Archive for July, 2011

The Church of the Electric Street Lamp

So..there it is….you know how I work now. I saved Andy. We are friends. He has no idea it was my sweet self who saved him. How was the Ben and Jerry’s?  I forgot to tell you that I am prone to the odd piece of bad language….but it’s only when I’m angry. I do so heartily apologise if I made you splutter on your ice-cream. 

Now…my second case was perhaps a little more complex…because I had TWO people to rescue. Two lovers. Love is the strongest of emotions….I doubt that anyone with any sense would argue with that….and because of my intelligence I learned this from an early age.

Come hither…come and see what I had to do 168 years ago….1843. Medway. Kent

At this stage…though…I hand you over to my trusted overseer and chronicler…the Scruffy Duck. Aha…I bet you were wondering where the Scruffy Duck came in? xxx

They were seated on a pile of boxes not far from the water’s edge. The young girl was crying. The well-dressed man held her hands and looked into her eyes. They were in earnest conversation. A cricket ‘sang’  in the long grass behind them. It was June.  The girl’s tears trickled over her man’s clasping hands

‘Excuse me’  came the  interrupting voice from behind them…startling the pair of lovers enough to drag them from their serious conversation. They stared at the new arrival. ..this strange thing…person…resembling a girl…a strange-looking girl indeed.

‘Please listen to me’  the new girl said

‘Now…I know you’re going to wonder what’s happening here…and I know it will be pretty damn hard for you to understand…so let me just kick in…and try to explain’

The man…William…raised himself up to ask a question.

‘Who in God’s name are you?’  he asked…waving a roll of white tape in his wet hands

‘I’m Italix the Scruffy Duck….I know what you are going through and I would like to help’

‘Italix the Scruffy Duck? What kind of name is that?’

It’s a long story…but I am here to rescue you’

‘From what?’ asked William

‘From yourselves….I’m from the future’

‘Like a ghost?’ asked the girl

‘No Ann…a ghost is from the past…I am from the future…and I know what you want to do. I’m here to convince you it’s not what you want to do’

‘How could you possibly know what we are going through? asked William

‘Just bear with me…both of you…I am trying to help…to be a friend’

‘We will listen to you…but we won’t be fooled by whatever is happening here. I’m confused….I know that Ann is confused. Just say your piece’

‘Thank you….I’m called Italix…and I’m definitely from the future….trust me on that. I found out about your plight through a poem by a man who lives in MY time.Listen…and I will tell you about the first person I saved like this. His name was Andy. I saved Andy and he went on to be my friend. I could show you pictures…but I don’t have my iPhone’
‘Your eye phone?’
‘It doesn’t matter….Andy went on to have a long life. He’s still living now…in 2011. I had to save him twice. Once in 1991 and once in 2010. His wife…Rio…died in 2010…very young. She was my friend too. Andy almost went the same way. The thing is…we have all lost people who are close to us and we have to make our decisions based on fact….and on what we know has to happen. When a grandparent dies it is very sad…of course…but you kind of accept it because they have lived long and they are close to rest. You know that they would be angry at you for morphing into an ever-lasting mourner.’
‘How old are you?’ asked the man
‘You are very wise’
I am super-intelligent’
They sat in silence for a while
Italix was happy for them to sit and think.

The man was happy to do the talking…when they did talk
His girlfriend was happy to listen
‘Do you both like music? asked Italix
‘Well….yes….we both do’ said the man. ‘The compositions of Mendelssohn and Chopin are particular favourites of ours…and when Mozart died last year I had to take a week off work’

‘That’s lovely. Let me tell you how things are in MY time. Music is done rather differently. Local youth create local bands of musicians….maybe 2,3,4,5 people in a band. They play different instruments and they play in pubs around the Medway Towns of Rochester, Gillingham, Chatham and Strood’
‘Ann’s father has a pub in Rochester’
‘Which one?’
‘The Silver Oare Inn….Rochester High Street’
‘Ah…it’s called The Bull…in my time….18 High Street, Rochester’

‘How do you know that…so instantly?’

‘I’m super- intelligent…and what does YOUR father do?’
‘Oh….he’s a carpenter’
‘Richard or Karen?’
‘Nothing….a modern joke’
‘So….how did you find out about us…if you really have come back to save us.?’
‘Ah….as I told you earlier… I read a poem by a Medway writer called Andrew Day.
Here….let me read it to you.’

