Suggested Audio Jukebox ❆
 Foreigner “Cold As Ice”
 Fats Waller “Your Feet’s Too Big”
 Beck “Loser”
 The Animals “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place”
 Debbie Gibson “Shake Your Love”
Does anyone know a good head doctor? More to the point, does anyone know a good head doctor who does call outs to the Himalayas? You see, I’ve been in the Nepalese mountains for seven weeks now, endured sub-zero conditions and a pretty severe case of frostbite, been set upon by famished wolves, caught in an avalanche, surrendered any remaining feeling in my testicles, and the closest I have come to spotting Bigfoot came as a result of lacing my hiking boots too tight. I’m beginning to wonder whether it’s just a myth after all. I mean, nobody has ever come up with any concrete evidence that the yeti even exists and it has all ultimately been speculation. So it appears as though my two month expedition has been for squat and I’m fast regretting not taking the opportunity to kick back in Honolulu or some other sun-drenched nirvana. If I’m out here much longer, I’ll no doubt be mistaken for “the wild man of the snows” and that is why I have decided to call time on this little misadventure and return home to hang my head in shame. What I’d give right now for a nice cup of Darjeeling tea.
It’s not like there are a great deal of ways of passing the time out here either. Granted, I have managed to amuse myself by writing my name in snow with piss, but ad hoc calligraphy aside, my time has largely consisted of huddling up in my one-man tent praying for a freak heat wave to hit. The air quality 20,000 ft above sea level is sketchy at best and I spend most of my man hours light-headed. There’s no cell signal or internet cafés with fibre optic broadband; just a dense blanket of snow and general feeling of abandonment. And I would literally kill a man with my bare hands just for a solitary hot meal. Only one thing could raise my flagging spirits currently, and that my friends, is a brief glimpse of the infamous Sasquatch in all his shaggy glory. I’m not expecting miracles here, just a long enough visit for me to snap a quick Polaroid and I’ll be on my merry way without another thing said. It’s one thing being the eternal optimist but eventually there comes a time when you just have to suck up the cold, hard facts. Here’s one for you – I’m a fucking clown shoe and not even a pair. What the hell was I thinking?
At any rate, I could sit here bleating on about my woes until the sun rises, but the nights here are something else, and I’d be better served spending eight more sleepless hours on lockdown away from the spiteful gusts of Mother Nature at her most polar. The camera equipment is all set up, and if anything so much as farts in my vicinity, I’ll damn well know about it. Chance would be a fine thing; you know things are bad when you find yourself craving the scent of another man’s colon. What I’d give for a tin of baked beans and campfire recital of Blazing Saddles. Fuck it, I may be gluttonous when it comes to punishment, but even an intrepid adventurer like myself has his limits. First thing in the morning, I’m packing up and shipping out. Mr. Bigfoot sir, if you can hear me right now, the ball’s in your court son. This is your last chance to make yourself known, and after that, you’re on your own. Don’t even try spinning me a yarn about being self-sufficient either as I don’t buy into it for a second. We all need a hug from time to time and there are a pair of open arms going begging here so get your act together will you and give me a goddamn sign.
I don’t want to get you all excited over nothing, but unless my last marble has finally decided to vacate the jar, I can discern definite movement outside. The time is 2.47 am and I know that as I’ve been counting down every last one of the bastards since I retired for the evening. Naturally I’m keeping my expectations low, as chances are, it’s a passing snow leopard come to take a steaming dump on my front porch. You’d think that would be a pleasant surprise come dawn’s early light wouldn’t you? Well think again as the snow leopard is renowned the world over for the vile stench of its stools and that’s no way to be greeted as I clamber out to smell the morning dew. The worst thing I could do would be to startle whatever beast is roaming outside, given that I’m fairly assured I figure lower on the food chain than most of them up here. Thus I shall play the patient game and listen out for any further movement. It’s not like I have anything better to do is it? Please bear in mind that I can no longer feel my genitals, and the last time I jerked off, it presented itself via stalagmite. I’d cross my fingers but even they’re frozen together in a cluster. You see, I have absolutely nothing left to lose by sitting tight.
