Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Djinn of the Tin

In between drinking gallons of ale (my new favourite tipple), buying a purple steston and some matching converse trainers, grooving to swing at a working men’s club in the East End, and making several abortive attempts to complete the Guardian crossword with a hangover this bank holiday weekend, I have also inadvertently become a virtual spiritual guide to a complete stranger. Allow me to explain… During the first instalment of Bank Holiday Indulgence (or BHI for short), I was in The Basketmakers with some friends - reading, as you do, the various scribblings stashed within the vintage tins that are nailed to its walls (see my previous blog ‘Brighton’s Best Pubs’). Some of these notes are mildy amusing observations, others barely legible drunken scrawlings. At the same time, Ant was handing out his shiny new Moo cards, and I was suddenly inspired to leave my own diddy calling card (I had them first!) in one of the tins, just to see what would happen. Of course I accepted the fact that I might gain a stalker, or that my image would be torn up and used as roach material by some grateful stoners, but my adventurous streak won over and, egged on by Damien, I picked a suitable tin – fairly high up the wall – in the hope that someone equally adventurous would find me. Two days later, whilst slumming around recovering after another night of BHI with friends in London (see my Flickr page for photographic evidence), I received a photo text of the tin in which I had left my card, simply saying: ‘found u in this tin’. After a few seconds hesitation, I playfully replied: ‘I’m the genie of the tin, you have three wishes… Be careful what you wish for!’, hoping that my finder would be on the same wavelength, and join in my little game. Maybe it’s something about living in Brighton, and the sense of eccentric affinity that exists between many of its residents (particularly in lovely ‘locals’ pubs like The Basketmakers), which made me pretty confident that they would - and my instinct proved right when the following text exchange then took place:

‘Djinn of the Tin, my first wish would be to meet you in the flesh’

‘Ah, but since I am non-corporeal this may prove somewhat problematic.’

‘Ok, ethereal states it is! In that case may my first wish be the privilege to text you at any time as my non-corporeal spirit guide offering astute guidance! Hehe’

You may call upon my infinite wisdom as requested, but beware – I shall not be accountable for the consequences of any advice so bestowed…’

‘Your disclaimer is duly noted. I shall not squander the wish that you have granted. Just about to take my first steps into a giant purple cow!’

‘Oh Genie of the Tin, my second wish is to have permission to keep the card that I discovered, rather than returning it to whence it came.’

I shall grant this wish, but on the condition that after your third wish, you become the genie and leave your own image in the tin for the benefit of another lost soul.’

‘Oh Genie of the Tin, I will honour the wish that you have granted. I would now call upon your infinite wisdom to ask, are all love stories the same? And what should I serve for dessert this evening?’

‘All love stories have definite similarities, but differ according to the lovers’ individual experience. Personally I favour lime & chocolate cheesecake.’

‘I am most grateful for your words of wisdom this evening. I think we each choose our own paths through each experience life has to offer. Lime and chocolate cheesecake sounds delightful. I shall not disturb you again today.’

I still don’t know whether my wisher is male or female, or anything else about them for that matter, but I am enjoying my new-found status as a virtual spiritual guide, and am rather tickled by this spontaneous/anonymous exchange. I wonder what their third wish will be…

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