It Takes All Sorts
9 June 2003
It's not often that a blade of grass gets asked out to a party, so naturally she said yes. Admittedly she's young, slim and a tad green and new to the place, so it's only polite. All spruced up she turned up, a tactful thirty five minutes late, full of bottle and armed with an open mind of wine.
Everyone there was so nice, and so different. Most people had come with Train of Thought, in his car. He was always the designated driver, and it was best really - he was awful when a bit pissed. It was bad enough when he was sober: Single minded and a bit aggressive, he would plough through ideas one after the other, leaping from cloud to cloud, and never really ending. Sometimes he'd have an end-point in mind but it tended to slow him down, make him take more corners. He was at his most cutting when given free reign. Nevertheless, he normally got you to the party and home in reasonable shape, so few people complained. Those that did, walked.
It was one of those real parties, a good one. Just the right mix. She'd slotted right in, and had spent enough time meeting each person there to get a good handle, to join in properly. The punch was strong and the music got louder, and the dancers were getting closer together. She found herself with the host of the party on the sofa, giggling like old friends, watching people pairing of around the place:
The couple slow dancing rather inappropriately to the ten-piece uptight staccato groove that had followed the atrocious ballad that had simultaneously begun their lung-sucking and mostly cleared the rest of the room. They rather nicely matched in appearance, but Blade's first impressions of them both could be different. Belief was a rather stunning brunette, and forceful in nature. The self-assuredness oozed from her, and you wouldn't want to get into an argument with her.
He was equally stunning, and his chiselled kind of mountaineer complimented her well in a posed for Heat magazine way. Fact had introduced himself to me while I was fumbling with punch and a full plate of nibbles. One of those rock solid types, that doesn't give a damn what you think, so is honest from the start. Him and Belief had been having a heated argument for most of the evening, when they weren't having a quiet aside with me to cool off. And from the looks of it, the drink and the passion had got to the better of both of them, at least until someone puts Chumbawumba back on again.
And two are sheepishly leaving. Now there's a really interesting couple. The kind that will invite you to their wedding and then spend the rest of their lives complaining but always finding a reason to stick at it. Guilt was a boy that had some past, Blade was sure. Something way back, an event or habit, made him what he is. You kind of wish that he'd lighten up so that he'd at least enjoy the ride he's about to get. But we all know that he'll marry her, because it seems like the easy way out for him.
She sees at least part of all this. Hope is a lovely girl, unusually short, but a lovely girl. She didn't really make much sense to me, but it's obvious what she sees in him. She sees something that she can take care of, and try to nurture. The main thing in the back of her mind is wanting to make sure that he'll call her in the morning. That's why she's got that underwear on, and why he's in for a quite a treat.
The door opens and lights pours into the room and two more walk back in. He casually checks his fly, grins and crashes down on the sofa with us. Blade grins too, because it's hard not to like Contentment. Lie has gone to the table and poured herself a large Malibu and Cherryade, and Blade cottons-on a lot slower than everyone else.
She's a girl who is by definition false and sometimes even evil. It's her too-perfect looks and seemingly gormless expression. She can't handle Contentment (he likes to be called C), because he seems to be untouchable. So, tonight she tried to have one over by sucking him off in the hosts' en-suite. She's realised, above the sickly red of the concoction she's just poured herself that she's not only failed, but reinforced the very thing that he is. You can't get much more contented than that. If she wanted guilt, then she picked the wrong guy. But in this company, you would have thought that was all a bit obvious.
The party had that winding down feel about it, and Train turned up to whiz people home. Everyone was too pissed or tired or too snogging to hold his conversation, so he remained distractedly quiet. Blade wished Field, who had been her shoulder for the evening, and they had a big hug. The co-host, Gust, had been the life and soul of the non-couplers, always making his presence felt.
As she was sitting in the back the people carrier, Blade suddenly had a thought. "Why am I the only non-conceptual being at this party?". Train had a moment of clarity and answered me "Well, every story needs a bit of substance, doesn't it?"