There it is again. I’m telling you, something is out there skulking about and it sure as shit ain’t no red panda. Of course, it could be my mind playing tricks on me, as it has consistently since my Rubix snake busted back at base camp. But it could also be the discovery of something no man alive or dead has ever been able to confirm. I’ve watched Harry and The Hendersons numerous times and have a fairly good idea how to approach a Sasquatch should one stumble onto my turf. They seemed to do a decent enough job of domesticating the beast and I’ve raised more than enough in charity donations to purchase a second-hand station wagon for those all-important trips into town. I can see it now – “nice Bigfoot you have there buddy” to which I’d reply “get your own Bigfoot loser” and continue to pimp my yeti to Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. Think of the money I could rake in through advertising alone. Don’t wish to come across as a money-grabbing tyrant but nobody could say I don’t deserve a little upturn in fortunes. I guess I’ll never know if I don’t stick my neck out and introduce myself right? And should I step outside directly into a freshly laid pile of snow leopard shit; there’ll be hell to pay dagnabbit.
Oh…my…giddy…aunt. Tell me my eyes deceive me and I’ll argue the toss that they don’t. Unless Zach Galifianakis put on a ton of weight and grew about twelve inches overnight, that there is the abominable snowman himself and I would click my heels if I could feel the blighters. Let us begin by speaking of the elephant in the room; this dude is hung man. Only once in my life have I ever witnessed a schlong so all-encompassing and I cancelled my cable subscription the very next morning due to an overwhelming feeling of inadequacy. That thing must be twenty inches long and it’s on the flop to boot. Heaven knows the damage one of its erections could cause. Indeed, I suspect I may have found the culprit for that unannounced land slide last Thursday. I know one thing, if there’s a Mrs. Bigfoot then it’s no great surprise she’s never showed up on no radar. Poor lass is likely nursing her injuries after the most devastating make-up sex this side of Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger. He may have a fairly hefty chest rug on him and be something of “a Baldwin”, but I highly doubt Alec’s packing anything like this kind of luncheon meat. I shit you not, between the incapacitating brain freeze and state of hypnosis I find myself in currently, I’m one “Dannyyy!” away from waking up like Jack Torrance come the crack of dawn. Must…seize…the moment.
I guess the gargantuan girth would explain why they call it bigfoot as Mother Nature does like to make things proportionate. It would also account for the bulging biceps as this creature looks like it could compress me into spam with a simple head pat. Needless to say, I’ll be approaching with tremendous caution as I have no idea whether or not this mountain man will be volatile. But I cannot allow a moment like this to pass as they come around but once in a lifetime. Should I successfully tame this beast, then it will be my name up in lights alongside the headlining act and a guest spot on Oprah’s couch awaits. However, I’m effectively looking to befriend a Neanderthal here and the fact that there have only ever been a handful of recorded sightings suggests it’s rather partial to privacy. How is it that the old saying goes? “One in the bum, no harm done.” No that’s not it. “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” Wayne Gretzky was no stranger to the ice so I think I’ll take a leaf out of his book and grow a pair.
“Excuse me sir”
Where’s your caveman phrase book when you need one?
That one’s straight out of Crash Bandicoot. God I wish I was a marsupial right now.
“Richard you say?”
“Oh! Erm, yes. And who might you be?”
“Tell you what old bean, I’ll give you three guesses”
Old bean? What gives? Have I just wandered into The Twilight Zone here? Could this lunkhead’s grasp of the English language really put mine to shame? I mean, what the hell next? Is this yeti about to produce a pair of reading glasses from his furry pouch and recite A Midsummer Night’s Dream to me in syllable-perfect thespian tongue? Perhaps the wild berries I snacked on last night possessed hallucinogenic properties.
“A figment of my imagination?”
“No I can assure you I’m quite real”
“Hulk Hogan’s illegitimate brother, Hench?”
“Close but no cigar”
“I don’t know…Bigfoot?”
“Is that what they’re calling me nowadays?”
