Ah man. Shitty draws in the courtyard. The tarmac’s dashed with shitty wet-wipes. A pigeon pecks at one. Fuck man. A few feet away, gold spray paint describes the outline of a pair of shoes. The drizzle causes a rivulet of gold to run away into the drain. Shitty rain.
Last night a balding man of indeterminate age squatted in the corner of the courtyard, kecks around his ankles, and took a shit. He had a scar that ran from the corner of his mouth to his ear-lobe. Half a Chelsea smile. Half as funny. You could barely register a strain as he heaved the pale, quarter-pounder poo onto the floor, adjacent to the McDonalds box strewn nearby. The street cleaner on his break didn’t see - slumped over his cart, he was far too engrossed in a giant Stephen King novel to notice the shitty ghost wiping his arse.
Shitty rain continues into the afternoon. The man limps back through the alley into the courtyard. He and his suit are painted gold. Tracks of sweat streak his face revealing the pallid flesh beneath. He carries a gold-painted suitcase and a small wooden plinth.
Earlier that day he stood on the Southbank. Hold still you cunt. Oi shit cunt. Statue-man. A shitty camera went click pap. Fuck he thought: cotch off a Jubilee Gardens break. In the shadow of the London Eye Golden Wonder drew on a Benson, sucking it up. Later a kid smacked him in the goolies. Then silver-robot-man clocked him. Maltese beef. Oi l’oxx. I’m talking to you. F’oxx ommok. Son of a shit cunt whore. Knuckledusters and a screwdriver glinted in the sun. Ilaqli l-bajd. OK OK. Better bounce. Shitty luck.
The rain starts to abate. The man sits on his plinth and carefully removes a blackened crack pipe from his coat pocket. His fingers are blistered and scorched. No prints for the feds to ink. He packs the gob-stopper bowl with dirty grey rocks. The glass is tacky. Torch it bruv. The crystal chunks melt away and he sucks the vapour as it escapes from the cylinder. His pupils stretch. Far-flung-ghost-face. Out of reach.
A few hits later, however, and he doesn’t feel so nice. The familiar irritability and paranoia set in. He stands and paces - cracky spider walk - before resting his forehead against the brick wall. A nasty case of the Ekbom’s ensues. Fuck man. The crack bugs creep. Weaver ants elbow their way through his dermis, the hard carapace of their bodies grazing the lymph vessels. He starts to scratch furiously.
In the coming weeks the bulldozers will arrive in Smiths Court, clearing the way for a shitty new retail area, where Mambo and Fred Perry will compete for our cash, and this man will be forced to smoke elsewhere as another vestige of old Soho dies.
Come and visit us before we have to move.