Magazine article The Spectator

Wishful Thinking

Magazine article The Spectator

Wishful Thinking

Article excerpt

High life

Wishful thinking


I know you English go for that bowing and scraping and forelock-tugging stuff, but we Greeks with a little bit of Kraut in us tell it like it is. As the great Sir Leslie Colin Patterson (cultural attache to the Court of St James's) once observed - while in the process of asking a Pom where he could get his rocket polished - `Most of the types one meets in the business arena are as shifty as shithouse rats.'

I was on my way to Havana for the Albemarle wedding, brand-new white linen suit expertly packed by Marga - my originally illegal four-foot Mexican maid, now as American as apple-pie and a lady of leisure at my expense - when I got the bad news from the superKraut, the Austrian princess also known as the mother of Taki's children, that my presence was required in the land of the banks and cuckoo clocks. And tout de suite, too.

What a disaster! Here I was ready to go to Havana with a blonde whose figure would make Liberace behave like Rubirosa, and the next thing I know I'm on an aeroplane with a bunch of wanker-- bankers heading east with my prospects of getting lucky diminishing by -each air mile. If this isn't coitus interruptus, I don't know what is. Incidentally, when Liberace went on to play the piano in the great hall up above, I wrote: `Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, and if you liked pussy, you'd still be with us.' Someone thought it rather rude, but I liked old Liberace's music. And, unlike the creeps of today, he had talent and could really stroke the old organ.

The only reason I was taking the bazooka-bosomed sheila down to old Havana - like importing a gram or two of happy dust to Bogota - was to stop myself from catching a dose of the clap. It seems a few of the senoritas down there suffer from the same ailment as those who conceive editors of the tabloids. Now it's all immaterial. Fidel can sleep easy, as can the bride and groom.

I was really looking forward to visiting a place that American culture has not as yet visited, but even the poor little Greek boy has to act responsibly at times. Mind you, Rufus Albemarle and his wife Sally could be dodging a bullet. Knowing myself and how I get when I'm given too much firewater, I might have said the wrong thing to the wrong person and ended up in the pokey. …

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