“If the slipper fits right? Or not as the case may be”
“Actually I would have said that my feet are well in proportion”
“It’s funny. I was just thinking the exact same thing”
I’m trying to retain eye contact, really I am, but that’s no easy feat with that pendulum swinging down south. Must attempt to ignore it as the last thing I need right now is to send the wrong signals. Let’s not goad the grizzly here, I’m sure he’d make a rather delightful snuggle buddy what with the sub-zero conditions and all. But I still have to descend this glacial peak at some point and that’s some trek with your blast doors soundly compromised.
“Just because we share a little common ground, doesn’t mean we were separated at birth you know”
“I can assure you, the thought never crossed my mind Mr. Bigfoot sir”
“Call me that again and you’ll wish you hadn’t”
“Give me strength. No you raging numpty. Bigfoot. I find it deeply insulting”
“Won’t happen again, I assure you”
“It better not. That’s all I’m saying”
“So what do you like to be called then?”
“Nothing. I despise labels…and people come to think of it”
“Jury’s out but my dick just started itching if that’s any indication”
Crikey. One scratch and we’re both done for. Better change the subject quick.
“I’ve always wanted to visit the salt mines you know. Don’t suppose you know of any nearby do you?”
“You’re inviting yourself round for dinner, is that it?”
“Well seeing as you mentioned it, I am a little peckish”
“Fine. But you even think of saying one more thing to rile me and they’ll need a flask to transport you home”
“No pressure then”
“Okay then, as you’re my guest, you get three strikes and then you’re out. Sound fair?”
“Really? Two it is then”
Bugger! This dude is no slouch. From hereon in, I must endeavor not to put my foot in it or else this could be double jeopardy…trebled. Perhaps if I had some idea of his hobbies and pastimes, I could steer us back to that common ground he was speaking about a moment ago. I mean, what does a Bigfoot do to amuse itself during those lonely moments anyhoots? I’ve already established that there’s no wi-fi up here in the Nepalese mountains, so it’s not like we can discuss what’s trending on Twitter or stream Season 3 of Saved By The Bell to assist in our bonding. I’ve got bloody good mind to sue Rubix for selling me a defective snake you know.
“Lead the way big guy”
“I’m sensitive about my size”
Not as much as his girlfriend I’d wager. The question now is – how am I possibly going to make it through our dinner date without rubbing his fur up the wrong way? All this “he time” has left he who I must not mention decidedly crotchety and I’m hardly the kind of silver-tongued devil you’d want on hostage negotiations am I? I shit you not, I piss myself off daily. Last week, when my rations ran out, I said something flippant to myself that damn near hurt my feelings. It would’ve ended in fisticuffs too if I hadn’t stepped in and broke that shit up. And do you think I got any thanks? Are you getting my gist here? I’m pond algae, the very merest of plankton, and that’s likely why so many people sponsored my expedition in the first place. After all, who cares if I perish up here? Would the world really miss me if I simply ceased to breathe? Of course, that’s it. I’ll aim for self-pity and see where that gets me. Here goes nothing.
“I’m such a loser”
“Indeed you are. Now keep up or I’ll thump you in the kidney”
Tough audience. I’d shed a tear only my ducts have frozen up and something tells me I’d be pissing in the wind with this one. Look at him standing there all superior; just because he happens to be extraordinarily well endowed and be both stronger and more intelligent than me. Well I’ve got news for you Bigfoot – chicks don’t dig hairy backs. Besides, you don’t have a friend in the world right now so who’s the chump now huh? Notice I’m saying all this in inner monologue as I’m flat-out petrified about having my swede mashed. I may be a dummy but I’m not that much of a dummy. Okay so I am that much of a dummy plus change but don’t let on to old grumpy bollocks over there or you’ll blow my cover.
“Moving swiftly on, just how far are these salt mines you’ve told me precious little about?”
“We’re almost there and don’t be facetious”
“Wouldn’t dream of it”
“Or sarcastic either”
“Or snivelling. I despise that the most”
“Fine. I won’t say another word then”
“Hissy fits will get you nowhere son”
This bastard’s passive-aggressive you know, although veering suspiciously towards the latter. If you ask me, his behavior is downright discourteous. I could be in 1001 other places right now doing any one of seven different things but instead I’m stuck here treading on eggshells while being severely dressed down by a creature that isn’t even supposed to exist. You don’t see pterodactyls flapping about like they own the place do you? No they went out of vogue well before corduroy.
