: I can wait ‘til she gets out.
ME: You can wait outside.
HIM: But it’s cold.
ME: Use your strong mental life and think of summer.
HIM: But I only use my mental life when I’m having sex.
ME: Well then - go fuck yourself.

He didn’t know what to say to that. He blinked a couple of times, shuffled in his seat. I called to Elsa:

ME: Keith’s leaving, Elsa.
HIM: Tell her to ring me.
ME: Keith’s wants you to ring me.
HIM: Should I leave my number?
ME: No need. As you seem to be the only person in the world, you must be the only person in the phone book, right?
HIM: What’s that mean?
ME: It means Goodbye, Keith.

At this point I open the door and offered some sarcastic gesture.

I think I bowed.

Keith shuffled out. He was about to speak one final time. I said:

ME: Let’s not use words.

And I closed the door on him.

Once he was gone, Elsa came out of the bathroom. She was still dressed. I thought she’d be angry.

But she was relived.

She was hiding in bathroom, waiting for him to go.

She apologised but she had put up with Keith for hours. He kept sleeping, snoring and scratching. The sex was dull and his penis was quite thin (her words – not mine)

I asked, ‘how thin?’

And she started doing a drawing. I started drawing too and for the rest of the evening we pissed ourselves laughing over a sketch pad full of embarrassing male members.

Anyway – why did I start this? Oh yeah – Elsa will be there on Saturday night for dinner.

Looking forward to it.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

77th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Wednesday, June 16th, 1999 14:44 PM
Subject: RE Coming down

Hey…haven’t been online for a few days…so sorry for the lack of response…been a shitty week…working long nights…the fun drunks where so playful…one tried to accidently kill himself by running in front of traffic…

what a wonderful game that is…

I even tried to write a song about it; thought was okay until I realised I’d just rewritten Gordon Lightfoot’s “Simple Man”.

And as for last Saturday…? Yeah it was a good night…really cool night…I have to say I do like those nights…sorta sits with my personality of being in the moment…because I truly am when I’m on e…in the moment…you know…

And I thought Elsa seemed like a top chick too…I’m sure we mainly connected because of the night…but I did enjoy her company…

Did she end up getting together with that guy? He was really keen…though I have to say the goatee and short hair and square glasses feels so east coast try-hard…plus I don’t think looking ‘good’ is an excuse for not showering…

Looking forward to Saturday by the way…will Elsa be there? It’d be good to meet over a bottle of wine this time…


PS So sorry for asking you ‘if you were there because of me’ so indulgent… feel like a real solipsist for asking (guess who just learnt a new word)… I can get so caught up in myself…slap me next time…or if that seems weird (man on chick violence) just ask some random chick to slap me instead…

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

76th email

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Sunday June 13th, 1999 15:06PM
Subject: Coming down

Okay, I’m coming down hard. You too I bet.

But it was great to bump into you at the dance party (what did you call it) The 1999 annual glow sticks and herpes ball. Small world, hey.

And I’ve been thinking about the question you asked;

“Was I there because of you?”

I’ve been thinking about this for the past couple of hours and I’m actually not sure. This was my thought process:

It was a Saturday night.
I didn’t have anything to do.
Elsa (flat mate) asked if I wanted to come. I thought about it. I had never been to a dance party before. I’m a little Amish about hallucinogenics. I’m a little bit of a control freak - as you’ve probably guessed.

I’d also hate to giggle while raising a barn (and deep down I’m a little scared of men circumference beards)

But whatever. Fight your fear, right?

So I took the drugs.
I was still a little scared.

Then I felt good. I felt really good.

I loved my teeth.
I loved washing my hands.
I loved those dancing around me. Though didn’t think of them as individuals – more like a one big person.

I loved the music - Buscemi, Fila Brazillia and demitri from paris…

I loved the moon. I really loved the moon. Thought it looked ‘like a big boiled egg’ as you’d say…

Then I saw you and Marcus. I loved you too.

