How Did I Get Here?

14 September 2016

Oh thank god!!  For a second there I thought this funeral was for me! 

That clearly isn’t me!

Oh God, yes it is. The photo on the altar…that’s the spiral perm I had in 1987!  

MUM! Alice!  Anyone! Hellooooo!!

Okay, don’t panic, lets just take a moment here.  Sure there’s a casket and flowers, and all my possessions are assembled on this table and my family are all wearing black, but this can’t be my funeral. They’re playing Mariah Carey. 

Oh my God! What the hell am I wearing! Where did you get that outfit, Mum? Dimmeys?  I look like a reject from the FDLS Church! What did I die oƒ? Embarrassment?  And who’s this guy rabbiting on?  Reverend socks and sandals.  I’ve never met him in my life!

Let’s take a look at this booklet then. Jesus, who wrote this stuff?! Bushwalking? The only time I bushwalked was when I got lost at Earthcore!  And that’s only because I’d eaten so many mushrooms I thought I was a wombat. Liked the odd drink or two?  What are you trying to say?  Yes I like a drink.  Who doesn’t? And I never loved my job.  Exactly what part of Western Bus and Truck spare parts would I love?  Where are my workmates?  Oh yeah, the girls from marketing are here, factory guys. Hmmm, Tim’s not here but he that’s only because he saves all his holidays for schoolies week. Geez, numbers are a bit thin.  I know Altona North’s a bit out of the way but still, I know more people than this.  Janice Waters?  I haven’t seen you for over ten years!  Natalie Brady!  What are you doing here?  Those tears are so not real. You didn’t even like m…oh, right.  Scott Anderson. You’re still trying to pick up Scott Anderson. Desperate scrag. He’ll find out soon enough the tears aren’t the only thing that’s fake.

And hello!  Who are you cutie?  Why don’t I remember you?  Oh.  Funeral director guy.  Nice suit.

Good to see Tyler the nephew-from-hell here. That’d be right, drink the holy water, aaaaaand spit it at the organist. Good boy.  Perfect mother my sister. Nice jacket though. Hang on, that’s my Gucci leather jacket! Mum!  You let her wear my jacket…to my funeral!?  Unbelievable!  Kevin gave me that. Speaking of exes, where is Kevin? Oh, yep there you are. I have to say, that crying is a little over the top.  We only went out for three months. And there’s Brendan, walking in late.  Rude!  I see your punctuality skills haven’t improved. Tony’s in America…there’s Luke. Solo. What?  Too windy to bring that rake thin girlfriend of yours to my funeral? I tried the Atkins diet when we were together but he told me he liked bigger women. But I’m not bitter.  Aaand Aunty Mary appears to be drunk.  Nice. Hope she doesn’t spot the altar wine.

I seriously don’t have a drinking problem.  I don’t!  Mum thinks I do but…oh shit! She’ll find that vodka I had stashed next to my bed. And the Midori bottle in the bathroom, the cooking sherry in my glove-box. Maybe she’ll think I was planning a party…in the bathroom. Whipping up a Tira Misu, in the car.

Hang on. How did I die?  I got up in the morning, went into the kitchen, opened the fridge, realised I was out of UDL’s, had a shower, Midori, got in the car, sherry, went to the shop and got a takeaway coffee then drove to the other side of town for….for…..Paintball!  I was playing Paintball!  What happened?  No-one dies playing paintball, do they?  I can’t remember, that’s annoying. 

Oh for fuck’s sake!  Human Nature? Haven’t I suffered enough?  Did you people know me at all?  These aren’t my favourite songs!  They’re my sister Alice’s favourite songs!  I don’t like this crap. What am I, a nana? I like cool stuff!  Like, cool bands, you know, like…oh, you know, those cool bands.

So, what?  This is my big send off?  Mariah Carey, a priest I don’t know, stacks of empty seats and me lying there wearing a Holly Hobby dress.  Do you people have the slightest clue who I am…was…whatever!  I always thought it would be cool to hear my own eulogy but this sucks. 

