Wednesday, March 16, 2011

RAT PACK REVUE: "Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime" ~ By Paul D Brazill of Harbinger*33

Everybody Loves Somebody
By Paul D Brazill

Even when he closed his eyes, Jack could see the rain seeping into the ceiling. He saw that dark patch spreading, the ceiling buckling. And when he slept, he dreamt of drowning. Dreamt  of the ceiling collapsing and filling the room with dirty, rancid water.  Choking him. Dragging him under.
He was getting paranoid, he knew. The palpitations were increasing, too. And it was getting worse.
He worried that the candles that he used to light the cottage would burn the crumbling place down. Which wouldn’t have been  that bad an idea, if the place was still insured. But he’d stopped the  insurance over a year ago. His invalidity benefit didn’t go far, after all. Booze, of course, and Pot Noodles. Maybe the odd cheese and onion pie.
When the winter kicked in, his arthritis bit like a beast and he stayed in bed as much as possible, with a bottle of whisky as a teddy bear.
The whisky was his friend most of the time. Bringing him welcome  memories. The golden days.
Jack Hayes and Tommy Morten and Harjit Singh. The Rat Pack mark two. Their tribute act was the best in Bournmouth. Maybe the whole of the south coast of England. They once opened for Tom Cooper and Shirley Bassey was a big fan.
They played hotels and night clubs.  Casinos . Tommy was Frank. Harjit  was Sammy and Jack was Dean, of course.  They were like kings. 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Things were going great until that tour of the Greek Islands. It was a joy to start off with. The audience lapped it up night after night.
Then some little arse  of a waiter sneaked into the dressing room and used his phone to record Lou Lou, the Philippine girl that did Judy Garland in the show, down on her knees , between Jack’s legs, playing come blow your horn. It was all over You Tube in a day. Turned out that Lou Lou was only 17.  And she was a he. How was Jack to know?
He was a laughing stock. When they played gigs the audience would shout out for ‘Lola’ or ‘Dude Looks Like A Lady’. So the band sacked him.
And then the house of cards fell down.
Of course, he’d never been one to save money. He lived for the moment, like Dino.
The doctors told him to stop drinking. Said, if he’ didn’t he’d lose a leg to gangrene. Or maybe both. He didn’t care. He kept boozing.  And when the time came, he let them  do it without protest. Let them lob his pins off.  He wasn’t going anywhere.
Sometimes he blamed the act for his drinking but he knew  he was always a piss head. Just like his dad. It was genetic. People don’t change, anyway.
The Social Services  used to send  a nurse once a week. Meals on wheels, too.  But that stopped. This was the Big Society they said. His friends and family would help him.  No wonder they called it BS, he said.
Tommy and Harjit  were in London now, working with Jonathon Ross on his television show . It was ironic humour, apparently. The pay was serious enough, though. He could have been there. If he could walk.
He guzzled the last of the whisky from the bottle . Mrs Griffiths from the corner shop  would be at the cottage in a while with the new supply. She  was a bit on the big side but she was  alright. She laughed when he sang  ‘That’s Amore’ but not so much when  his teeth fell out. And then she’d crawl into bed with him.
But he got the love where he could these days.
And like Dino said: everybody loves somebody sometime.
© 2011 ~ Author Paul D Brazill ~ AT THE BIJOU's RAT PACK REVUE
Photo Credits: Falling ceiling - Marlene Mano; Whiskey - katielips; Dino -
PAUL DAVID BRAZILL? Once upon the time we first came upon each other, that dapper guy became my across the pond writing hero, and he shall be ever still. In his inimitable being-everywhere-at-once-and-the-same-time (though never rushed or dismantled) manner, Paul's the one who 'introduced me' to Robert J Randisi. A cryptic "You should see this" note was all it took. The rest, they shall recall is AT THE BIJOU RatPack history. History's no mystery to Mr Brazill either. You'll find he's amassed a'plenty of it at just about every shady crime corner lit'site you can shake a '44 at. But with a drink and Dino on his mind, don't you agree with me ~ he's sublime?

Paul said this story took off on its own and kept changing as it went along.
I think he was drinking again. "Na zdrowie Paul!"

Drink in so much more
of what Paul D Brazill
is all about at ~ 

Thank*you my colleague, my continental pally in Poland and London. You rock so many writers' worlds, we're glad all over to have you popping up AT THE BIJOU again
(and again).
~ Absolutely*Kate
and our distinguished  RATPACKREVUE

~ ~ ~ ~ ~




Saturday Matinees too.

Be there or be square.


Always swell to see you here.

~ Absolutely*Kate,
and our swanky staff of renown


Sinatra: "If power doesn't mean that you have the opportunity to work with the people that you love, then you haven't really got any."

