Literary Event of The Century
But first, trying to get a taxi to get there... Yep, here's another E@L v The Taxi Driver story...
There was a guy already in front of E@L at the ersatz queue on Bukit Timah Rd as he walked up the road toward the intersection. He watched as a taxi stopped in front of this guy. Excellent, thought E@L, go away person in front! The driver wound down the front passenger window just as the guy was opening the back door to get in. They spoke for a bit and then guy backed out of the taxi and shut door with a resigned shrug as the taxi drew away from the curb.
As E@L came up to the ersatz taxi-stand, this guy was dithering about whether to walk away and go down to the bus-stop, and so when another taxi approached E@L put out his hand out to call it. But the guy came back with a sheepish grin, so E@L smiled and said, "Hey, it's yours."
The guy went to get in again, but this driver too had wound down the window and asked where he wanted to go. He said somewhere E@L didn't catch, and the driver shook his head and chopped his hand across a few times to signal, no, he wasn't going to take him there. The guy shrugged and moved back. He indicated to E@L that he could have the cab... E@L leant over to the window just the driver was about to ask him where he wanted to go...
Before the driver had a chance speak, Cinderella story, out of nowhere in E@L's brain comes a furious response triggered from a 2 years history of RSI hyperaesthenia short-fuse no-patience sick-to-death-of-this-crap hatred-of-all-things-taxi...
He bent down into the window and blurted out a stream of invective at the driver...
"You fucking taxi drivers have a fucking job to do! Why can't you accept that? You're supposed to drive people where THEY want to fucking go!"
The driver looked at him, gob-smacked.
"Now piss off," said E@L with a dismissive gesture. "I said, PISS OFF!"
The other guy was still standing there, as dumbstruck as the taxi driver. Gradually he thawed.
"I fucking hate taxi drivers in this fucking town! They're all cunts!" said E@L . The taxi driver slowly moved his car away, shocked.
The guy moved away too, not sure what to think, to say, where to look. Ah, that's easier - here comes the 960 bus, I'll just run a world record 100m to catch it and get away from the crazy angmoh.
Soon another taxi approached the stand where E@L waited. The driver wound down the window as he came to a halt, but E@L was already in the back seat, clicking the seat belt. "Where you go?" asked the driver, his voice wavering, a bit flustered by E@L's brazenness.
"Wherever I fucking want," said E@L ...
[Ed: More taxi posts here and here, the latter having even more links. It's a recurring theme. Sigh.]
E@L met a host of Asian literary giants tonight at the Singapore Book Club meeting, where only one weirdo was present, to discuss Porn And Singapore. Heading the show was Gerrie Lim, discussing and reading from his latest scorcher - In Lust We Trust - which I am afraid I didn't finish on time. Miss Izzy was there in her role of celebrity blogger and former FHM sex-advice columnist. The show was chaired by poet Vivienne Yeo, who coped very well with the controversial topics, like how much it stings when you get splooged in the eye, and how frequently you have to practice to get good at giving blow-jobs...
Pretty amazing that we weren't shut down by the cops! Now THAT would have been an interesting blog! However it was not to be and the evening rolled along smoothly, with only lots of fascinating and sordid details about the Pornography Industry to keep us interested and awake.
Most interesting however were the questions about how Gerrie and Izzy felt about Singapore's cultural situation, in particular the chances for any opening up, and whether Gerrie still felt that most people who live here just "don't get it" when it comes to the advantages of a society where you can speak your mind. Milos and E@L asked basically that same question.
After the show a few of us went for dinner at Menotti's, an Italian place in the heart of Raffles City. Miss Izzy and Milos, Gerrie Lim, Robert Yeo (Vivienne's father?), an exceedingly tall guy called Bjorn Turmann and E@L, who came along in case they needed someone to drink all the wine.
Robert Yeo, E@L didn't realize, is quite the Singapore literary legend, and had contributed to the recent Best of Singapore Erotica short story collection. He is a really nice bloke and suggested some interesting places to visit next time E@L was near Montpellier. Something to do with piercings...
Bjorn has just published Good Daughter, something a bit more than your average expat meets bargirl, etc... novel set in Thailand. He swears it is lot more literary and "difficult" than most of the stuff you might pick up at Asia Books or at the BKK airport along similar lines. Difficult? Well, you've sold us Bjorn. Joking! It's got a great review at Amazon. We'll be grabbing a copy as soon as possible. He has new novel coming next month, with a launch soon in Club St which we hope to attend.
Izzy was gorgeous of course. BTW her story really brought tears to E@L's eyes. Not becasue it's sad, it's an old, personal, medical issue.
Milos seemed inordinately worried about his latent homosexuality all through the evening, but we worked him through that crisis by the end of the third bottle of red, a fresh issue of Guns And Brides from the 7-11 in his hot liitle, and as the evening drew to a murky close we left him in Singapore's only homo-erotic taxi, trapped in a warp of pleasure, going round and round Newton Circle (a metaphor?), frantically masturbating to photographs of the rare Dessert Eagle Magnum.
Gerrie was, at least E@L thinks he was, keen to go out and sample Singapore's nightlight (not that he doesn't know it inside out - he literally wrote the book!) with a genuine expat sex tourist caricature; he had never seen such a perfect living example of the sex-workers' target demographic as E@L; he wanted to see whether his perception would change in pick-up bars, as E@L predicted, so that like other commentators on the sex-scene, only people E@L's age, hair density and abdominal girth remained visible to their critical eyes. He wanted to confirm E@L's thesis, that 95% of club customers, those comprised of young, slim men, simply disappear into a blurry haze of indistinctness which renders them undetectable to the critical gaze of your average objective observer.
Ah, but it didn't happen. Security was too tight, we were all too tired.
We had our garrets to retreat into, to write and create great works of literature. We are all artists you know!
OTHER MONKEYS SAID
robert yeo's daughter is NOT viviene yeo! hahaha... robert yeo happens to be the father of my best pal nicolette, who has a sister named desiree. nope, no vivienes anywhere!
Ahh, the things you are prepared to do, just to become a famed literary character ~grin~
You be funny guy, E@L.
Val: OK, believe you. Vivienne was much prettier than Robert anyway.
Indy: yeah anything except actually write for publication!
Ange: ssshhhh!! Tryin to keep that a secret.