exit interview of VC Cusumano of A WALK IN THE PARK
1. I presume the turnaround time was to your liking. Is there anything else about us, aside from the transparency of the process, that, in your experience, sets us apart?
Yes, I like the personal touch. It's very encouraging!
2. AIDS is a subject well trampled. What did/do you think sets A WALK IN THE PARK apart from the run of the mill?
What I've read in other pieces isn't written from the viewpoint of a physician, both as author and as protagonist. More importantly, one of the gay victims of the disease never surrenders his faith in God.
3. Now that you've experienced a sub done by Deplancher and the other by Doomey, what Floorite would you rather have a beer (or chardonnay) with? Or would you prefer a threesome?
Both of your reviewers were excellent. I'd happily submit to either again.
4. Do you hate us? Why or why not?
Of course not! You've been helpful and honest. I'll be submitting again. Thanks for everything!
[DeP reads some of the exit surveys coming through of late. She wonders if the VCs feel they can say whatever they wish to say, if they feel they can give their responses honestly. Of course they do! We grow fat from knowledge. We grow swift from lean, direct, thoughtful responses from those brave VCs who stop here to offer the spillage from hand and head, imagination and experience.]
Yes, destiny or default places us on opposite sides of the Door of Opportunity but the wise understand we are all fragments of similar mind. D'accord, I like rhymes...I am a musical kind.
At first I thought these exit bits might prove klunky but I do not think that now. They add a dimension to the process. Like an extra leg or something. I like it.
DeP A Bluelight Dancer/Not a Pocketbook Romancer of The Floor
[Jesus, his jaw dropped, amazed, watches Boligard advance. He snaps his mouth shut, wipes away a tear that'd waterfalled down his left lower eyelid, and he backs his ass up against the wardrobe, giving Boligard room to work]
[doomey swipes his forearm across the top of the cherrywood, dislodging Pez dispensers and cigar ashes and capital pages and polly glass pins and bicycle cards and crumpled beer cans and army men and chess books and guitar picks and used floss and broken guitar strings and unpaid parking tickets and crayons and marbles and buzzing headphones and empty boxes of swan vesta matches and huey lewis cassettes and dice and ticonderoga shavings. he sets the girl gently on the desktop. and then he breathes deep. he looks on the girl, who looks to be out, asleep. he touches her face. he strips off his dirty suit coat, and he lays this on her frail torso. we can see the bones in her hands. her hands shakily cover her eyes, perhaps she's awake. doomey leans in close. he tells her quietly]
sa ta na ma. sa ta na ma. sa ta na ma.
[she goes into a deeper sleep, a restful one. doomey stands up, steps back. he looks around the Floor, sees DePlancher]
[we can see doomey's clothes have turned nasty. is it mud on his pants? blood splattered on his shirtfront. what's that in his hair? he pulls the pilot's chair up close and slaps his ass into it. he sighs. he shakes his head]
we've got it good in here, DeP. don't you dare go outside. it is fucked out there.
and what the fuck is ted doing? if i want to talk crazy, i s'pose i might do the same thing, eh? i mean, what's the time in... no, sorry, i mean. 1. is the underside of my balls rashish? well, no, the underside of your balls seem to be quite healthy. coolness. 2. what the fuck is going on, hillbilly? well, let me address that fucking question with honesty and fuck my ass, what is going on?
[doomey taps out a smoke, and he swan vestas it, flames are birthed. he leans back in the pilot's chair]
3. fuck you, ted. get the fuck out of my Floor. 4. let's watch the sky. 5. i fucking love DePlancher! 6. let's go crazy.
[DeP's pinning flowers in her hair. What's this? The somewhat warped and barely hanging on its hinges Floor door opens wide and....]
Doomey, mon cher! [She looks startled but not shaken or unglad. Half madness, the unexpected, the decrepit, the faint echo of a long past disco era, ghosts of dead unshaven poets, cans of expired foodstuffs, bags of old clothes of unknown origin, languages no one understands, holes in roofs/floors/walls/windows, fights, celebrations, clowns, flowers, garbage, detached limbs...these are only some of our favourite things popping up on The Floor over time. He's been gone for so long...]
Did I just hear Alice Cooper? Oh, look...you've brought us a child. [She approaches on soft foot, lowering her voice to a whisper though still looking around for Alice. Her face gets all glowy and rosy cheeked when she gazes at the child asleep under Doomey's jacket. She takes one of the lilies from her hair and places it in the girl's stringy locks.]
