I’m at the local motorcycle repair shop where Sherwyn, a most competent mechanic and pleasant cove, is replacing a brake master cylinder on the Blaze. He first thought to replace only the seals, but he can’t find the right size. A new cylinder is 400 pesos, just under six quid, an unwell encephalopod. I just tell him to get on with it. Sherwyn works in the open space outside a motorcycle parts shop, where he seems to buy most of his stuff, although, as today, sometimes he has to go further afield. While I wait I sit on a wooden bench in the shade and observe the street life. Baklas soon begin to appear; it’s like they’re in the woodwork.
Ladyboys are like hobbits; they have big feet. Although, and fortunately, not usually hairy.
My dearest and truest friend, my distant confidante and beloved adopted sister, Andie, is sitting on the brown vinyl sofa in my rented condo in Pasig. She has delicately hoisted the hem of her long floral skirt with one hand and with the other she is holding one of her slippers — flipflops in Filipino — against her leg.
‘Ugh,’ she says. ‘You see? My feet are longer than half the length of my shin.’
She drops the slipper and the hem and takes to regarding her feet with evident distaste, elbow on knee, chin cupped in her hand. She wiggles her toes.
‘I could possibly cut them off,’ she muses. ‘I should cut them off.’
On the tenth anniversary of completing the first draft of The Warm Pink Jelly Express Train, I am republishing this article about it. It describes an affair between a Brazilian transsexual prostitute and a Western straight man.
Poaching is essentially a romanticised memoir; Warm Pink is nothing like that. It is far deeper and more introspective and writing it, along with the later Why Men Made God, was what shaped my current world view.
My ideas about gender in particular were formed by the research and writing of Warm Pink. Although it is a breathlessly-paced romantic adventure, it required me to dig deep into the natures of gender and sexuality, something I had never done before.
I wrote this piece about a sea-monster in 2008 and always liked it. It was aimed at children and those with young minds. I hope you enjoy it. It’s about the right length for a bedtime story too.
The monster Geewaha-nalior cruises the endless blue sea once again.
Long, long years he had slept, resting on a coral beach. His head lay on the sand and his body and tail stretched for miles out into the sea; and as men began to navigate the world, again and again ships crashed into the scales of his back, wrecking themselves.
Read more fiction like this in the epic trilogy The Children of Aldebaran
When I was a child, madness was the most terrifying affliction I could imagine. The idea that I might not be able to control my own life was bad enough. But to think that I might be controlling it, yet in ways that my conscious mind would never allow, was enough to give me nightmares. The irrational unknown inside me was terrifying.
The notion that I might be someone other than the sane person I thought I saw, when I looked into the mirror, was simply horrific. The idea of losing rationality and, with it, my central core of me, that hub around which my life revolves, has always been more frightening than anything else I can think of.
French Onion Soup! my hilarious new book about life in France, is still available for free e-book download from this site, but time is running out. The offer is due to close on the 25th and thereafter the e-book will be available exclusively through the Amazon Kindle Store.
The downloads for the e-books are below; click and the files should begin to download automatically, depending on your browser.
(This offer is now closed.)
The print book is available worldwide through Amazon. The ISBN is 978-0-9565-007-3-1.
French Onion Soup! is here at last!!!! My hilarious, quirky, must-read book about a crazy Scotsman living the French Dream with his family, is at last available as both a print and e-book. Yaaay! You can buy it HERE on Amazon.co.uk
Wow, Silas Farsight is NOW AVAILABLE through Amazon as a print book. Grab the chance while you can! All orders are fulfilled through Amazon, so I can’t sign them, but if you contact me through the comments box with your address I will send you a sheet with my signature and any dedication you would like for FREE. You can then paste that into your copy. Can’t say fairer than that!
Ebook editions will be available through the Kindle bookstore and elsewhere soon!
Check the Amazon links below or search your local Amazon store.