Of course I guessed you might be there. But I didn’t look for you. That wasn’t the point. I guessed I might bump into you. And if I did that was a bonus (oops - wrote boner there initially).

But, after all that and deeply reflecting about your question – was I there because of you?

Answer: I don’t think so.

That being said – what a beautiful dawn, hey? It was chilled and pink and marvellous. I had such excitement of the new day – a new world. And you looked so happy with Marcus. His shoulder really suits your head.

But I do feel a little shitty now – tried washing my hands again and it wasn’t the same. I might go back to bed.


PS Elsa thought you seemed like a really nice person btw.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

71st to 75th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Thursday, June 10th, 1999 23:41 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE New string of conversation

Sounds cool…when?

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Friday June 11th, 1999 9:37AM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE New string of conversation

Well, I know it is short notice but what you doing over the weekend?

Saturday night I’m free.

My flatmate, Elsa is going to some dance party – so she won’t return until 8:00am (all happy and thirsty with glow sticks in her back pocket and herpes on her lips)

You can dare my cooking if you want or we can get takeaway if easier. My shout.


PS sorry for mentioning herpes and food in a matter of sentences.

PPS sorry for putting them into the same sentence.

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Friday, June 11th, 1999 16:51 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE New string of conversation

Damn – sorry Dom busy Saturday night…we’re going to a dance party too…would you believe...maybe the same one as your flat mate…

The Annual 1999 Glow Sticks and Herpes Ball, right?

What about next weekend?

From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Saturday June 12th, 1999 11:01AM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE New string of conversation

Excellent – next Saturday it is. I’ll do my version of penne puttanesca. Or as it’s literally translated - prostitute pasta.

Though I should warn you my version of penne puttanesca is a cheaper version – so I call it: St Kilda-penne.

Say 7:30 – my address is 4/15 Albert Street West End.

Looking forward to it.


----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Saturday, June 12th, 1999 14:44 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE RE New string of conversation

Me too…we’ll bring the wine.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

70th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Wednesday June 9th, 1999 8:05AM
Subject: RE RE RE New string of conversation

I think I will die drowning while filming a water safety commercial…

Accidentally stabbing myself with a chained pen in a bank as I cash a birthday cheque…

Dying of old age at my computer while waiting for some massive cartoon attachment that’s not even funny…

Being beaten to death by an idiot while wearing I’m with this idiot T-shirt…

Misjudging the time and being hit by a bus that I thought I was running late for.

Tripping and smashing my head on the footlights as I run onto the stage of some profit share production of Waiting for Godot yelling at the tramps – stop this show it’s killing me!

Forgetting how to breathe for that minute too long.

Electrocuting myself as I try to make a boat out of toast in the bath.

Mistaking the sign that reads ‘koalas cross here at night’ as a caution to motorists not as warning about rage.

In Italy. I don’t care of what. Just wouldn’t mind dying in Italy.


PS And speaking of things ‘Italy’ (gotta love that segue) I adore those Italian Thrillers too.

Crisps (the guy whose party we met at) is a real trash fan – I think it comes from being British and a childish curiosity about the Video Nasty boom. I think he listed and sourced them all.

He shared it with me and I got obsessed too.

And at the fear of sounding educational again (I so want to be Mr Chips. Indeed so did Crisps. That would make him Crisps Chips – message to self; do something about you’re a.d.d for Christ sake, Dom – and do something about talking to yourself in print too – Jesus!)

Anyway those Italian thrillers are called Giallo films (Giallo meaning Yellow – like the faint stained yellow pages in airport pulp books).