I did, you know.  Imagine what people would say about me.  Doesn’t everyone do that? I mean, it’s not like I sat down and wrote them out, and learnt them, recorded them or anything, but if I had, the priest would probably have said something along the lines of…

Thankyou and welcome to the several thousands of you who have crammed into St. Patricks cathedral for Dolly’s funeral, and to the masses outside watching on the big screen.  Dolores Reilly was born into a family rich in culture and intelligence in the eastern suburbs.  She spoke five languages including regional dialects by the time she was fourteen and knew the names of all the Impressionists.  After completing her VCE early in year 9, Dolly spent a year working with children in The Sudan providing medical attention, and fighting off the local warlord and his underlings. In her village she became known as Halamatumama, which means She Who Takes No Dung From No-one.  Dolly travelled the world 6 times during her life, forged a successful career as a foreign correspondent and UN Peace Ambassador and made stacks of money. She had a string of exotic lovers, eventually settling down with acclaimed actor Chris Hemsworth.  Her body was the envy of supermodels and her brain the equivalent of that Hawkings guy who sits in the wheelchair and talks like a robot.  Dolly was the first person to simultaneously win the Nobel peace and literature prize after resolving the Middle East crisis with her acclaimed novel Palestinians are from Mars, Jews are from Venus.  This amazing, courageous and naturally SVELTE woman with NO pimples or cellulite definitely did not die a nobody. 

There was also one where I was a size six, came up with a cure for cancer and married Brad Pitt. All before the age of fifteen.  But this is for real now.  And I’m not hearing anything as impressive as that.

Huh? Who is it? Who? Oh, hi God! Yeah, good thanks, you know, considering. Now?  Really? You want me to go to the light right now? Can’t you come back in a little while?  Well, I’d kind of like to hear what else people are going to say about me.  Haven’t you got anything else more important you could go and do for half an hour?  Oh I don’t know, like finding a solution to  the endless starvation on the African continent, or giving Donald Trump scurvy or getting Brad and Angelina back together?  There you go!  See, you’ll enjoy that!  Alright, I’ll see you in a bit.

Why hasn’t anyone mentioned the things I’m good at, like, you know, I’m great at Pictionary! I’m really good at guessing what other people want to eat when we go to restaurants, and I have an amazing sense of smell.  I have a reputation for identifying people’s deodorant.  That guy back there? Blue Stratos.  Cute funeral director guy? XS… no, Body shop body lotion.  Sexy and environmentally aware. Nice.

Maybe I didn’t show these people enough of who I really was, or maybe I was just a complete and utter dork and everyone knew it except me.  Then again, I’ve always believed people have lots of different sides, and we show them to different people in different situations? It’s like looking in mirrors and seeing different reflections depending on how the light catches your face.  Like, you might think you look really hot on the dance floor in the nightclub mirrors, then you go into the toilets and the fluoro lights tell you that your face actually looks like the lunar surface with smeared lipstick.  And I think most people get used to the person you show them and wouldn’t want to see the other side.  Like your Nana wouldn’t want to see you rolling a joint one-handed, holding a crack pipe in the other and discussing whether anal is the done thing on a first date.

I can’t believe I just said that in church.  Sorry. 

Maybe we’re only ourselves when we’re on our own which is terrifying coz when I’m on my own I pick my toenails off with my teeth and spit them all over the carpet while wearing my Garfield flannelette pyjamas and watching The Breakfast Club.  Which makes me, to quote Judd Nelson in the breakfast club, a neo-maxi-zoom dweebie. God, I loved that movie. My best friend, Charlene and I went to see it when it first came out. Can’t see her here anywhere. Then again, we haven’t seen each other since we finished high school. Shame. We were besties, until we had a fight, then we hated each other, then we’d make up and be besties again. All during lunch time at school.

There’s absolutely no logic to the rules of female teenage friendships, but we all knew that if we didn’t follow them we wouldn’t fit in.  Being frozen out was a thousand times worse than being beaten up, and being cool and popular was everything.  Unfortunately I was neither.  I’d love to go back to the eighties knowing what I know now. Instead of my ra ra skirt and pink bubble gum jeans I’d wear, you know, punk, cool stuff. And instead of Cold Chisel and Wham, I’d talk about bands like, you know, the guys with the white faces and the, you know, the hair…

The Cure!  Thank you, God! You’re not back already!  That wasn’t half an hour!  It was not!  Was not, was not, wasn’t, wasn’t….okay!  Did you go to Washington?  Oh, you did.  Okay. Did you go see Brad and Ang?  What do you mean you couldn’t do it?  Just go and put them back together. How can you be scared of Angelina Jolie?  Isn’t there an epidemic somewhere?  No?  Listen, ten more minutes, tops. Okay?

