Liar, fantasist and raconteur, Ditchdweller’s political career, following the Powellian model, ended in failure but earlier than most. Britain in the late seventies just wasn’t ready to bring back corporal punishment for liberals, cyclists and fat women. However, he still gets emails from Hammersmith Borough Council saying that the place hasn’t been the same since he left. True, the emails are mostly from Sigismund, the janitor, and specifically refer to the improvement in the state of the gents’ loos. After that, things went from bad to worse.
A stint working as a researcher in Westminster led to all MP’s concerned enjoying a custodial sentence. A speech-writing career in the City sadly curtailed before lunch on the day of Big Bang after Ditchdweller threw up down the back of one of the Stock Exchange servers. Back to Westminster as a lobbyist. An attempt to smuggle a clause re-introducing capital punishment into an Interim Provisions bill in the Upper House resulted in a second banishment from the Mother of all Parliaments.
To Wales, in disgrace and the classical music industry. Ditchdweller’s sketchy knowledge of basic electrical wiring nearly deprived the world of the art of Hubert von Karavan. Luckily, the maestro’s old habit of wearing Waffen SS-issue insulated tank-shoes saved him, though heaven knows where he acquired this live-saving knowledge.
Ditchdweller’s career as a baryton player with the original instrument ensemble, Les Arts Degoutants was cut short by the disappearance of the groups’ instruments (although they were subsequently retrieved from a pawn-shop in Rhayader) and a sudden urge to travel.
To China. Lost in the bars and fleshpots of the Pu Dong waterfront he might have been but not before acquiring a deep knowledge of Chinese regional food and acquainting himself with the politics – ahem – of the region. Gout, Her Majesty’s Inland Revenue and water-borne diseases all took their toll. Ditchdweller was eventually banned from flying by most airlines after unfair press coverage of his attempt to eat and drink the cost of a first class ticket from Singapore to London in a single flight. There are still bars in Minsk where the talk is of little else.
And so to his nadir. Poverty-stricken and alone, he ekes out a living as a freelance writer and eater of broken meats (Welsh non-rhyming slang for restaurant reviewer) as well as working as an humble costermonger on Britain’s notorious game fair circuit.
Of the many tens of customers he sees during the course of a two-day show, few know that they are dealing with a man who, at the height of powers, was capable of consuming a dozen 500gm tubs of Singapore Airline’s finest beluga and 8 magnums of Dom Perignon. Few would believe that this broken figure before them once had the cojones to yell ‘Speak Up!” during the 1982 Queen’s Speech. Even fewer would guess that here before them is the majority stockholder of Anurub; the hemorrhoid treatment with a difference. It contains sand.
Copyright Umberto Stanciewicz 2009