The Tide

You’ll never know how they rowed on the water
A widower and the innkeeper’s daughter
A bad match to make, a harsh cross to bear
His kissed her cold lips, his hands in her hair

He got so tired, fighting the tide
Weighed down with shame, trapped by his pride
Her ivory skin, her bright hazel eyes
He opened his mouth and he let in the tide

You’ll never know how the river, it held them
Like babes in arms, like love’s drowning children
Her mother, she said if you see him again
Don’t you darken my door with your face again

She got so tired, fighting the tide
Love turned to pain, a thorn in her side
Her vale of tears filled the sea and the sky
She opened her mouth and she let the tide

You’ll never know how the priest he heard
Their soft marriage vows, their last parting words
Til death did they part, their fingers entwined
United in death by the pull of the tide

They got so tired, fighting the tide
They both took their vows, they both took their lives
For better or worse til the day that they died
They opened their mouths and they let in the tide

The girl looked at the ground
The man looked at the girl
The girl looked scared….she was still crying.
The man looked confused
‘It’s nice to know we are remembered…even all those years later’
‘Well…don’t die now…and Andrew Day’s poem will never exist’
‘Ah…so we’ll die another day and nobody will remember us? Maybe we need to be synonymous with suicide-Medway.?’
‘That’s crazy. Think of your family’
‘They are all against us’
‘Look…..don’t be such an arsehole….maybe you wanna take your life. Does she?’
The girl looked up….almost begging for a non-suicidal resolution
The man pulled her close and screwed his eyes up.
‘ Whatever will be will be….now leave us alone’
Italix turned and walked away. She stood on the cricket. It didn’t kill it….it just pushed it into the soil a bit. She kicked the roll of white tape towards the man.
‘Do what you feel you need to, man. Just rot in fucking Hell if you take that girl with you’
Italix hoped she had said enough to save them

Hiya people. It’s me….Italix…back in my own time. Oh…look…here’s an item from The Times in 1843. No fucking phone-hacking in those days. Have a read

Yesterday morning some considerable sensation was created in Rochester, owing to a young man and a young girl of respectable appearance, having been found drowned about 6 o’clock this morning, clasped in each others arms, lying on the mud of the River Medway, opposite a place called Phillips Wall. It appears that the bodies were picked up by a fisherman, and upon his examination of them, he found that they were tied together with tape round their arms. The bodies were immediatly conveyed to an out-house at Ladbury’s Quay. The names of the unfortunate couple are William Edward Henderey, aged about 30 years, and Ann Hannah Saneto, about 16 years old. The former, it is reported, is a widower with two children, and the latter is a daughter of a Publican living in Strood. It appears that the two persons had been asked in church, and were to have been married at St. Margaret’s Church on Sunday last, but owing to some cause it was put off. Last night a couple, answering the description of the deceased persons, were seen walking together and going towards the river about 10 o’clock and it is supposed that they took a boat belonging to Mr Weekenden, that had been moored at the stage of the floating bathing establishment, and having unfastened it, they rowed to the place where the bodies were picked up. The parents of the parties are very respectable: The young man’s father is a Master Carpenter, residing in Troy Town. An inquest is to be held at the Silver Oar Inn, High Street, Rochester, before Mr James Lewis, the city Coroner, and a respectable Jury.

So…there you have it. I failed
I am happy to have tried my best…but sometimes our best is just not good enough. These towns will live on. Medway….Maidstone….Gravesend.  A lot of the buildings will live on. The people will change….that’s all.



Well…I definitely saved Andy’s life….ya ya ya…a result. That’s one that I can chalk up as a victory. I saw him a few days ago…with his Unlucky Fried Kitten band. He has no idea it was me who saved him…all those years ago. It’s 2011…I’m still super-intelligent…lol…and I can do magic. well…it’s not actually magic…I guess. I  call it IRV…which is ‘Interactive Remote Viewing’  I’ll explain more  in a minute…but my main goal is to save people’s lives…to stop them from doing silly things that might kill them….and to divert them from suicide…stuff like that. It’s not a moral crusade. It just makes me feel lush. Oh yeah…my name is Italix the Scruffy Duck. Well…it is when I am in life-saving mode. In reality I’m just plain old Bretta…though I guess Bretta isn’t that plain…compared to Jane…or Mary…or June…or Muriel. It is plain compared to Italix though. Andy’s case was a special mission for me… because it was my very first case and it was the first time that I realised   I could carry out IRV….that’s  ‘Interactive Remote Viewing’….come on…keep up. It was also special because I know Andy as a personal friend. I saved him…and decided to carry on saving others…because it buzzed me up. I saved him in 1991….but I wasn’t born until 1995. Gosh…this all sounds so awfully complicated. It’s not. Here…let me show you how it happened in 1991…with an extract from the novel The Tragedian…word for word…as it was scribed in 1991. It’ll show you all you need to know….and all will be clear…and then I’ll show you some of my other missions. Curl up on the sofa with that gorgeous cat….indulge yourself with some Ben & Jerry’s…New York Super Fudge Chunk is Heavenesque…and drop STRAIGHT into the action.


He knew that he wasn’t mad

Just very tired

Very tired


His light was going out

Andy…..Andy…wake up

He wasn’t sure if it was the surf rolling across his feet that woke him up…or the urgent vocal of the new arrival.He awoke anyway. He saw a girl in a red and black stripey jumper. She had a quiff…with a red band holding it back. She was bent over him…shouting…some rips in her black tights.

Who the fuck are you, then? Are you my Guardian Angel or something?

I am your Guardian Astronaut

From where? Where do you come from? Who are you? What the Hell is a Guardian Astronaut?