I’m kinda obsessed with them. We should watch a couple together. Let me think of two cool ones and I’ll get you and Marcus over for Spag’ bog’ and Euro sleaze.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

69th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Tuesday, June 8th, 1999 21:37 PM
Subject: RE RE New string of conversation

Dom, actually I have thought about how I’m going to die…

I hate to admit it, but I have…

I used to I think I’m going to die in the next war…but that was flippant…

then I wanted a heroic death…a true ride into oblivion…like diffusing a bomb…saving lots of people…and being obliterated…

then I thought that maybe my moment of heroism should be smaller…maybe it happens when I see a child crossing the road…and I dash across the traffic, push them out of the way and get hit by the car instead…

I really thought that would be the way I’d go…

When I was sixteen (fuck it…I’m looking back again, but whatever) I used to stand on the side of the road for hours waiting for the child to cross into danger…I was so prepared…willing it to happen…and every time the pedestrian crossing finished its call of safety, I looked up and down the street looking for that kid-like Charon skipping my path to the river styx

(btw had to look up Charon and how to spell it…always thought it was Sharon who guided you across the river styx…felt a little disappointed that it wasn’t…because I really liked it was Sharon…felt cosy…think it was because I really liked this aunt who was not an aunt called Sharon when I was growing up…)

When I was eighteen…I revaluated my death moment…

I was really getting into sleazy Italian thrillers…and I loved how the women died in them…

I thought that would be cool…black handed killer in a mask chasing me down some really stylish corridor…I nearly escape…but find myself in the reddest room in the world…crash zoom and some glorious Morricone music and I’m stabbed in the heart…really stabbed…I fall to the ground and see his shoes….only his shoes…patent leather…and as my breath runs out, I see it fog on his shoes…getting harder to see until the smudge is only a small puff…then nothing…

But I started having nightmares…so this passed too…

Then I hit nineteen and I really thought I might die of an overdose or something…
Chelsea Hotel and some folk fucking around…me doing it…keeping up with The Joneses, you know…and there was this guy there… a real drug slut…his name coincidently was Jones…and there was something so damn sexy about the bones in his chest and his lank fringe and his stove pipe pants…and the nicotine stains…and that morning small of bourbon…

But I ended up meeting a real life Jones (his name was Pete) and in real life all that smell and dirt wasn’t romantic at all…it was so boring…and he was the worst lay I ever had in my life…

So as I near my twenties…end of the month as it happens…here I am…and now I think I might die in my sleep…that’d be pretty good.

And you? You asked the question, buster…how do you think you will you die?


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

68th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Sunday June 6th, 1999 20:28PM
Subject: RE New string of conversation

Stacey – how are you? My name is Dom. Not sure if you remember me. We’ve met a couple of times now. Anyway that’s the past and we all know what happens when you dabble in the past –

First you take your time machine.

Then you go back to the 1950s where you meet William Wyler on the set of the film Roman Holiday.

Then you convince him to stop doing so many takes and change the ending so Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn actually get together this time.

Then you travel back to your own time you discover that Hepburn and Pack are still together but their romance has died.

Damn you world.

But that’s not the worst of it.

Because of you meddled of the space and time continuum - there is now a sequel to Roman Holiday called Washington Workday.

Here, Hepburn abdicated – and married Peck. She moved to America – to Washington and lived in the suburbs. She becomes a good cook but gets lonely because he’s always working and going on interesting international assignments.

One day she starts taking pills and soon she’s addicted to some kinda of anti depressant – and before too long – while he’s away on a trip (ironically in Rome) she ends up dying from some simple but cruel head-hitting fall on the back stoop.

Bad time machine.

So you try again; perhaps as a form of punishment.

This time you use the time machine to look to the future. You set the dials fifty years ahead and arrive at the point of your own death.

You deeply want it to be grand and meaningful – heroic even. But it isn’t. You’re in a hospital bed. It’s not even raining. Two people are by your side. One of them is a nurse. And you just stop.

Bad, bad time machine.

With this knowledge in mind - you go back to where you began – trying to either spend the rest of your life not getting that disease or waiting for the moment of nothingness – always one step ahead.

So it’s a no-win situation.

So you destroy the time machine and berate yourself for using this astonishing piece of technology for rather mundane and pointless reasons.

And from this point on you realise that it’s also pointless looking back and probably pointless looking forward, hey?

