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Saturday, September 09, 2006

Dr Fatman I Presume?

Irkutsk - Listvyanka

Have you ever been in a situation where you've been so sick of the same work environment- talking to the same mundane people day in, day out, having to endure the ignominy of wearing uncomfortable work clothes (a business suit for some, an octopus outfit with a big sign advertising a seafood restaurant for others), laughing at the boss' racist comments because you fear you will be fired if you don't, having to sit through slide presentations explaining why the company stocks are so low that even possessing one of them is now a criminal offence- that you felt there was no way out? And the only avenue left for you was to purchase a powerful rifle and find a tower with a good view so you may lay waste to as many innocent lives as possible until the police eventually manage to get an army helicopter to take you down with extreme prejudice? This is the point when you should take a holiday. Before you become this rifle-wielding maniac.

The best part about going on a trip is that nobody knows you or the murderous impulses that you hide within. You can hang around towns in other countries with unpronounceable names and take photos of war monuments and menus with hilarious English translations so when you come back to the office, unshaved and sunburnt, you can force your colleagues to spend an entire lunch break looking at the pictures and feigning interest. It's almost expected that for up to six months after you return you can work travel stories into every single conversation and say things like, 'Sjfkanja? You've never heard of it? What a pity. Got a mild sexual disease after sleeping with one of the fishmongers there actually. Still, beautiful scenery.'

I think the last thing Evan ever expected was to run into someone he knew is Lisvyanka (Yes, I'm beginning my story now). Listvyanka is a small, seaside town in Siberia with a population of about 2,000. It's the kind of town that is slowly becoming a well-known resort. The kind of place where cows walk down main street. Where people paint their houses in their underwear in broad daylight.

He'd just about sat down for an evening meal with his beautiful girlfriend at an out-of-the-way chalet when he hears a familiar laughter. A real annoying laugh. Where has he heard that before? He turns around and sees a figure he recognises spilling beer on his crotch.
'F...Fatman?' he says, a strange feeling coursing down his spine.
I look up. 'Hey Evan.'
'W..What in heaven's name brought you to Lisvyanka?'
'My health. I came to Listvyanka for the waters.'

Yes folks, I'm kind of like that ghostly bar guy from The Shining. I just turn up sometimes when you least expect.

The rest of the evening was spent drinking many a vodka with Evan, his girlfriend and some Dutch guys. We sat around and listened to music and told filthy jokes that would condemn us all to Hell forever.


Anonymous broadzilla said...

Yes, thanks for sharing one of those filthy jokes with me, Fats. I believe I've been assigned the booth next to yours. In Hellllllll.

7:21 pm  
Blogger Yawn said...

Stop with the "You need to take a vacation before you suck" routine. It doesn't work- I took a vacation and I saw so clearly a bigger picture in which my hassles, pains in the ass, dick ball in the side pockets, and fuckmeovers at work were together simply a tiny flyspeck of a headache in the complex bundle of systems, patterns, concepts, and processes that is my life. $hit seems real small from far away. I don't know why, but Leonardo da Vinci observed the same relationship between Point A (Somewhere you're trapped day in and day out to support a materialistic/hedonistic, or even basic, for that matter, lifestyle) and Point B (somewhere real fu%%ing far away).

Such perspective has made me quit a low-paying, yet highly respectable job in the public sector. Too many small people to deal with in that line of work.

3:27 pm  
Anonymous One of the Dutch said...

I was going to Hell anyway fatman, but thanks for the extra push.

2:51 am  

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