Wednesday, February 19, 2003

[Following is a transcription of a telephone call in which I, a fat, lazy American, had to speak with a business associate in England (a country in Europe). The transcription is as honest and accurate as memory serves.]

Englishman: (speaking with only a slight accent [which I found disappointing]): Hullo, [name of magazine redacted], [name of Englishman] speaking.

Me: Hi, [Englishman] this is [me] from [name of my office (an advertising agency) redacted].

E.: Ah, yes, I spoke with [name of my boss, redacted] this afternoon.

Me: Huh?

E.: [Boss], he mentioned you’d be calling—

Me: Oh. Right. This afternoon. It’s morning here.

E.: Ah, yes. Right.

Me: Tut tut. Pip pip.

E.: What?

Me: Nothing. Sorry.

E.: Right. So we’re waiting on the [name of my client, redacted] ad for our [name of magazine] October issue—

Me: Late, late, I know. I apologize on behalf of my whole continent.

E.: What?

Me: Uh … so … I just need clarification on some of the bloody material specifications—

E.: Right—I faxed those over, did you not receive them?

Me: I think I have them somewhere … oh bollocks. I must have lost them somewhere between the lift and the loo …

E.: I’m sorry—? Are you poking fun at me?

Me: What? No—

E.: Why are you talking like that?

Me: Tally-ho!

E.: I’m hanging up. I don’t find this funny.

Me: Bloody wanker!

E.: I think I should call [my boss].

Me: Jolly good! He’ll sort this out.

E.: I’m hanging up.

Me: Righto! Tea and crumpets! Fish and chips!

[I hum the theme song from “Benny Hill”]


Josh Abraham was born in Algeria in 1913. He spent his early years in North Africa, working various jobs—in the weather bureau, in an automobile-accessory firm, in a shipping company—to help pay for his courses at the University of Algiers. As a young journalist, his report on the unhappy state of Muslims in the Kabylie region aroused the Algerian government to action and brought him public notice. From 1935 to 1938 he ran the Théâtre de l’Equipe, a theatrical company that produced plays by Malraux, Gide, Synge, and Dostoevsky. During World War II he was one of the leading writers of the French Resistance and editor of Combat, then an important underground newspaper. Abraham’s fiction, his philosophical essays, and his plays have assured his preëminent position in modern French letters. In 1957 Abraham was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His sudden death on January 4, 1960, cut short the career of one of the most important literary figures of the Western world when he was at the very summit of his powers. No, wait. That was Albert Camus.

From the Producers of 24 Twenty-four hours in the life of an ordinary man ...
Advance Publicity for My Unwritten Masterpiece, in Case I'm Dead I may be dead by the time you read this, my faithful, loving audience. Be fortunate for my foresight, as I have thought to provide this glimpse into the very thing that may or may not have killed me by...

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.



RSD | RSS I | RSS II | Atøm | Spanish









From the Y.P.aRchives


Fun, Fickle Fiction (for Free!)
Fact, Opinion, Essay, & Review
Poetry & Lyric
Advice, How To, & Self-Help


Spectacular Features, Calendrical Happenings, Media Gadflies
Media Gadflies
Calendrical Happenings
The Book Club


Semi-Frequent Columns
Letter from the Editors
Disquieting Modern Trends


Interviews with Interviewers
One-Question Interviews


Correspondence (Letters To and Letters From) Letters from Y.P.R. Letters to Y.P.R. Birthday Cards to Celebrities


The Y.P.aRt Gallery Illustrious Illustration Photography Photomontage Graphic Design Logo Gallery


Pop Stars in Hotel Rooms Shreek of the Week of the Day What's Up with That? Fuit Salad Nick's Guff Vermont Girl The M_methicist Daily Garfield Digest Polish Facts: An Antidote to the Polish Joke


New & Noteworthy Et Cetera, Et Cetera, Et Cetera


Contributors' Notes


The Y.P.aRchives

This journal is powered by Movable Typo 4.01.

Y.P.R. & Co.