The Big Time
We must become invisible, travel silently, for there are forces that would seek to destroy us. – Horton, in Horton Hears a Who!
I am sitting at my desk, the next day, checking my voice recorder (it’s one of those old fashioned types, with a small cassette) when Mickey walks up to me and says,
“HA HA HA HA.”
Again Mickey’s lips move while Kookee Tweedle guffaws at the top of her voice at THE JOKE OF THE CENTURY on someone’s computer. Of course the more she laughs the more no one bothers to see what she finds so HYSTERICALLY amusing. I see her head bobbing over the top of a distant computer and her fists flashing. She is jumping up and down, laughing.
Finally the stuck record of ha ha’s wanders through a door in the general direction of the ladies room.
My eyes sweep back to Mickey.
“The Devil wants to see you.”
He doesn’t say ‘The Devil’. He says, ‘Spynful’, but you get my drift. I follow him past Agneta (who is standing on a desk posing in a silver bikini from the 50’s – I glance quickly around to see if there’s a photographer anywhere, but she seems lost in her own world) into the conference room. The ‘team’ are looking like shrivelled flowers left in the heart of the Sahara when I step slowly inside. Jeepers it’s hot in here, and I immediately feel thirsty. My tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. Her head spins on her neck, eyes missile lock on me.
“What’s this I hear about you interviewing an animator?”
“Right. He’s in the building, and I’ve arranged for Mickey to meet him. It might make a great multimedia feature.”
“Well I don’t see why it’s relevant.” She purses her purple lips at me.
I suddenly notice she has a small growth on her face. A small wart, I suppose, is growing next to her mouth. My guess is the cellular tissue on her face is revolting, trying to grow towards the light, away from the well spring of Dark Energy.
I refocus. I suppose I should say something, but I am at a loss for words, my sweat pores starting to open like sunlight starved flowers after weeks of rain and hot, contaminated air… Fortunately at this point Mickey manages to squeak something, though I’m not sure what the hell he is talking about. Something about this being my idea. Thanks, buddy. The carpet under my feet is tugging slightly, and the walls start to move in slowly.
A see an unmistakable flash cross over her green eyes. It is not a flash of light, but something else…a lizard-like nictitating membrane crossing her eyeball in a fraction of a second. I know that response very well. It means she has just hatched a diabolical scheme to teach me a lesson.
The Devil scowls, purses her lips and glares at me. “Alright,” she says warily. “But I really don’t see the point.”
You probably don’t know what the point is of icecream, or rollercoasters, or someone giving you the finger you imagination deprived hag.
I give a small nod and exit the room. The good news is she’s graciously given us her permission to interview this guy. The bad news is I have no clue what the bad news is.
Despite her motivating message, I think we can roll out an interview, a movie review, an analysis on animation – a whole series of features. Who gives a shit what schemes she’s hatching.
At 12 o’ clock sharp Mickey and I head down the red corridor of the building to NU Tube. I carry his tripod, and my voice recorder, while he carries the camera and cables. We have to go through a variety of security checks before we reach the private theatre in the sanctum sanctorum of the building. Here we met someone from Twentieth Century Hound, and a cameraman holding what looked like a bazooka, with glass on the one end. He’s a TV cameraman. A few minutes later Geoff arrives. He had a slightly piggy face with mischievous eyes, and a big, engaging smile. You can see he is a fun bloke. Another journalist appears as we are settling down in the small cinema.
Trudy thanks us for coming, hands out a press kit (my first!) and her business card. They turn out the lights and the movie starts.
I laugh out loud again and again, and make badly scribbled notes in the dark, then guffaw some more. What a great day at work!
All of us in the cinema fall over ourselves after the flick, and Geoff, eyes sparkling, explains which pieces were his, and how they went about everything. It’s fascinating. We probably speak for 2 hours of more, even though it feels like 10 minutes. BullshitBroadcasting ask if they can interview Mickey and me for our takes on the movie. They say it’s for a show on national TV on Sunday morning. We walk out of the small cinema into the sun, and Geoff says: “Nick, you mentioned you wrote something…?”
“Oh, right! Here…it’s called Simon and the Cyclopede. It would be perfect as an animated piece.”
“I’ll check it out and get back to you. From what you’ve told me, it sounds interesting. “
“You’ve got my email.”
“I’ve got your email.”
When I arrive back at my desk, The Devil is nowhere to be seen, so I have a chance to continue to enjoy the good vibes. I settle into work, and notice Mickey is already back on Facebook.
“Dude, are we going to put this up by this afternoon?”
“I dunno man, that means I’ll have to edit it.”
I think I need to fill in the blanks regarding Mickey Studebaker.