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BY ADAM WAJNBERG
& DAVID BLUMENSTEIN
May 2, 2003
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For those of you not hip to the fact, this site is run
by a bunch of people who know each other. We're all friends and acquaintances.
One would like to think it's a bunch of talented individuals from
across our big brown land collaborating to produce a top notch website
under Patrick's sage auspices, but for the most part it's just a bunch
of schmucks and one schmuck who knows HTML.
As it is, we hang out with each other a fair bit. Like
the other day, I was hanging out with Dave, who you may know as "the
other regular contributor apart from Jake". We were in Dave's
car, listening to his latest CD made up of illegally downloaded tracks.
Dave was excited because he had the LP version of 'Lola' by The
Kinks, where the opening line is "I met her in a club down
in old Soho/where you drink champagne/and it tastes just like Coca-Cola
rather than the radio version which says Cherry Cola. Dave owns a
small piece of Coca-Cola International and gets a penny whenever the
words Coca Cola are uttered by depressed,
skinny English pop stars.
I was no less excited, for I always enjoyed that particular
song. I know the square root of fuck all about the Kinks, and more
to the point I'm not a big music person anyway, but good songs stay
with me and I like bittersweet songs, like the country western classic
"It's Midnight In Montana And I Can't Get My Dick Out Of This
Cow". Basically, I like any song that tells a story. I hate love
songs, unless they're depressing or embarrassing, like most love stories
in the real world. To me, 'Lola' is a great song about a guy who meets
a big girl in a bar and ends up sleeping with her. I thought. Then
it occurred to me to ask something.
"Hey Dave -- is the guy talking about a big girl,
or a transvestite?"
Dave shot me one of those looks normally reserved for
waitresses who have poured too much maple flavored syrup on my buttermilk
pancakes, even though I specifically asked for real maple syrup, and
where the hell are my cottage fries? He politely explained to me that
the song is about a young man's experience with a transvestite. As
if to put an exclamation point on it, he bid me listen to the last
few lines of the song.
Well I'm not the world's most masculine man/
But I know what I am and I'm glad I'm a man and so is Lola
I'm a man and SO IS LOLA!!!!"
Now I had to listen to the whole song with this new
understanding. And yes, like the Sixth Sense, all the pieces fall
into place. Perhaps I was just too naïve, assuming a woman who
walks like a woman and talks like a man is just a woman with a deep
husky voice, rather than a woman hiding a meaty
penis beneath her cocktail dress. Heh-heh. Cocktail.
This is the greatest song ever!
It has all the ingredients needed for a great "I
thought she was a chick" story. The protagonist is in New York,
even though he's clearly not FROM New York. He's drunk. He's skinny
and pale (assumed as he is English), he's young, he's inexperienced
and he's latently homosexual (assumed as he is English). Hell, the
title character is even an aggressive transvestite, which makes it
all the funnier! And there's not a touch of irony in the lyrics: the
narrator had been genuinely smitten by the woman with the "dark
brown voice". Upon reflection, that particular description takes
on a whole new meaning which is both fascinating and vomit inducing.
I am officially placing this song amongst my favorite
songs, a list that shifts in content more often than the Super-Sargasso
Sea. The only song funnier is "Sunday Bloody Sunday",
which I always assumed was a light-hearted romp about someone ruining
their sundae by accidentally bleeding into it, and then I learnt is
actually about a day of bloodshed in Northern Ireland. Classic!
Lenny's mum's name is Lola. She's a lovely, generous
lady, but she's always trying to set me up with Jewish girls.
And it's not like she actually knows these girls: she
meets them while she's out shopping in Glenhuntly Rd. She's previously
tried to get me to meet the girl from the bakery, the girl from the
toy shop, the girl from down the street, the girl from the supermarket...
She used to do this to all of us -- Lenny, me, Ben --
but Lenny got in a steady relationship (or possibly acted like it
was a steady relationship for Lola's benefit) with a shiksa
and Ben went to Germany for a year. Not necessarily to avoid the matchmaking,
you understand, but this was a side effect nonetheless.
She was particularly insistent on the girl from the
supermarket (or "Jewpermarket", which is how we refer to
any such place in the Caulfield area that stocks Osem products). She
called my house one night while I was watching Law & Order and
told me she was coming round to take me to the supermarket. We argued
for a bit until I promised to try harder to find my own girls.