Opening Night: "RAT PACK REVUE TO YOU"

RAT PACK REVUE: "How Did All These People Get Into My Room?"  By Robert J Randisi,
working the lounge before he hits the main room

RAT PACK REVUE: "Ain't That A Kick In The Head"  By Robert J Randisi, paying homage to Ocean's 11, the original . . . for all the right reasons

RAT PACK REVUE:  "Who's Got The Action" By Kevin Michaels, knowin' more than the night club scene  

RAT PACK REVUE:  "STAR" By Julie Morgan,  hitchin' TinselTown to a dick's star

RAT PACK REVUE:  "OH SOUL O'MIO" By Absolutely*Kate,  mirroring more than Dorsey

RAT PACK REVUE:  "DIVORCE YOUR LOVED ONE WITH DIGNITY" By Anthony Venutolo,  oozing atmosphere, over the border






~ ~ ~ ~


~ ~ ~ ~


Author said...

Ah, PDB, what a fantastic story. Bittersweet, tragic, poignant and oh, so deep. Nice work, as always. Loved it!

Kevin Michaels said...

Excellent story about the Rat Pack with a twist and spin on it that only PDB can write (with a little bit of a nasty edge). Great flow to this one and excellent imagery - felt like I had seen this act once, a long time ago.
Well done!

Paul D Brazill said...

Thanks everyone, and especially to Kate for letting me crash on th Bijou's sofa.

Harry said...

Paul Brazill gives us the Rat Pack with his singular style as individual as the greasy thumb print on a pint glass. PDB always delivers!

Anonymous said...

Paul, nobody does it like you. I think Dino would agree if he was still around. It's a shame the POV lost his legs. By the way some of my friends call me LOLA. I guess I'll have to stop that, now. :)


Anonymous said...

Yeah Kate* we don't have to sign in anymore.

Kate Pilarcik ~ absolutely said...

PAUL ~ You can crash on the BIJOU couch anytime. Never dull moments will ensue, but I bet everyone keeps one eye open for what crimes you may be plotting. Dino would buy you a double for this tale.

JEANETTE ~ We've never had a special buzzer to get in AT THE BIJOU. Harry generally leaves the door propped open with a mop after he throws his late night parties. They're legendary, y'know. So great to see you diggin' it with the crew here again. We keep your red velvet seat at the ready.

JULIE ~ Leave it to you to pull poignant out of Paul's tough down-and-out tale. And do you know why KEVIN and HAR keep replaying those YouTube videos?

Well MR BRAZILL ~ The tribe has spoken. Your stylistic twist of tough, tight tale is an expected 'brand' in readership worlds. Congrats author-man, for as KEVIN notes the spin and the nasty edge, the imagery and the seedy side . . . we like seeing what you shake up.

HAR - 33 points on that greasy thumbprint line.

~ Absolutely*Kate wondering if any of you know how tough it is to conjure up Paul's rain'crumbling ceiling when doing the photo-finish?

Worth it though.
All these RatPack tales are.
Man, they jive.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

You really knocked it out of the park on this one. Was dying to see what you came up with and delivered big time.

Madam Z said...

Poor ol' Jack. But lucky us, to be able to read another one of King Paul's slick tales. Now I'm going to bed to cuddle up with my "teddy bear," and dream about the good old days. Either that, or have a nightmare about "...the ceiling collapsing and filling the room with dirty, rancid water." AAAKK!

Eric Beetner said...

Whiskey as a teddy bear. That's one for the ages. Best line I've read in a long while. Well done Paul.

David Barber said...

Great work as usual, Paul! Need I say more?

Paul D Brazill said...

Thanks everyone. I'm very fond of this story.

FYI: I never drink when I write. I can't perform that multitask. Not even a little un. I can't even write with a hangover.

The 'legless' thing actually happened to former Carry On film star Charles Hawtry.

Unknown said...

Loved this, Paul... 'Twas a great little piece of Rat Pack flash...

seana graham said...

Man, Paul, what with my studio, and my soggy step up to the bathroom and my recent foot troubles, I really have to hope that Jack isn't my male doppleganger. Haven't resorted to going to bed with the whiskey yet, but it's a close thing.

Loved the tale, and it's seedy nostalgic glimpse of former glory days works perfectly with where the Rat Pack fits into our collective imagination.

On a side note, it was a nice and impressive coincidence to have just come from Gerard Brennan's blog and discovered one after another that you both have a place in the upcoming Mammoth Book of Best British Crime Fiction!

I'm not exactly hanging out with a bunch of slouches, am I?

Paul D Brazill said...

Thanks very much. Glad it worked. Seana, I know how Gerard got in the Best Book Of Mammoths but I'm happy to be gatecrashing the party. It's the Gypsy blood, we get everywhere.

seana graham said...

And we're all the better for it, Paul. I must check again and see when it's coming out.