Is it really so ugly beyond this moldy walls? I have been out once or twice...you know we need...things. But it's always brief. At night. And I'm disguised as..well, nevermind that. You look positively bea...grand, you look grand. But tired. In need of...
So glad...[She looks nervous suddenly, acting all prim and stupid which is so dumb, out of character, and unnecessary. Wait a minute...is she dressed up in Appolonia clothes? Has she been prancing around behind that divider working out some dance moves? Is that Prince on the ceiling? The mirror ball is groaning to life. There's water dripping from somewhere in the walls.]
There'll be some clothes that don't fit you well in one of those bags. Come now, my one and only, I've watched every season of Downton and now I talk strange. You've got to help me.
Let's celebrate...oh, sssshhhh. Is she in a trance or something? You need a wash. She needs a wash. The world needs a wash.
But we'll be alright. We'll be alright. [Cue wild guitar solo. The Floor's attractive to so many talented and odd dead fellows. It's the stuffing in the walls. Or maybe it's the magic of the old mirror ball.] DeP A Bluelight Dancer/Not a Pocketbook Romancer of The Floor
[Rorschalk takes down his flip chart and aims his laser pointer at Boligard's eyes, but misses and, thinking the failed attempt might could put him in danger, he gathers his belongings together in a panicked rush, dropping it all down the wide maw of his blue and silver clown-silk pantaloon pockets and high tales it, clacking at every step of his unbalanced galumphing, he kicks open the ghetto door and over his shoulder says]
Thanks be to God! The greasy satan is back! If you come calling, get a better goddamn set of clothes!
[Before the fusillade of pez dispensers and plastic army men can rain down on him, he's out and the aforementioned articles crackalack off the flat steel door and clatter onto the floor]
[Jesus goes to the tumbled clutter piled on the tiles north of the cherrywood. He pulls the current pages of capital from the trash and ashes, and he wipes them clean on his jean thighs, straightens them as best he can]
[doomey leans forward, gazes at the young girl laid out on his desktop. he raises his gaze to DeP, and he sucks in some sweet smoke from the pall mall. he exhales slowly, enjoying the exhale, closing his eyes. he opens his eyes, gazes at DeP]
yeah, she's Torajan, from Sulawesi, an island in Indonesia, me thinks. i dunno. i am so fucking tired. and she is exhausted, dope. she's been eating when she could, but she hasn't had a chance to grab much, hardly anything to keep her good. we need juices, something other than amber. we need loaves and olives and bananas. shit. i dunno. i need some amber.
[he reaches into the bottom drawer and pulls out a full bottle of amber and three tumblers. he snaps the cap, and pours a good pour into the three tumblers. he pokes Jesus in the shoulder. Jesus is still grabbing pages from the debris beside the desk]
hey, man. i'm an asshole. sorry for all the yelling, and the name calling. i'm an asshole.
[Jesus has all the pages in his grip. He looks over at Boligard when he feels his pal tap tap tap him on the shoulder. Jesus stands, rolls up the capital, shoves it into his back pants pocket for later examination. He grabs up the half-burned Java from the edge of the gigantoid marble angular ashtray situated upstage left on the cherrywood's desktop. He pulls smoke into his maw, and he leaks it from his lips]
[DeP's takes off one of her mittens...she's wearing a kimono accented with Canadian made red maple leaf mittens...you know it's cold in here when you're not moving or mumbling, wrestling or dancing. She is doing right now none of those things. She is carrying in the right pocket of her big kimono the cap she's read almost half way through...something about dogs, though not ordinary dogs. Or maybe it's not about dogs at all. VCs are so clever. She lifts the tumbler of amber Doomey's handed her, sniffs, then slams it back. Her raised eyebrows might mean something if you could see them through her unkempt bangs. She's let herself go. Sort of. Going being relative you must understand.]
Mmmmm. Burns my lips just a little but the sensation is good good good. Like Brigitte Bardot! Merde...I listen to too much transistor radio. The walls, Jesus, these walls.
Let's have one more then it's onto these caps piling up for me. Oh...have either of you heard a stinky rumour about a new roommate? Is Ted advertising on Craig's List again? [she shivers, covering her face with both mittens.]
Do we three look like we need a doctor?
[She pauses, waiting for Jesus or Doomey to respond. Is someone snoring?]
La petite fille...she is very worn out. When she wakes, she'll be hungry. I'll see what's in the...wherever we keep things like edibles around here when there are any to be found. Make a list. I've a new disguise I'd like to try out.
Four and twenty years ago...seems like a long time. DeP A Bluelight Dancer/Not a Pocketbook Romancer of The Floor