Most people want to be legends in their own areas of special interest. Or lunchtimes – whichever has the most glory. Lunchtimes can be pretty damned glorious if you’re a top lunchmaker. Awards ceremonies and that.
It’s true. No matter how they may protest that “No no no, I’m very comfortable devoting long hours to my cross-stitch with not a shred of recognition, thank-you very much, even though I know by rights I should have won the state fair last year for my witty rendering: “Jesus On the Cross-Stitch“; Or how they cry “Ha! Not for ME the thrill of international acclaim for my radical new potting-shed organisational model – you can KEEP your glossy magazine features and jolly well tell these adoring Women’s Guild masses to stay right away with their flung panties and all“; No matter what they say, there is a small part of every person who cares about anything at all that would like to be noticed for something positive every now and again. Not always, but just when the subject comes up. Like:
“Well in the field of lawn-bowling, Roger, no-one has ever out-bowled the legendary Travis Tee. His blasting kisser on the respotted rink-head at the 1967 Tokyo world championships has never been equalled, has it Sheila?” And all the women in the bowling world will want Travis, and all the men will want to be him.
Well, it may come as a matter of some surprise to you to know that I am actually a legend. Yes, it’s true! In a very hush, hush sort of way, of course. In fact not many people know about my being a legend at all, but I choose not to hold their ignorance against them. That’s one of the things I’m legendary for.
I’m not legendary every day; it’s a part-time thing – Tuesdays and Thursdays mostly, which works out well with the girls’ schedule – but, if you are interested at all in the legendary lifestyle, here is how I go about a typically legendary day:
They say that on pale blue morns, I rise at dawn to the music of a silvery gong played by an unseen gong-player, and, as I open the curtains, all of Nature gasps at my beauty even – get this – even if I have partied-out panda eyes. For I am that freaking lovely, so they say.
Some claim I breakfast on milk-thistle omelettes and tincture of wisdom but the truth is milk-thistle makes me feel bloated and I think a good source of fibre, such as Post’s Shredded-Wheat Bite-sized, is more important first thing in the morning. Scours you out.
The next few hours of my day are shrouded in mist and mystery. All that is known is that they utterly transform me and afterwards I emerge like a Fury onto the streets to stalk and wail and frighten young and old alike.
Shall I tell you what I’m doing in these lost hours? I am getting stuck Polly Pocket’s Stable Fun accessories out of the hoover and reading news, pigeoned me from afar. (Nowadays, this means going on the internet but it wasn’t always so and I am of course, like all legends, a very great age indeed, so great that no man may tell of my age at all, without getting a good slapping for it).
These polly Pocket accessories have I been getting out of the hoover every Tuesday and Thursday for thousands of years, and it’s not bloody easy while you’re shrouded in flipping mist, I can tell you. My knuckles have been scabbed over so many times they look like ten raw baboons bums on my otherwise legendary sylphy-soft hands. This enrages me, but what enrages me more is the news and, if you can show me anything more likely than the daily news to turn a mild, minds-her-own-business-legend into a screaming roiling banshee of ferocious, earth-rupturing rage, then you must suffer from a minor sneezonal allergy for which there is, as yet, outrageously (!!!), no pharmacological relief and not even any serious bloody research into electioneering-intolerance being done…
(…And breathe… gasp through it deeply… thaaat’s it -wheeze it all out now…There we are… )
Around about lunchtime, they say, I gallop through the town on a proud, snorting pony, dressed in a lady-form suit of armour with my flaxen tresses streaming out behind me a la righteous pennants and Godly streamers and a terrible, terrible smile like a knife slash, crimson across my ashen – but still very beautiful – face. This is all true, except I’ve taken to wearing a headscarf of pattern paisley because untangling flaxen tresses for hours after an outing dothn’t become a legend much, and I’m not a rich enough to have a wood-nymph to do it for me. Legends feel the credit crunch too.
As I gallop and gallop about, the fearful people ask “Why? Why does she gallop and gallop about?” They have to – it’s in the contract for all bit-players in legends to act like morons – all very union, of course.
Anyway, I gallop and gallop, up hill and down, sparks flying from Bobbysock’s hooves and sweat flecking her withers. And I urge – oh how I urge! – the people to wake from their waking dream! Which puzzles us all as to how exactly waking from a waking dream is to be achieved. Legend has it that Bobbysocks turns and whickers “Eh?” to me right then.
Anyway, I’m still galloping, right. Scattering pamphlets about worker’s rights and registering to vote. And bit by bit, my armour comes flying off, killing unlucky cats and pigeons metally, all around me. And underneath my armour my skin is covered with tattoos of prophecies in a strange, foreign tongue known only to a very few as Pointish.
They say then that, as I streak towards the crossroads, I scream and wail such ghastly noises as would curdle the contents of both the sperm and blood-banks in the next county over’s hospital. It’s the most wounding part of my legend for this is in fact my singing voice.
At the crossroads, there gathered are villagers – some warty, some hunchbacked, some just waiting for the bus. Some villagers don’t believe in me; most do, because I bite the noses off the ones that don’t, snarling with bloody fury, as I toss my head in rage, sending noses and snot arcing through the air to catch the sun and make tragic rainbows in their dying, mucousy swan-songs.
It is said that, once the screaming is over and the noses found and put on ice for possible surgical reattachment, that I grow sad then and dismount my steed. I wander here and there softly singing snatches of songs about wildflowers and about how it’s “Hot In The City Tonight.” I might ask people solicitously about their pets or their grannies in a distracted sing-song way before seizing them by the shoulders and shaking them unhingedly until they promise me they won’t vote for John McCain. For, I vow, if they do – and if they do, I’ll know it – I shall return and flambe their babies.
Some of the old ones say that I am this way because someone tried to eat me as a baby and the memory of it still gnaws at my soul and a bit by my knee. Some say I can never be stopped, that noone should even try if they want to keep their noses. But the truth is, I just get really pissed off when I read the news some mornings.
Oh you might want to try waving amulets or garlic at me – there are some ridiculous theories out there – but only by surrounding yourself in a mound of marzipan and oregano will you ever hope to avoid my wrath when I have an ire-on in the fires of world news.
And so,the legend goes, I am doomed to repeat this embarrassing performance until the day the Isle of Lewis sinks into the sea, the sky turns blood red and I am reunited with my lost love.
But in the meantime, when it’s all done, when I have made my point and strewn my righteous pamphlets, I go home and have a legendary cup of tea.