“Here we are. It’s not much but it’s home”
Home? I’ve visited some dives in my time but few quite as unhomely as this particular dugout. On the upside (and of the scantest consolation), I now know precisely what the unnameable gets up to on his downtime and it entails skinning alive any wayward stragglers and feasting on their marrow. There has to be a hundred sets of decomposed remains down here, and by my estimations, that makes me supper.
“Do excuse the mess. I keep meaning to hire a maid”
Yeah, good luck with that.
“You should see my gaff. I was actually about to say that it looks wonderfully cosy”
For an abattoir maybe.
“Sure. Throw up some drapes and a white-picket fence and I could almost have walked into The Little House on The Prairie”
“You’ve lost me”
“I’m saying nice digs sir. A real…fixer upper”
“You’re just trying to charm me”
No shit Sasquatch. It’s either that or piss you off and it’s now been made abundantly clear to me how that customarily plays out. It took me forty bleeding years to become comfortable in my skin and the last thing I need is some grungy grizzler stripping it away from my bones thank you very much.
“I wouldn’t say it if I didn’t mean it”
“Oh. Okay. Thanks I guess”
“No dramas. Say, do you have a restroom at all?”
“Sure thing. It’s second on the right, just past the pit of eternal damnation”
“Gotcha. Back in a jiffy”
Will I fuck! I shaved my balls once back in high-school and that was one too close for comfort, let me tell you. Thus I think I shall politely decline my host’s generous offer to become his brand new tooth pick and wriggle out of the restroom window before his tummy can commence its rumbling. I’m quite aware that opportunities such as this don’t come around often, but after weighing up the pros and cons and breaking the scales, I reckon I’ll just sneak off inconspicuously and save myself the salad dressing. He may be a one-off, a freak of nature, and walking cash cow but he’s also one crossed word away from pounding me into pâté and that shit gets less funny every time I repeat it over and over in my head. Where’s Crazy Ralph when you need him?
Yeah, fuck off Ralph! I’m not kidding you, if he paid as much attention to watching his own back as he does messing around with his bicycle clips, then perhaps he wouldn’t get garroted for doing precisely what he warns us not to. I make the old buzzard right on one thing however – It’s got a death curse! Which is why I’m saying sayonara Sasquatch and thanks for a year’s supply of waking nightmares. Or at least, that’s what I would be saying if this particular restroom had any poxy windows. Guess it’s time to face the music and just pray that I can think of another way out of this mess that doesn’t entail being eaten alive.
“Well you certainly took your time”
“Yeah, sorry about that. Bit of an upset tummy”
“Whatever. The most important thing is that you’re here now and dinner is about to be served”
“Yeah. About dinner. Don’t suppose I could take a rain check could I?”
“On whether or not you want to insult me when I’ve gone to all the trouble and you’re on your last strike”
“Wouldn’t dream of it”
“Good. Then take a seat and I’ll go and serve it up”
Can’t wait until his back is turned so I can make a run for it more like. I think I remember my way out of this hell hole and I have no intention of dragging my heels the very moment his back is turned. Indeed, I reckon my days as an intrepid explorer are well in my slipstream. Some gigs just aren’t worth the danger money. At any rate, this is my chance to scarper while the going is good and something tells me that I won’t be getting a better one. If you can hear me mother, smoke me a kipper and I’ll be back for breakfast.
“And where do you think you’re going?”
Rats! I’ve been rumbled. There’s only one thing to do now. RUN FOR MY LIFE!
“Get back here or so help me, I’ll grind your bones”
I have no doubt that he would. But I’m not going out like that. There are too many things I still haven’t done. For example, I’ve never been to the Waka Waka Islands, never flown a kite in a tornado, never mastered the harpsichord, never befriended a shrew, never sipped elderflower from a clog, never watched Freddy Got Fingered wearing a cheese helmet, never played backgammon with the Dalai Lama, never learned to cross stitch, never rode a rickshaw, never worn lycra leggings out in public, never farted at a wake, never woken up in a shipping crate bound for Ecuador after a hard night’s drinking, never got married in Vegas to a transgender hooker, never bettered my high score on Tetris, never gone senile, never…
Pesky damn monologue.