So I agree. Let’s fuck the past. Let’s fuck the present and just focus on the now.

Though fearing of contradicting myself; how do you think you’ll die btw?


Sunday, September 12, 2010

60th-67th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Thursday, June 3rd, 1999 10:42am
Subject: RE RE A new week.

I didn’t know your folks are separated…?

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Thursday, June 3rd, 1999 18:24 PM
Subject: RE RE RE a New week

Yeah well… I didn’t want to be one of those woo-be-me -girls…you know…

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Friday June 4th, 1999 9:31am
Subject: RE RE RE RE A new week.

Bit confused don’t you mean woe-be-me…

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Saturday, June 5th, 1999 22:03 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE a New week

Don’t push it buster…

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Sunday June 6th, 1999 10:12am
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE A new week.

Shit, did I just metaphorically pour another drink on you?

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Sunday, June 6th, 1999 17:27 PM
Subject: RE RE RE RE RE RE RE a New week

No…made me laugh actually…I did feel like a woo-be-girl for a bit…

And I still don’t want to laugh at you…I know I’m hanging onto things and this a is a new feeling for me…but I am…

See…now I’m changing…and believe me - you don’t want me to change…

Coz, one of the benefits of only living in the present and believing in nothing is that you hold no grudges…

so normally I would’ve let it go… minutes after the event…and we could have started engaging in a new string of conversation…so with that in mind…here’s the old me…and:

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Sunday, June 6th, 1999 17:32 PM
Subject: New strong of conversation

…a new string of conversation…we can now start again…

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Sunday, June 6th, 1999 17:33 PM
Subject: New string of conversation

Sorry meant to say ‘string’… not ‘strong’….

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

59th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Wednesday, June 2nd, 1999 23:00 PM
Subject: RE a New week

Is horror at fang rock the one in a lighthouse…?

If so I do actually like that one. The lighthouse keeper with a beard, huh…? Actually are any of them clean shaven – surely being a lighthouse keeper means you have to have a beard, right?

God, I’m beginning to sound like you…

…If that was the one, I found it really frightening…he had a mad, evil look…and though I actually find ‘doctor who’ really embarrassing most of the time…that one scared me…

I think my folks were splitting up when ABC played it and to offer more punishment I sat down to watch it…I kinda thought me father was the creature…or the lighthouse…daddy’s phallus…or something like that…

Anyway I haven’t thought about it in years…

I actually remember thinking while watching it - well it’s not the end of the world, Stacey…at least you don’t live in a lighthouse or are crashing on rocks…or live in Victorian times…or are being possessed by some evil creature…or are fighting for your life against some inflated afternoon-made monster created by the BBC props department…

…all I am is a chick whose folks are going their separate ways…and good on them…for if they stayed together I’m sure she would possess him or he would try to kill her or both would crash into each other’s rocks at some point…

After they split, I didn’t watch doctor who anymore…see my mother thought TV was generally bad and though ABC was acceptable…she really meant ABC news was really acceptable…so TV just slipped away…

…but I found books then…

my mother approved…and I guess it’s hard to beat bronte…and in a way horror at fang rock and bronte have some connections… rocks, rain…Yorkshire…and a girlish yearn to kiss at least one person in the story…

Oh fuck it…I’ve just reread what I wrote

…I’ve become one of those people I hate…

…talking about childhood and the TV we watched…as if others are interested in kiddie reminisces…and I’m not even drunk…I’m not even trying to find some common place based on try hard pop culture…

See now I’m looking back…shit and fuck…man…how did you do that to me?

