Mr. Sinha with Holly - 1999.
Such is my pleasure at this felicitous occasion that I’ve been making proud announcements across the breadth of my vastly limited social sphere.
Yesterday as mum was watching cricket and pa was forwarding bawdy jokes to family and friends to let them know we’re all well and able, among other things, to appreciate putrid internet humour, I burst upon this gentle familial scene with my breathless news.
H: “Indra Sinha’s been long listed for the Booker Prize!”
Ma raised an eyebrow. Should I know more about this Indra boy?
Pa put on his pissy-face. “Who’s this Indra chap?”
A legend to begin with, parents.
Oh sorry. Rephrase: A fifty plus, married man with several children and a dog, living at a reasonably safe distance in the south of France, who happens to be a writer.
Somewhere, deep in my head, I truly believe that my discovery of this star is intimately linked with the Booker Prize longlist in the Larger Scheme of Things.
It is with such idolatrous affection as only a fledgling poseur pimp can feel for a stalwart Madame running for Entertainer of the Year, and much skippety-twirly-go-round delight in my heart, I share with you, beloved readers, a most fortuitous coincidence – our own little cause for celebration at Shout – our 100th post, TA DA!
On this occasion, brimming as I am with goodwill spurred by Mr. Sinha’s success and my prolificity, I’ve also decided to be gracious about a certain tag that the lovely Pinay in Barnsley has clipped to my tail. Arse.
So it goes:
I must give you a glimpse of H. Preferably with a photograph or forty, and the correct spelling of my name, because David Airey says:
”Putting a face to the name of someone you haven’t met helps recognition and adds a more personal feel to your conversations.”
Given that I’m so anal about protecting my anonymity, obviously Mr. Airey and I do not share similar views on blogging and its effect on our social lives, making this tag a serious challenge to my staying-gracious-power. I mean, really, who asked me to go and stick my fingers in my nose and say, “Thank you very much, I’ll do it”?
But then again, I do like Madonna [of Barnsley.]
I thought hard. I wandered up all sorts of dusty galis, seeking to scavenge off bits of myself, wondering what to put here in a little self-pimping carnival – should I write you bits from my diaries as I grew… But my head leapt up at me before I could complete the thought. Shuddersomeshite noh! I’d rather be slow roasted on a skewer. Next I wondered if I should I treat to you a little biopic of how H transformed from a villainous looking child to a blimpy teenager and leave it there, for you to imagine the now-in-full-bloom scat-creature? Boooooooooring. After which my head threw up another sparkler – Should I write you a little fable?
Thankfully, I didn’t have time to respond to this last one.
For as I was contemplating all of this, I happened not to feel the ground shift, I happened not to see the sky curl up and I happened not to hear the beasts panic. What I did feel perhaps, and I can’t ever be sure, is the little oval heat of a soft kiss on my brow.
You can imagine the shock I received when I looked up to see that everything had turned around. My world. My head. My toes.
The pixel of my dreams had changed. Irrevocably.
So that’s why, in celebration, my dollies, here’s a magnificent poster that might tell you a bit about H, if you’re sharp. It’s been created by U, who is the photographer and designer of this piece of trash-art. He thought I was potty to suggest this Campbell soup, H-imprinted, self-adoring artwork. But you’d know why, right?
H. by U.
Yay! For returning to myself.
Yay! For Indra Sinha and his “scabrously funny” book that I hope will achieve more than what Sunil ever imagined.
Yay! For a spanking fresh start.