Thai Thoughts and Anecdotes Part 258
THIS IS GOING TO BE GREAT (from the Another Diamond series):
Since God (the Christian god–ya know, the best one) made everything and knows everything you wouldn't think he'd be having any trouble with the subway automatic cash-ticket machines in Boston. But they are a challenge to puzzle out in the beginning. Another goddamned modern thing we have to learn or else. Anyway, I helped him. God that is.
So, through the turnstiles and waiting for the B train. I was going to the library to pick up some 19th century books on Siam I had ordered, and God was on his way to a bedding store in Allston to look at vibrating beds. He was certain that he had created them (Eve had a bad back 'cause Adam wouldn't stop pounding her like a hammer at a nail convention) but he just couldn't remember. After he made all the beetles he kind of zoned out for a while.
He had just gotten back from Thailand and he had stories and pictures. Starting at Sam Tom, and traveling clockwise, he had visited Na Long, Wang Saphung, Kok So, Nong Bua, Loei Wang Sai, Sila, Pong Chi, Khok Ngam, the Tad San Falls, Phu Rua, and the Phu Luang national park. At each stop he would make trips to the interior of this geographic circle. In this way he could get a good review of the flora-fauna-landscape Siam he had created many years ago. He said it still looked pretty much like the original drawings.
I asked him if he had any design items regarding Thailand that he would rework if he had it to do over again. Yes, he said; there were two things. The whole language issue with the R's and the L's was a mistake. He wasn't sure but he might have also been working on different kinds of birds that day and the whole language thing got away from him. I smiled. The other thing was Thai banks. Not being able to use Thai banks without worrying about your money disappearing was a design flaw. Really regrettable. He didn't mean to offer any excuses but:
"Do you have any idea how many kinds of goddamned birds there are? Don't know what I was thinking. And don't even get me started on earthworms or different kinds of sand."
Anyway, as the subway train started to pull into Copley station I started to get up to get off. He also got up to get off.
Me: God, what are you doing? You've go to stay on until you get to the University Central stop in Allston.
God: Well, Dana: I want to talk to you. Most people when they see me assume I am a homeless person, or deranged, or not fit for children, or a wino, or an eccentric, or a drunk. Not you. You've got jai dee. So I propose that we meet at this time one week from now in front of the Copley branch of the Boston Public Library and I will grant you any wish:
Your own writer's website.
A dick that won't quit and testosterone weeping through your pores.
A gold shop in Nong Khai staffed by Khmer nymphos.
Your body (sorry about that) replaced with Pattaya Gary's body.
Mae Kuang Dam area snake farm concession.
Anything. I'm God. I can do anything. Just name it in one week.
One week later in front of the Copley Square branch of the Boston Public Library:
God: Well Dana, what's it going to be?
Me: God, this is what I want. I want to go in the library with you by my side and we will go into the general circulation stacks in the fiction area. We will cruise up and down the stacks and you will look at the titles and the author names on the spines of the books. I want you to pull off the shelves all the works of literature created solely by the writers, unpolluted by editors or outside influences. Before I die I want to know who to respect.
God: No ploblum dude. Easy. And then I'll treat you (all I have to do is sign for it) to lunch at the Thai restaurant down the street.
Me: Great–this is going to be great.
God: Be fun for me too, believe me when I tell you; I didn't create editors. That was a mutation. Lost my concentration–too many fxxxing birds.
Me: Speaking of Thai food God–the whole chilli thing?
God: Yeah, another mistake. Sorry. Really really sorry. I spent most of my time on my most recent trip to the Kingdom having cashew chicken and those little yogurts you can buy in the Mini-Marts. Chillies was a huge mistake. And please do me a favor and don't even bring up the subject of fermented fish sauce. Embarrassing.
Me: It isn't easy being God is it?
God: Well, I don't want to sound like a complainer but not everyday is peaches and cream. Wished I never came up with that Darwin guy. Who needed that whole problem? And not to put too fine a point on it, but do you have any idea how many stupid lameass kinds of goddamned birds there are?
Ok, here we are in fiction. Speaking of fiction, I quite like the contemporary American author Annie Proulx. I can't include her in your list of editorless geniuses, but I really wish I could. She deserves respect. Her novel Postcards is a fiction triumph.
Me: Oh, I agree. I believe if she could transfer her knowledge and sensitivity regarding 19th and 20th century American experience poverty, and hopelessness, and limited options to the Thai scene she could make a real contribution to Thai literary history. I believe it would be a good example. There is too often something bland, and baking hot room boring about Thai writing.
God: Right on brother. Ok, let's get started. What do you say we start with the 16th and 17th century. Ya know: Cervantes, Spencer, Bacon, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, and that lot. Believe me, I know stuff. I know all these guys and I know all these books. I've read everything. Everything. And I know everything. Everything. Who produced unpolluted literary diamonds? Who in the crowd is up on top of Everest looking down on everyone else? Get ready to rumble.
Me: This is going to be great.
God: Then we'll finish up today with American 20th and 21st century fiction for mostly laughs and giggles. Ya know, Korski and Union Hill and Marc Holt and . . . Jesus (oops), what an embarrassment that century was.
Me: I'm in. And then can we boogie down to the Thai restaurant on Boylston street–right?
God: Yeah, no problem. All I have to do is sign for it. Oh, by-the-way; I did create those vibrating beds with the optional heat and massage. Forgot. Too many fxxxing birds.
God and Dana, now what a conversation that would be.