The Woman Who Saved My Life By Sticking Her Head Up A Trifle.

http://okaywhatif.com/2013/09/22/9222013-writing-challenge-what-if-you-were-a-movie-character/

This weeks What if writing challenge – What if you were a movie star character?

I didn’t have much spare time this week, how and ever, I’m still going to torture you nevertheless.  So stick this one in your ipod and press play!

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The Woman Who Saved My Life By Sticking Her Head Up A Trifle.

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Since Annie and I broke up, and before the trifle, I kept writing play after play after play after play about our relationship. After play. I couldn’t write about anything else. It was crazy, as if my pencil had a mind of its own – or no mind of its own to be more precise. I thought I was destined to write her for the rest of my life, until I saw her stick her head up a trifle all those years later, before the London Olympics. After play.

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Don’t get me wrong, I made a good living writing her, they gave me awards, a few Oscars for God’s sake, but artistically I was so bereft that it was frightening me to the extent that I didn’t think I could go on living for much longer. La-Dee-Dah I hear you say, just like Annie, just another member of the petit bourgeoisie feeling sorry for himself who knows nothing about real pain, real hardship. Real life. La-dee-bloody-dah.

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Well fair enough, you may have a point, touché, which doesn’t make this pain any less real you know. Hurt is hurt is hurt. In any language. I eventually moved to Dublin in 2012 to finally get her out of my head and pencil.

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I was sitting in the Phoenix park in the Tearooms with a pencil and notebook before me, writing yet another play about Annie, when I saw my first trifle in years. Well it was actually six. Yes, six trifles had just ran past me like the wind, training for the Olympics.

trifle

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Her name was Janey Macken Street, and after seeing her running with her head up a trifle, I fell in love, and immediately got down and started writing her. Bye bye Annie bye bye.

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Janey was an elite athlete training for the London Olympics. Why six trifles ran past me in the Phoenix Park that day was easily explained – sure I had to stick my head up one later as well. She told me herself afterwards in the bar. We eventually got married. Janey Macken Street and Alvie Singer forever.

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When Janey Macken Street arrived late into training that morning, everyone had a trifle on their desk for some strange reason, including her close friend and team-mate Basher Piggs.  She’d been practicing her sprints all morning, with a priest with red trousers, for the Olympic trials taking place in the Phoenix Park later that evening.

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Her  coach, Gus the Gorilla, named for his abundant nose-hair, put his long finger up to his lips and shushed Janey before she could even open her mouth, then pointed at the blackboard.

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“The Queen is coming to Dublin. Write an essay,” it read.

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“What’s that got to do with running fast?’ said Janey but she wasn’t answered.

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Janey sat down next to Basher who was straining to explain but wasn’t allowed to by Gus’s shifty eyes and hanging nose-hair up at the top of the room.

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Fair enough, Janey thought, be like that. I’ll warm myself up for the essay by drawing a pencil-picture of the Queen on this rectangular sheet of white paper.  When she’d finished, Basher tried to rip it up into shreds. Bloody jealous he is. But she rescued it from his clutches just in the nick, and hunch-backed into the essay in a huff, beginning the page with the word bum. For spite. Some friend he was.

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He whispered –

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“Get rid of it Janey. Destroy!”

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“Get lost!” said Janey.

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Gus heard this kerfuffle and shouted –

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“Silence! People are trying to work!”

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He stomped up the training room and when he reached Janey he noticed the drawing. His eyes nearly popped their clogs. He stared at it forever and about a kettle’s worth of sweat dripped down his face and onto the floor.

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He said –

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“You better draw a trifle in front of her face forthwith or you’ll be shot Janey – shot!”

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“But I don’t know how to draw a trifle,” said Janey. ‘ I’m an athlete not an artist.’

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“Just draw!”

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“No.”

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Janey put her hands down by her sides and sat looking straight ahead, then imagined putting white maggots into Gus’s mouth. For spite.

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“Eat the trifle – it’s the rules! Tell her Basher,” said Gus.

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Basher stood up, put his hands on his hips and lashed into the facts as if he were about to go on fire.

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“The Prime Minister of Ireland found out over his tea and scones yesterday that there’s a rusty old statute still on the law books in relation to the Queen of England (who was on her first state visit at the time) and Irish people. It’s still in force today Janey, more than three hundred years later. It’s never been repealed. A Lord Barnsley was responsible for it.

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“Irish people aren’t allowed to look the Queen directly in the face. If an Irish person wants to look at the Queen then they must do so through a trifle – and through a trifle only – on pain of death.”

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Gus put a trifle in front of Janey and said-

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“Eat!”

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“No.”

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“So you won’t eat the trifle, eh?”

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“No.”

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But Janey give in and ate it as instructed, for if you didn’t obey the trifle, then you had to eat it as punishment in one go. Otherwise you were shot. Yes, shot in the testicles by the Prime Minister’s gloved left hand. She was sick afterwards, of course, for ages.

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“The Bloody Queen! Even worse than the recession. It’s the last time I do as I’m told. I tell you that for a fact Basher. The last.”

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At five O’clock she went up to the Phoenix Park for the 100 metres trials and the Darren the Donut, the man who has a different celebrity for a big toe every day, held the starting pistol aloft and shouted –

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“On your marks! Get set! Stick your heads up your trifles! Go! Go! Go!”

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Darren had told them that The Queen might look this way accidentally that evening on her way back from town to the Phoenix Park to have dinner with the Irish President, so everyone in the vicinity had to encase their head in a trifle just in case – including elite athletes like Janey trying out for the Olympics.

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At the starting line, Janey looked left and saw Alan Purple, the giant electronic frog with pink lips, ramming his head full-force into his trifle and getting down on his mark. Bad Barney, the old-age pensioner with a rat for a wristwatch, to his right, did the same.

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Janey said –

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“What the heck. I’ll do what I’m told one last time and see what happens. In for a penny, as it were,” and rammed her head up his trifle before she hunkered down and waited for the  crash, bang and whiff of the starting pistol.

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It turned out that encasing her head in a trifle lent bionic speed to her stride and she and her colleagues passed me like the wind as I sat drinking my tea and holding my pencil in the Phoenix Park Tearooms.

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As a result, Janey won the race and thus competed at the London Olympics last year, the first 40 year woman to do so. So sprinkle that on your trifle and eat it Lord Barnsley! And there’s no truth to the rumour that she trifled the Queen first chance she got. None at all. Tra-la-la.

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(It started as Alvie Singer from Woody Allen’s Annie Hall, and ended somewhere else).

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6 thoughts on “The Woman Who Saved My Life By Sticking Her Head Up A Trifle.

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