Anyway happy to read that you’re back, buster…that’s good…

Happy to read we’re back…that’s better…


PS I guess a good name suggestion for your next dog could’ve been Tom Barker :(

PPS If it helps, I forgave you over a week ago…

I forgave you after I read your email about the Hilton…indeed it made me feel more like the monster…it made me feel like I needed forgivness…

So there you have it…Stacey M is actually one of those foam bubble wrap creatures created by the BBC props department to scare the shit out of five year olds on a Saturday evening…hide behind the couch little ones coz here comes Stacey…arghhhhhhh…

Sunday, September 5, 2010

58th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Dom Borax
To: Stacey Marchenkova
Sent: Tuesday, June 1st, 1999 6.05 AM
Subject: A new week.
Dear Stacey,

I did opt for number 10. And it’s now one week later.

Weird week too. As you can probably guess I likes me ole email.

So it was painful indeed.

I attempted to watch all the Merchant Ivory films but by the time I got to Howard’s End my flatmate, Elsa found me being passive aggressive to some inanimate objects and subtly sleazy to others (can you guess which?).

So the computer stayed off and I embraced the world (in case I shagged it – give away!!!).

Wednesday was the worst.
Cold turkey. Ate a turkey.

And tried to stop thinking the computer was actually watching me.

Thursday was easier. I ventured out of the house – bought a toasted chicken sandwich and rearranged the second hand records in Rocking Horse from my least favourite to favourite.

That night, I came home and put a blanket over the computer because I swear it scowled at me.

Friday I thought I should exercise - so slept for the day and dreamt that I married the computer in a civil ceremony (Bill Gates gave me away).

Saturday I moved the computer into the cupboard because I swear it was cheating on me with Steve Jobs.

Sunday I chased faith in various churches to see if there is a God. (I think he was running late)

When I got home, the computer had moved. It was now in my bed, begging for some break up sex.

Monday I want to Uni and got into an argument with a philosophy major over Star Wars. Fuck, I hate myself.

I then came home and took it out on the computer – was really cruel to it -– “You think you know everything, but you don’t know how to feel!”

So I put the computer back in the cupboard and locked the door this time.

Tuesday I woke early in a fever, got the computer out of the cupboard and finally turned it on. It refused to speak to me, hovering around dos with that awful blinking silence of the flashing cursor.

Eventually it did speak. It groaned and crashed.

I rebooted it with love, saying ‘there there’ in safe mode and it softened.
And then I e-mailed you.

How has your week been?


PS I like Doctor Who by the way. Tom Baker really. Have you ever seen Horror at Fang Rock? Cheap as shit but kinda creepy.

PPS So do you forive me?

PPS I really liked your Jenny Wrangler story.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

57th email

----- Original Message -----
From: Stacey Marchenkova
To: dom borax < >
Sent: Thursday, May 27th, 1999 21:31 PM
Subject: Hey I guess you chose option 10

Hey Dom…it feels odd not getting an email from you…didn’t think it would…but it does…it’s like the last few days have been biding their time…

anyway…thought I’d drop a short email letting you know…not quite sure actually…letting you know that I’m dialling up and waiting, I guess…

I’ve only got myself to blame of course…unless you opted for number one on my list and you’re currently bleeding to death with two pencils up your snoz…

Anyway, though we are silent, I thought you might find a small anecdote about Jenny Wrangler (the girl I suggested you kill for not including me in her Charlie’s Angel’s club) interesting to help us – well me, really…through the week…

See, I met Jenny Wrangler in my fourth year of primary school…she came from America…she had a brother called Kenny and parents who wore matching tracksuits and didn’t understand the cruel notion of the rhyme names among children…

Initially Jenny and Kenny stuck to themselves…of course they would…the taunting song of ‘Jenny and Kenny’ followed them around the playground like a sick dog…

But after they came back from the Christmas break, Jenny had changed…she had dyed her hair…blonde…and…managed to convince her family that Kenny belonged in another school…because he was getting a little fat…

…now alone, Jenny set about her transformation…

she started wearing clothes imported from America…her blonde hair gradually started showing pink swirls throughout…her voice got that little louder…more earrings emerged…black leather started growing from her body…well her jacket…teased fringes of pink blonde trusses got bigger creating a massive peaked cap over her ivory forehead…sunglasses appeared on her face…even in class…and she traded in pop culture…

see Jenny had access to American television way before it aired here via mailed VHS tapes from her family back home…this power of information was a great tool in trade as she bartered in spoilers for friendship…21 Jump Street…was most desired…

