The Babe is a Crusader who I am pretty sure is a woman, and not a man pretending to be a woman online, but since she’s anonymous there are really no guarantees.
Anyway, she has a raw, wish-I’d-thought-of-that blog here (listentothebabe.com) that betrays endless practice and is packed with flashes of beauty. I’ve been following it for a little while, so I asked her to tell me some secrets. Some from her life, some about her craft. Let’s do this. She’s underlined.
First drink is here; cheers. Banter is king so let’s start with that.
Babe, you hold a passport from somewhere yet currently you reside in Thailand.
You are an expat mostly because: I can’t stand living in familiar territory. I intend to live in as many countries as possible before Death comes knocking with her skull ring. I think Neil Gaiman portrayed her with a silver ankh on a chain around her neck, but my Death is more literal.
The most transcendental, soul-searing sexual experience you ever had was after a really violent argument with a man I was deeply in love with and I realised how vulnerable that love made me feel. Woah, I think that was too revealing. I really need to stay anonymous.
Upon your death, you decide to come back and decide to haunt for the rest of his/her life. I wouldn’t haunt. I would probably linger around artists and watch them work.
The world would be better if everyone in it immediately stopped using the word “I”.
The last thing you Googled was: the spelling of succinctly
The last book you finished reading was: The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz. My third time. But it’s so bloody brilliant that I had to imbibe it again. I’m almost done with Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer.
OK. Now that we’re riding on something close to a buzz and are in a forthcoming and agreeable mood, let’s talk art.
Babe, you are most inspired when: I’ve finished reading a good book, or watched an art film. Or when I’m sitting at a coffee shop that’s nearly empty.
Something you’re currently writing, besides your blog, is: a novel about a young woman and a transvestite.
You started writing on and off since I was 7. I did stop for a very long time when I worked as an environmental activist and later as a consultant. Then recently I quit working full-time so I could write. Because it was always there in the back of my head. The lure of the words kept returning like a tumor.
You can never write another word for the rest of your life. Your substitute creative outlet is: training for an ultramarathon, which would kill me, so it’s suicidal if I stopped writing.
A lifelong, still-unfulfilled desire has been to publish a book.
Going to let you be a snob now, we all need to be sometimes—as a practiced writer the most irritating rookie writing habit to you is this: the use of adverbs.
A song that is so beautiful to you it almost hurts to hear it is: Fuck that’s hard. Maybe some songs of The Police: Roxanne, Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic, So Lonely, Can’t Stand Losing You (laughing now), I could go on and on. I love them. Sting is the first Englishman I fell in love with.
One sentence you have written that says it all is: I don’t think I’ve written those words yet.
The three words you want said at your funeral are: She’s fucking nuts.
Now a little logical reasoning and we’ll end it. Kill-Fuck-Marry: Bukowski, David Cameron, and Quasimodo.
Kill Cameron, Fuck Bukowski and Marry Quasimodo.
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