I come from your future…and I can’t let you die…on the beach…cos I need to be your the future. I call myself Italix…the Scruffy Duck


Because I talk in Italix…and if I told you my real name it would ruin everything…and you would know too much. You won’t remember me as Italix when you meet me in years to come

Please…explain what this is about. You seem nice..but what is this astronaut shit?

I am an astronaut because…very simply…angels do not exist…but astronauts do. I have travelled in time to meet you…to stop your death. I can’t let you go just yet

What about all the biblical pictures of angels…men and women with huge white wings…people saw them in biblical times…or they would not have painted them in those beautiful pictures…strong feathered white wings sprouting from angels in the sky?

Andy was very confused now. He didn’t believe in time-travel..and he didn’t believe in angels..not really. She was probably some local girl…just messing around on the beach…having a laugh. He wondered if he HAD died…it was a bizarre situation

Angels have never existed. Take it from me. Those beautiful angels…depicted in biblical images…were astronauts. It’s all about perception


Well…see it this way. Let’s go back to the biblical days. There were no photographers then…no paparazzi…everything was hearsay and first-hand explanation

I am still confused

OK…let’s say a man or a woman saw someone up there in the sky. They had no concept of space-travel….or of mechanical travel…jet-packs…not even parachutes…not in those times. They saw a spaceman…someone travelling from another time…and their account of the sighting was limited. It was someone flying. That’s all it could be…to their un-educated perception

Still don’t get it

Let’s say a farmer called Jacob…yes…let’s give him a name…sees an astronaut. He has no concept of space-travel…of astronauticism…so he sees it as a bit of a miracle…a fact. So…he tells his friend…let’s call him Jeramiah

Why Jeremiah?

I don’t fucking know. Just a name

Yeah…well …carry on

He tells Jeremiah..over a drink or two…that he saw this human flying across the gospel sky. Jeremiah is an artist..a painter…

Hold on…one minute he’s a made-up person…as is Jacob…now he’s got a fucking profession

Andy…shut up…let me continue or I will leave you to die…you obstinate prick

Jesus….I don’t even know you…this might be my imagination…I’m being beaten down by a figment of my imagination

Trust me….I am part of your future…if I let you die now…I might not exist myself…so fucking help me out here.

So…Jacob tells Jeremiah that he saw an angel?

No…he tells Jeremiah that he saw a person in the sky. Jeremiah…as a painter…wants to create a picture of it…so he paints a picture of a human flying through the sky. It’s a time when they know nothing of technology…so the obvious supposition is that if a person can fly…that person MUST have wings. So he paints a person…man or woman…with wings.

Who’s idea is this? I’ve never heard such a strategy. I have never heard an opinion like this

It is all my own thoughts

I am not sure you are right…but you are a very clever girl

I am super-intelligent…ha ha. Seriously…if I had the intellectual power to stop you dying it would be the most remarkable aspect of my very short life. You can’t die yet…not until I’ve met you

Jesus girl….what if this is a dream? What if I never see you again?

If you have the guts…the determination…the strength…to live now…then we will meet…I promise you that. If not…then fuck you

So….Jeremiah paints a guy or girl…with wings. Where does the halo come into it? Angels had wings and halos.

That’s easy…well…it is if you are super-intellectual like me

Go on

An astronaut has a space-helmet….it has a built-in light. It glows. Jeremiah….or any number of biblical piss-head painters of bygone biblical times…have no concept of illumination by artificial light….so…bang…the halo is invented

I think you have an imagination that knows no limit

Well…trust me then…I need you to stay alive…for me…for your future and for mine

And if I die?

Then I will not exist…ever

A swirl of foam washed over his confused mind. He saw some jellyfish slowly drifting towards his face. He wanted to sleep…he had a death-wish…but he also saw a glimmer of hope. What if this really was a friend from his future? What if this was just a girl who lived down the road? What if she was playing some stupid game? If it was his imagination…then…why did he make this figment so incredibly intelligent?

I promise you…Andy…that if you live…I will be the best friend you ever had…but if you die…you have let me down…and you have let your family down. Don’t let me down…don’t let your family down. I can only save you with my words…I can’t physically lift you out of the surf. As smart as I am I can only use my words. If you die you have killed me. Do you want that? Can you live with that?

Well…that’s irrelevant…if I’m dead anyway

Don’t fuck with me Andy. You wanna play the fucking hopeless romantic suicidee then go ahead…but just thanks a fucking lot. If I could make physical contact here I’d drag you from that surf with my bare hands…and you know what? I’d beat the fucking shit out of you for playing with MY life and MY feelings. I’d smash you to within an inch of your life…then I’d take you in my arms and make you better. Die now and I curse your lifeless pathetic sea-water-filled body. Live now and I see you in the future

She was right…he was selfish. As he closed his eyes and waited for the inevitable passing…he tortured himself with the notion that she might JUST be right. She might just truly want to see him in later times

Who are you, angel? he asked And where do you come from?

I was born in 1995

But this is 1991

Yes…I know…I am super-intelligent

I am confused

I am your friend…just live…you cunt