Wednesday, August 11, 1999

Creepy kid stuff

A brother and sister in search of Mom and love and life.

Posted By on Wed, Aug 11, 1999 at 12:00 AM

"Soon all the kids in England will be pushing up daisies. That’s what Girl says every night before I go to sleep. Girl is my sister and I’m scared of her. She’s seventeen years old and got ice in her veins. Tonight she reads me my rights."

His name is Billy and her name is Girl. Together, they’re on the verge of Paradise – or Hell, Girl says, you can never tell; maybe you’re having someone else’s memory.

Billy has Girl. Girl got nobody. Girl got no body. No name, no lips, no thighs, no bottom. Girl is bottomless. Like a pit. Like the darkness underneath the sea where her soul is still ajar, tangled in blue algae and bits of undigested fish. Girl is white and merciless. See-thru. She’s "as evil as a blonde can get."

"You have the right to complain about the weather. You have the right to promote Billy products when you’re famous. You have the right to help me find Mom and you have the right to tell me what happened to Dad. Which one is it to be?"

Billy doesn’t give a shit. "He is a crippled angel." He just wants to be famous – besides, his dick is now bigger than Dad’s, so Billy thinks he’s really close to a breakthrough. He might write a book: Billy England’s Book of Pain. Pain he knows. He can do pain. When he was small Dad tried to kill him. That’s when Girl set Dad on fire. Burnt like a tire (Dad’s a car salesman). Not all of him, though. There’s still some walking about. But they don’t live together anymore. No, sir!

And Girl’s free ’cause Mom took the blame. And now they’re looking for Mom, Billy and Girl are. To set things straight.

If, by some sick twist of fate, Dickens were still alive and kicking, he’d write like this: dirty old man’s writing, splashed with rage. "A man with a woman’s soul." A story about children who work hard at staying alive. Unloved, uneducated, wild. Street beggars at the corner of Paradise and Hell. Pickpockets of sentiment, filthy little buggers. "Watched by God who, as far as Girl is concerned, is just heaviness in the sky."

Is Billy the postmodern Oliver Twist in a world adverse to coincidences? Is Girl nothing but a plot device? How else would the story advance, and whose story is it, anyway? Some chapters are narrated by Billy, some by Girl and some ... well, some by nobody. A voice without a body. See-thru, like Girl.

Girl has no lovers. "I want to be a love diva." She doesn’t know how to kiss, how to fake an orgasm, how to take Prince by surprise – when he arrives, that is, on the finest white stallion in Kent. "The prince is Dad."

Girl lives – vicariously – through other people, well-tempered sides of her personality, nicely groomed young women, like Louise. Louise has done it in the back of her car numerous times with intimate strangers. She knows all the tricks: the rhythmic gasps, the little cries – head pushed back against the velvet plush seat, hips twisted, legs spread wide. Wider.

Louise knows Girl is watching. Prince’s fingers, his lips, his face – radiant with charisma. Laughing. Girl takes it all in. Like food. Girl substitutes one pleasure for another. Today it’s bananas.

"Girl wanted banana everything. Banana milkshakes, banana blancmange, banana curry."

Louise loves pizza. Big pineapple chunks and ham with extra pepperoni and egg and an order of garlic bread. "Louise is going to eat Billy’s pizza with relish ... She is going to chew on inky squid and kiss her fingers which she has formed into a small cluster as she brings them to her lips ... Bon appetite." Quick and lavish, like a blow job on the back seat. Aaaah. "This is the life. Don’t ever tell Girl. It’s a secret for ever."

Why is it that Girl – like all the girls before and after her time, pre-, during and post-Victorian, so to speak – is tortured by her sexuality, while Billy – Billy England, Billy New York, generic boy-next-door Billy, the King of Pain – is so bloody comfortable in his skin?

"I have access to more masculinities than Dad. I am husband, father, son, brother, virgin, pimp, career man, homme fatale ..."

Why is it that Girl needs other people’s bodies in order to have experiences of her own? Is it because she’s crazy, heroic, tragic, flawed? Is it because she is a Girl? It doesn’t matter. Soon, all the kids in England will be pushing up daisies, anyway.

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