Friday, June 3

The Onion Business

(A tale from the wooden room)

Life became unbelievably lush when our onion business started to take off. My wife and I had so many new friends we were awash with glee. Also we had lots of ready cash, and didn’t tell the tax man.

Money makes people very attractive to other people. My wife ran away with a couple of chaps from out of town, and I ran away with a couple of young women who seemed strangely insatiable in the clothing departments of department stores. Our house was emptied by robbers, because we had both run away and not thought to arrange for a caretaker. I didn’t care. I was having so much sex I couldn’t care. I never had enough energy.

Then one day I was stopped in the street by a man who introduced himself as Geoff. He said I didn’t need to know his second name, and something in his voice made me not want to know his second name. I pretended it was Cassidy, for the hell of it.

He said he had a massage from my wife. I was amused. But I had misheard him, and he handed me a message from my wife. It was written on paper, with a pen, and the paper had been put in an envelope and the flap of the envelope had been stuck down. My wife had always been very thorough. Well, not always. Our sex life had not been great.

She wanted half the onion business. I had forgotten all about the onion business because I had been having lots of sex, some of it unusual. Some of it was, I think, almost innovative. Just thinking about it now, after all these years, makes me warm.

I went to see a lawyer, and he said not to worry. Then he asked me for a lot of money, and for one of my girlfriends. I said I would let him have my horse, and visiting rights to my children. This seemed to do the trick, and he negotiated a very pleasing arrangement with everyone concerned, which made everybody happy in a desultory kind of a way. My wife even telephoned to thank me for my munificence, and I said that was okay, although I wasn’t sure what munificence was.

Then I retired from the onion business. It had turned rubbish anyway. I preferred sex with women. I preferred it when they didn’t mention that I smelled of onions. It didn’t stop them doing things, but I preferred them not to mention the smell. But it was when one of them mentioned the taste, that was when I decided to retire from the onion business. I made my mind up in a flash.

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