I can’t put him off forever.  I’ll have to go to up there eventually.  Hey, I wonder if I’ll be in the cool group in heaven!  Maybe I’ll bump into Jeff Buckley on a cloud or a rainbow or something, and he’ll introduce me to Jim Morrison and James Dean and Janis Joplin, and they’ll let me in their group!!  How cool would that be?! Or I’ll be stuck in the group with John Denver and Karen Carpenter in it. I remember reading a Nancy Mitford quote once where she said, “I’ve always felt the great importance of getting into the right set at once on arrival in Heaven”.  And you know what?  The very fact that I’m quoting Nancy Mitford guarantees I’ll be in the group with Karen Carpenter.  As if I’m not paranoid enough about my weight without having to hang around her for eternity!

What about my phone?  Do I get one up there? Maybe you don’t need one.  Maybe you just think of a message and it sends. And is it on a predictive setting?  Is there good coffee in heaven or only that shit International Roast?  Is there food up there?  Is it a sit down and order at restaurants thing, do you cook your own or is it an all you can eat buffet type deal like Smorgy’s? I wonder if heaven’s got an equivalent to my local nightclub, Honky Tonks? I can just imagine the DJ saying…

Hey there all you cool cadavers, all you decomposing divas, and welcome to “Cloud 9” – the coolest nightclub this side of heaven’s gates.  If you were cool down there then this is definitely the place for you! Coming up later ol’ blue eyes is going to belt out a few tunes doing it “his way”, followed by Tupac and Biggie doing their own personal take on I got you babe or should that be “they got you babes”? bang bang! Whoopsie! Now here’s an oldie we’ve dug up from the files, and we’re gonna exhume a few more classic tracks before the eternal night is through!!

Actually, what hope would I have up there when I couldn’t even pick up in nightclubs down here?  Maybe if I’d worn this flannie on the table to Honky Tonks more often? 

Now why exactly would they choose to identify me with a flannie?  I mean, yes, I guess I did live in it for about six years but still, for fucks sake!  My first boyfriend Brendan bought it for me and I thought it was the coolest thing ever.  I’m easily pleased. 

I’ve had five boyfriends in my whole life.  The shortest was three months, the longest was 2 years, and I’ve never ever had a one night stand.  How sad is that?  Surely that’s the one compulsory experience necessary for having lived a full life.  There was this one guy who I only knew for one night in a closet at a party.  Does him rubbing himself up against me count? I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some really great sex in my life.  I even did it on a tram once. It was empty. Except for the conductor. Anyway, after that Brendan tried to talk me into doing it on all forms of public transport.  I was only sixteen.  Maybe Mum was right about him. There was that time I was blind drunk and snuck in late and Mum was waiting up for me. Clearly being dead hasn’t made it any less tragic to think of now…

Umm….Oh….Hi Mum!  Well, what I’m doing is that I…uh..heard a noise outside and uh….I got out of bed which I’d been in since 9.30 and then I got dressed to go see what it was and then I realised I locked myself out but luckily I had taken my bag with me when I went out so I had my keys on me to let myself back in and… No I haven’t!  I haven’t been with Brendan.  He’s not a loser mum!  He’s a bogan! And I must love him coz if he dropped me I’d spew!  I know he stole your garden gnomes but he was drunk at the time so he didn’t know what he was doing.  Why do you always have to pick on me?  I’m not a kid anymore, I’m 16 and I know a lot more about life than you think.  Not all teenage girls…boys are just out to have sex with boys mum.  Some of them actually want to have a meaningful conversation and a committed relationship! Yes, in their panel vans! I’m not a harlot! He wanted to give me a love bite but I said you might see, so I let him put his hand up my t-shirt, but over the bra so he won’t think I’m a slut.  Not all ben are mastards Mum! I hate you!  And I don’t care if I’m grounded coz I’m still gonna keep seeing him whether you like it or not……and I am going on the pill!!  It does not cause brain damage!

I don’t think Mum ever forgave me for going out with Brendan.  She just couldn’t believe that a daughter of hers was seeing someone whose idea of a romantic night was he and I watching the footy with no pants on.  Mum’s very particular about most things.  She’s down there now, sitting upright and perfectly groomed as always.  She looks so…composed.  You know, I don’t think my mother has ever cried a day in her life.  Even when Dad left us she locked herself in her room for twenty-four hours then came out and acted as if nothing had happened.  She just put all her energies into things like her job, playing bridge, and keeping the house spotless by being an anally retentive Nazi. Did you know that there are rules about the lint bags in the washing machine. Yep. If they’re not emptied after every wash then one is sure to be branded an outcast and stoned by the angry villagers. That’s Mum’s theory anyway.  She’s down there now picking dandruff off Natalie Brady’s shoulder pads.  She doesn’t even know Natalie…who is basically sitting on top of Scott Anderson!  I can’t believe she’s trying to score at my funeral!  Where’s the respect?