Soon…Jenny had a gang…a powerful gang of pink swirled blondes who actually called themselves the Heathers until they saw the film…

Then the Charlie’s Angels club happened…I so wanted to be part of that gang…and for a brief moment was included…as Bosely…but this didn’t work for me…so in between practised shadowed poses of babes with guns gestures in the afternoon sun by the science block…I lobbied for a position in this far from benevolent tyranny of crime fighting and bitching…

It didn’t work…indeed after my rejection of the Bosely role…I was regularly cast as a villain and assaulted with spit ball pellets fired from air guns…actually not sure if they were air guns…but it was some gun-like device…

Now this daily attack finally took its toll…and I tried to form a Murder She Wrote group in response…a quieter group that was more brain that blonde…but no one really wanted to be part of it…and truthfully one Angela Landsbury is enough for this world…

So I retreated further and started hiding in the library at lunchtime…this worked for me as I was a kid who liked reading…and once you find CS Lewis…it’s hard to renter the world…

After a month or so...Jenny and her confectionary clones backed off and picked on a Russian exchange student (actually I think she was Greek…but the accent was enough for Jenny and her cohorts to believe there was something ’foreign’ and therefore ‘communist’ about her)

The year continued on…and with distance…I became invisible…completely…but in the final week of school, I reencountered Jenny Wrangler…it was a small nearly non-encounter…

but something about it has always stuck with me…not sure why…

see Jenny and I shared the same English class…and this one day in December, I found myself sitting next to her…now we’d always been in the same row…but there was a few students separating us…but this one day, a couple of students were ‘away’ (read; parents wanted an early holiday) and Jenny and I was as close to each other as we’d been for months…

Three empty chairs separated us as the teacher droned on at the front about The Hobbit….I wasn’t into the Hobbit…indeed as a kid I had a sharp sense of feet-fear…so I confess to not listening purely as a tool for psychological survival…

instead I was doodling…notes…musician notes on my exercise book…after about twenty minutes I started to hear a strange soft noise coming three chairs up…it was a kind of sniffle with a staccato violent intake of breath…I looked up from my composition and glanced across the row…

…there I saw Jenny Wrangler…her head was in her heads as the teacher indulgently and blindly read out passages from her self proclaimed favourite book…

I looked more closely at Jenny…small drops of eyeliner stained tears were trickling through her fingers and hitting her blank exercise book in small pools of Rorschach-like black puddles…

…now usually I would’ve dismissed this action as a cheap attempt at attention getting…but this time is was different…it was private…I could see that Jenny was trying not to cry…really trying…and as she fought this misery…I started to feel really sorry for her…

so I gently moved from one seat to the next, taking my books with me…I was quiet and no one noticed…

Over the next ten minutes I managed to get closer to Jenny…her crying had started and stopped a number of times…

finally I was sitting directly next to her…she didn’t notice…I put my hand out and touched her shoulder….she jumped…she stared at me…I offered a kindly smile…but Jenny didn’t smile back…she wiped her tears from her face and snarled at me…

’Don’t you ever tell anyone about this, alright!?” She hissed…

I nodded as Jenny turned her attention back to her self loathing and I crept back to my seat…

After summer…Jenny didn’t come back to the school…no one knew what really happened to her…her family disappeared…and she didn’t keep in contact with anyone…

But one thing always stuck in my head about this odd encounter in English Class in grade four…

as I moved away from Jenny…I saw something written on her exercise book…it was blurred a little with her dark stained tears but there was one thing I could make out on her notebook…one little phrase…it said…

“I don’t understand…”

And from that point on…I understood…I understood that even Jenny got confused…and if she got confused…there was hope for all of us…

Anyway…hope you have a good week and hear from you on Tuesday, I guess…

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