Meggy Essay

2278 Words 10 Pages
III


My whirlwind translator Meggy is knocking on my door. This morning I am to meet my Dean.
‘Hello Will,’ she smiles.
Meggy is best imbibed rather than simply looked at. Each time I clock her she’s wearing a new outfit. Today she looks like she’s off to Ascot; an ostentatious yellow puffy dress, orange near Napoleonic hat, pink lip-stick, mounds of blusher - though thankfully, this time, she’s stopped short of the cheek glitter. Her wardrobe must be the size of an aircraft hanger, I muse, locking my door. Mine wouldn’t even fill a pilot’s locker.

We walk towards the English department building in light rain. Meggy offers me a spare umbrella and an appraisal of her life which sounds like something Stalin would have devised back
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If he could just channel at least some energy towards the finishing tape he’d come at least 18th …..after Jonathan Simpson the fat kid with the poor knicker elastic.’ (sports). ‘Je ne comprend pas….anything the lad says’ (French). ‘On Will’s existence in class - he’s more like a gas (bad gas at that).’ (Metaphysics)

Any urge to find a job or tell the days apart had withered, well, daily. With the benefit of hindsight, it was inevitable the shit would hit the fan. Or, in a more anodyne image: that I would have to face the music - having previously believed my speakers were best positioned behind me to really appreciate Beethoven. I was, after all, 36, shingle (sic) and suffering numerous ailments; some physical, many economic, a few psychic: I hadn’t exactly been hearing voices, but I had come to believe my potted plants were laughing at me from a variety of angles.

Truth is though, I’ve always been driven by a lack of ambition. No agency, no design; a rather rudderless ship. Or, to stretch the metaphor somewhat: less a ship or ocean liner, more a dinghy wheezing along by a slow puncture. For example, even when the Dean had assured me the job was all mine back in October, there had been little sense of achievement or elation: only that, in all my days of indecision, I’d finally been tapped on the shoulder by fate dressed up as an English teacher with tatty clothes and low…

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