Tyler!  Stop melting Jesus’ toes with the prayer candles! Heard of a leash, Sis? Well, at least I won’t have to babysit him anymore. Aunty Mary is asleep on Uncle Tom’s lap, dribbling on his new black pants. His incontinence pads should soak that up. 

What’s happening now? It’s gone quiet. Come on, people, let’s keep this show moving.  Oh, it’s one of those slideshow things with photos from my life! Cool! Nice trip down memory lane for me. 

Oh Christ, look at that. Miss Altona Gate 1972 beauty competition, sash and all.  You know, I pulled that off with a shitty nappy too. Awww, year 7 school photo, notice how the fringe starts at the back of my head?  Ah yes, the fully braided head with beads look in a Bali nightclub competition. Mum, they’re condoms I’m blowing up, not balloons. Is this appropriate? Hang on, that one’s not even me! It’s my sister with a kiss mask on!  Oh God!  Deb photo with my cousin Jessica.  That dress looks like a taffeta factory exploded next to me, while Jessica looks stunning as usual in her sophisticated Audrey Hepburn number.  Um, that’s Jessica at my sixteenth birthday party…I’m in the background with the orange leggings. Oh, and there’s Jessica standing in front of me holding up her first prize trophy at little athletics. Did you put this slideshow together, Jessica?  That’s it!  I’m not watching anymore.

Jessica was forced upon me from birth.  Our relationship was all about envy and competition.  The envy was pretty much on my side.  Ballroom dancing, Brownies, little athletics, you name it, we did it. She did it better.  Of course my Aunty never failed to point this out.  Usually at a function in front of about fifty family members she’d bring out Jessica’s latest trophy while I stood there clutching my participation ribbon from the novelty events. Oh yeah, spoon race – I finished three years in a row.  They wouldn’t let us have eggs. Jessica’s the kind of person who walks into a party and doesn’t worry if people will like her, she worries whether or not she will like them.  Look at her down there.  Holding her tissue up to her nose as if she’s crying.  You know, there’s probably coke hidden in that tissue, and she’s been snorting it all the way through the service. Oh, off to purge the piece of celery you had for lunch today are you Jessica?  Where’s she going?  What?!  You’re letting that coke-snorting emaciated cow speak at my funeral? Nooo…

Dolly and me were like sooo close.  No-one was as close as we were.  No-one knew her like I did.  She was special.  I would say to her, sweetie – you are sooo special.  I remember when we were little girls we were doing our Juniors Callisthenics competition,  and Dolly was like crying outside coz while she was on stage doing her freearm routine a boy had yelled out “hey thunder thighs, you’re ugly!” and my mum gave her a hug and said don’t worry Dolly, just remember that even if you’re not beautiful on the outside, you’ll always be beautiful on the inside.  And like that’s how I got into modelling coz people saw what a lovely lithe body I had in callisthenics and they pushed me into it.  I really had no choice being born with such a….well….  But I would always tell Dolly, you are so lucky coz men like a fuller figure don’t they?  We were all concerned when she got a year’s membership to paintball because Dolly has always been like fully unco when it came to any sort of physical activity.  And if anyone should know that, it was me.  Through our childhood, Dolly and I did Jazz Ballet, netball, callisthenics, little athletics and interpretive dance classes together.  Poor Dolly never excelled at these activities like I did, and I could sense her feelings of inadequacy around me.  Like a little lost puppy sometimes.  Apparently on the day of her first game of paintball she was doing really well, scoring lots of points and leading her team to victory……..and if it hadn’t been for that off-course team of elderly formation skydivers who were filming a Christian television association commercial she’d still be with us today.  They just kept piling on top of her one after another.  She had no hope of getting out safely from underneath all those parachutes forming the shape of a crucifix.  Oh my god, when I think it was only like six months ago that Dolly came to visit me on my second Cosmo cover shoot, the latest issue is now available at all good newsagents, and we had a special, like, ten minutes of girly talk and laughs.  I can still see her, cheeseburger in hand, as I nibbled on my salad. And I tried to get her off the drugs Aunty Maria.  When I found her almost like unconscious at fourteen after smoking those eight bucket bongs and vomiting into the kitty litter I was the one who kept her addiction from the family. It’s our little secret Doll.  Dolly and I had another secret….that whoever died first the other would perform a tribute to them from our interpretive dance classes.  So, here goes…

What a dickhead !  Yeah, coz we all just love seeing a bit of interpretive dance.  By the way, those boobs? Fake.  Hair? Extensions. Lips?  That would be where her thighs went. That’s the most embarrassed I’ve seen her since the day I caught her pashing the P.E. teacher behind the bike shed. I got an A in P.E. for the rest of that year, and Jessica had to let me tag along to all the popular kids’ parties for months. But then we finished primary school and that was that.

