I am a serious journalist. I know this isn't the traditional way of opening a report, but I strive to begin my articles in varied and innovative ways. The brilliance of my journalistic endevour will become more obvious as the piece progresses. I don't like to boast, but all readers will surely be satisfied by the time the third paragraph hits them... Smack in the face! Another thing I don't like doing is drawing easy comparisons, but for your benefit I'll sketch a couple. My reporting is to the world of journalism what Lady Gaga is to the world of popular music, a she-male. My drive and ambition produce nuggets of hard-earned truth similar to those which can be found up Brian Cowen's nostrils. I am to God what God is to you. That's the analogies done and dusted, now let the reporting begin.
It was a muggy evening, still quite bright, not past 8 o'clock, all memory of dinner fast dissapearing. I sat in the garden to the back of the house. Inside, music was playing. The sliding door had been left open. Carefully crafted Japanese electronica drifted across the lawn. A female vocal swung in and out of focus, clear and light over layers of delay peddles and organ. I breathed in the smell of cut grass, imagined how it would taste, and became briefly but powerfully aware of the pleasures grazing might offer. I saw myself as a cow, standing amongst my dumb-founded brethren, chewing the cud and expounding to them the philosophy of Wittgenstein. In my vision the other cows looked bemused, but one can never tell with a cow.
I won't lie to you. I was finding it difficult, looking for a story. There wasn't much going on... Wood-pidgeons cooed. The sun shone, and then hid behind clouds. I ate a sandwich. I spent some time not eating a sandwich. I had nothing to report besides monotony, which, although I enjoy very much, wasn't going to propel me to journalistic fame. However, I soon realised that there didn't need to be much going on. I asked myself the excellent question, 'why don't you just make the story up?' The beautiful sense of it suddenly dawned on me. I knew that I was destined to pull off the greatest piece of journalism ever written. I had a distinct advantage over all other journalists, in that I could side-step the ground work. I wouldn't be reporting the truth, settling for the facts, or even aiming at anything mildly realistic. I was going to produce a journalistic work... of fiction. The scope of this idea flitted across the sea of my intellect, and then back again like a flying fish. I couldn't catch it. My genius was almost beyond translation, but not quite.
On Tuesday of last week the world, along with everything on it, turned into a giant ball of plastecine. The people who inhabited planet earth carried on as usual, not noticing the change. I, on the other hand, was made all too aware of the fact when my legs dried up in the sun and I couldn't move. It is the work of all good journalists to catch a story while it's fresh, and it soon became obvious that I was the only person who had noticed this bizarre phenomenon. Deprived of all plastecine goodness, my legs had to be amputated, but it was worth it for such a huge scoop. I wondered briefly if I wasn't hallucinating. This theory I quickly realised was nonsense, and dispelled from my mind. After all, a man with a brain made of plastecine could never have the mental capacity to hallucinate. I knew then that the plastecine was real. My legs had been sentenced to exile, and the rest of the world was doomed. Who knows what will happen to us all when global warming sends in the floods?
Given that I've already admitted my leaning towards fiction I realise that you will probably feel safe in the knowledge that this breaking news is mere bum-soup, but if you do happen to get caught in the sun and find your legs need amputating, don't blame me. If you find the ocean levels rising and realise that it's hard to swim with a body made of plastecine, in a sea made of plastecine, don't blame me. My job is to report. Whether or not you listen to the information I provide is beyond my humble control. If you've read this far then I admire you. True greatness is recognised by those who possess it.
I am to the world what plastecine is to the soul.
Over and out,