January 18, 2005
I am on twigs. I’ve tried Malibu, nail-biting and sex with mutants to quit smoking but now I am on essence of twig. If you immerse twigs in hot water and then watch Gone With the Wind once or listen to Cole Porter’s I Hate Men 96 times, a twig brew is created. It calms the smoker’s angst. It steals the will to smoke.
I found them in a Marylebone shop where Prince Charles gets his back rubbed. “Please cure me of smoking,” I screamed at the banks of vitamin supplements and colonic irrigation guides. “Twigs,” smiled a man behind a counter. They grow in India and are packaged in Stanmore. They look like goat shit. I put them in a cupboard between the matzo flour and the breadcrumbs. I forgot about them.
Last week I visited the cupboard. A fly flew out of the breadcrumb jar. The twigs waited. They said best before end December 2004. Even my twigs have expired, I moaned. I added them to a glass of boiling water.
Two hundred and twenty-two minutes of Scarlett’s lies later – “I love you. I’ve always loved you. I’ve never loved anyone else” – I inspected the twig water. It was exactly the same as water combined with fag butt. It had a floater; a woodlouse was suspended, upside down. The packet said: “Being a natural product of the earth, it should be cleaned before use.” I took out the louse and gave it honourable burial in an orange skin.
I picked up the water. It smelt like an Uzbek ditch.
I opened my throat like an anaconda regarding a Fulham child and drank. It took three seconds to go down. It took two to come back. Bile is astringent, so I mopped the kitchen floor with the regurgitated twig water. I didn’t feel relaxed, but the floor gleamed.
The experience reminded me of my attempts to harvest opium from my mother’s garden poppies, aged nine. I made incisions in the flowers and rubbed the oozing sap on to Silk Cuts. The hallucinations were interesting. I saw ants. You get high on anything if you believe, even biscuits.
Twig therapy failed me. I burnt the protagonists in the garden. I decanted the woodlouse from its orange grave and hurled it on to the pyre. The woodlouse was a sacrifice for my sins, I thought, as I lit a Marlboro from its tiny, flaming corpse.
A collection of humor articles from Forces International