That’s right!  Those  idiotic geriatric formation skydivers landed on top of me while I was playing paintball!  Unbelievable! Even the way I died is embarrassing.  It probably turned up in the Odd Spot section of some obscure international website.  Australian woman killed in freak skydiving accident. Cooking sherry found in glove box.

At least I had one nice boyfriend in my lifetime. Ralph and I went to primary school together. I always thought he was sweet. Dorky but sweet. He gave me a slinky as a present one year at Christmas and it was the best thing anyone had ever given me. One day, about fifteen years after we finished grade six we bumped into each other. After more than a few movie and dinner dates we woke up one morning and realised that we had become a “couple”.  We did all those soppy couple things together.  Stayed in bed all day Sunday watching the midday movie and making love over and over again, fed each other big chocolate sundaes in front of Sleepless in Seattle, played trivial pursuit in the nude, rolled around pashing on the grass in the park. You know, the kind of coupley stuff that I saw others doing when I was single and wanted to rip out their eyeballs with a pencil.  Those were brilliant days.  Being with Ralph was like hanging out with your best friend all the time.  He even waxed my legs for me, including the little bits of hair on my toes.  Now that’s love.  Yeah, with Ralph…

That slut!  Get your hand off Scott’s thigh Natalie! Groping is not the same as comforting!  Oh, get a room!  Oh…they are.  Although I don’t think the confessional technically counts as a room. Oh good, Tyler’s run off with the communion wine. Someone should really get that off him…not you, Aunty Mary!  Can no-one see this going on? Hang on, why am I still worried about this stuff?  I’m dead. Shouldn’t I be more enlightened about life by now?  Isn’t there this earth shattering epiphany or startling revelation about the meaning of life when you die? Shouldn’t the ending explain the beginning and the middle?  Maybe God’s going to ask me about the meaning of life when I get up there?  What if there’s a quiz on what I learnt in life?  I hate tests!

Uh…first Australian prime minister…uh…Captain Cook? …the second man to set foot on the moon?  Oh…um…Buzz….Buzz Lightyear? Uh, the meaning of life is…um…chocolate?…Good sex?…Building an impressive investment portfolio? What have I learnt?  Uh…I learnt that if I make a face and the wind changes my face doesn’t actually stay like that? No?  I learnt that drinking milk before a big night out doesn’t stop you vomiting, it just makes you throw up a lot of milky vodka?  Name of a really cool band?  Oh….I knew you’d ask me that! Can I phone a friend?

Mum’s getting up. She’s going up to the lecturn. She’s going to speak?! Oh, great.

Well, hasn’t this been a lovely ceremony. Thank you all for coming.  It was wonderful to hear my lovely niece speak of Dolores with such a fondness and respect. Thank you so much for your compassion Jessica.  Dolores didn’t usually make a habit of listening to anything I said, and when I told her that this paintball business was a ridiculous idea she went ahead and did it anyway.  What kinds of people want to go around shooting bits of paint at each other?  Those fumes are toxic, and the force of those pellets hitting you must be dangerous enough without…anyway, here we are.  If only she’d listened to me…Dolly had her faults, I more than anyone knew that only too well.  She cared too much what people thought of her, she was too nice to stand up for herself a lot of the time, and as a result she could get hurt easily.  She was too concerned with pleasing people all the time, and felt she wasn’t quite interesting or cool enough…whatever that’s supposed to mean. She thought she was a misfit, alone in the world, when the truth is that everyone feels that way at some point in their life. Since Dolores was a child I only wanted to protect her and keep her from getting hurt like I…but of course no-one can stop their children from being hurt.  That’s how they learn.  And I know she had her heart broken, on at least one occasion.  But I also know that she was lucky enough to find someone who loved her very much.  Ralph made her so very happy, and when he passed away a couple of years ago it broke Dolores’ heart.  He made her feel special, and for the first time in her life she didn’t care how others perceived her because she was happy. You know, I think that sometimes Dolly might have believed that I didn’t love her.  Maybe I didn’t say often enough, ever in fact, how much I loved that girl.  She was unique.  She was funny and kind and so full of love. She would look into people and search out the good in them, and there wasn’t a manipulative bone in her body. Sometimes I wish there had been a nasty streak or a thicker skin to cope with the things in her life that hurt her so much. But that was the essence of Dolly – everything went straight to her heart. One weekend she made me watch “Love Actually” with her three times, and at the part in the airport towards the end, she sobbed every time.  She went through life with an open mind and an open heart, and that’s the only way for anyone to absorb all the good this world has to offer. The downside of course is that she couldn’t filter out the bad; the pain. In order to embrace life the way Dolores did, she also had to have the courage to embrace the hurt that would invariably come to someone so wonderfully unguarded. I for one could not be prouder of the way Dolores lived her life.  She was my beautiful girl, and she will be with me every day for the rest of my life. I love you my girl.

I love you too, Mum.

I thought Mum hated Ralph because he worked in a supermarket deli, and wasn’t good enough for me. 

I didn’t leave the house for two weeks after Ralph died, except for the funeral. He always said that intersection was dangerous, and someone would end up getting killed. It ended up being him. I think I went a bit mad after that. I started drinking….a lot. I joined the TAFE mime class, I started an African drumming course – those bloody bongos are still sitting in my room – the body corporate banned me from playing them.  And then I joined the paintball club.  I’m not even brave enough to get a Brazilian wax but suddenly I was up for Skirmish. And we all know how that turned out. You know what? Maybe Mum was right…not only about the paintball thing being a stupid idea, I mean about me caring too much about what others thought all the time. So what if I wasn’t cool?  Being uncool isn’t the worst thing that can happen to a person. It works for Delta Goodrem. Maybe my fantasy eulogy needs a bit of a re-write.

Thankyou and welcome to the several dozen of you who have come today to Dolly’s funeral.  Dolores Reilly was born into a semi-dysfunctional family in the western suburbs.  She could sing all the words to Wham’s “Last Christmas” by the time she was fourteen, and even though she didn’t know who the first prime minister of Australia was, she did know the names of every single member of the partridge family and really hoped they’d ask that in heaven.  From an early age, Dolly had a desperate need to be liked, was obsessed with being popular and cared too much what others thought of her. She lived in America where she became a firm believer that everyone should have their heart broken and get a restraining order put on them at least once in their life. Dolly loved to dance, liked a drink or two and although her body wasn’t perfect, it could definitely be described as bootylicious.  She never remembered to floss her teeth, and was never brave enough to get a Brazilian coz she heard that once you do it you can never go back to the normal wax job. Dolly had a few unfulfilling relationships, never had a one night stand and was lucky enough to fall in love with a wonderful man named Ralph who told her she was the most beautiful creature in the universe. This sensitive, impressionable and fleshy inner thighed woman with the odd pimple and a bit of cellulite was apparently loved very much by her mother, sister and hyperactive nephew…and definitely did not die a nobody

Hey, here comes the cute guy…what’s he doing?  Oh, pallbearer.  Hey, easy!  Don’t drop it…me. 

Woah, bright light! Alright, I’m coming!  Again with the music! Hey, who’s that there waiting behind you, God? Uncle Colin?  Is that you?  Wow!  You’ve stacked it on!  Quite the buffet up there then I’m guessing. Hi Aunty Rose…Mrs Stephens…the old guy who lived in our street…why are you waiting for me?  I didn’t even know you…but hey, nice of you to make the effort. Jeff? Jeff Buckley? Nice to see you again. Well no, we’ve never met but I met you in a bar once in a fantasy sequence…forget it. You’ve been waiting?  For me? Really? Wow. I don’t know what to say.

Ralph?  Hi.  Oh my God I’ve missed you…sorry, Jeff?  Oh, he’s my boyfriend. I have to choose? Between you and Jeff? Oh, that’s a bit harsh, I just got here. Who’s in your group Jeff? Janis Joplin? David Bowie? Prince?  Kurt Cobain?……From Growing Pains! The cool group. You want me in the cool group?  Dolly Rielly? Are you sure you’ve got the right person? 

Who’s in your group, Ralph? Karen Carpenter. Right. Sorry Jeff but I have to say no. And I have to ask….why were you swimming in the Mississippi in that get-up?  Look at those heavy boots.  Really, what did you expect? Is that slinky for me Ralph?  Oh, sweet.  Huh? Oh, geriatric skydivers. I’ll tell you all about it…

Adapted from the one woman show, “Halo Dolly” first performed at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2005

(c) Fiona Harris 2016

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