“What are you gonna do with me?”
“It’s off to the pit of eternal damnation for you”
On the plus side, I’ve never been to a pit of eternal damnation. Not sure I wish to break that particular duck if I’m honest.
“Unhand me you wretch”
“I invited you into my home, slaved over a hot oven for you, resisted the overwhelming urge to batter you like hake and this is how you repay me. I’m done with being the congenial host. It’s time for you to die heathen”
“Firstly, the salt mines are far less than homely. Secondly, I swear I heard the microwave go ding a minute ago. And last but by no means least, you’ve clearly got anger management issues and if you release me from this full body lock, I can make some calls if you like”
“It’s too late for that now. You’ve mistaken my goodwill for weakness one too many times”
Well that’s cast rather a gloomy shadow over the evening. Speaking of which, can anybody else hear a thousand agonizing screams all in unison? Perhaps it’s just the air conditioning playing up.
That’s a negative and I can tell you another thing I’ve never done. I’ve never witnessed a sight so comprehensively ghastly. By the looks of things, it’s not so much that nobody has ever sighted Bigfoot as no bugger has ever lived to tell the tale. Some secrets are just better off kept. Curse my inquisitive nature. By the way, is that a cauldron simmering in the corner?
“But I’m fully clothed”
“Then strip off. And don’t forget to make it sexy”
“I can’t while you’re looking. I’m shy”
“You’ve got nothing I haven’t seen before sonny boy”
That’s the kind of thing my mother would say and I stopped letting her flannel wash me at twenty-five. This isn’t dignified and neither does the punishment fit the crime. After all, I came to the Himalayas with the very best of intentions and have had a torrid time battling the sub-zero conditions and fending off packs of inhospitable wolves. Surely I’ve paid my dues by now. That said, I’ve always been a shameless exhibitionist and I am wearing my very best jockeys. It’s just a shame I’ve had them on for two months now. Fuck it, if it’s sexy he wants, then it is sexy he’ll get.
“Don’t suppose you have any music on hand do you? Something to set the tone?”
“As a matter of fact, I think I do yes. Bear with me, there’s a Sony Discman with portable speakers under all these piles of bones, I’m certain of it”
“I’ve got a better idea. How about you let me go and I promise to never darken your doorway again?”
“Hmm. Let me ponder that one for a moment…NAH! Aha look, I’ve found it. Do you like Debbie Gibson by the way?”
Debbie Gibson? Debbie Fucking Gibson. Please, don’t let it be Shake Your Love. Anything but Shake Your Love. Before any fully fledged Gibsonites among us start waving your fists in anger, Shake Your Love was the song I lost my virginity to and the less said about that little exchange the better. Okay, you’ve dragged it out of me. The year was 1987 and the place was a Bangkok bordello. Without painting too much of a mental picture as time is evidently of the essence here, let’s just say that it’s the whole reason I never got to ride a rickshaw. Perhaps I should have known better than to pay 2000 Thai Baht for twenty minutes with a call girl named Mai Tuck Dong.
“Would you mind terribly pressing play? It would appear that my fingers are too chubby”
Guess there’s only way to find out.
For as much as my bones are chilled right now, at least it’s not the 12″ Club Mix.
“Remember, slow and sexy”
“But the song is barely three minutes long”
“That’s fine. Next up is the 12″ Club Mix”
“Where’s your sense of culture?”
“Culture? You really don’t get out much do you? Listen, there’s more to life than Debbie Gibson. I know it may not seem like it but civilization really ain’t all that bad when you get used to it. Come with me and I’ll set you up in your own apartment. You could listen to as much Debbie Gibson as you like there”
“And leave my salt mines? I’ll do no such thing”
“Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith. Look, I know we got off on the wrong foot but I have a tendency to grow on people when given the chance. Besides, think of all the adventures we could have together”
Well I have always fancied seeing the Blue Man Group”
“Then consider it done. I’ll book us a flight to Vegas first thing when we get home. All you have to do is not eat me”
“And how do I know you’re not spinning me the yarn?”
“It’s called trust. You really should try it sometime”
“I trusted you already and look where that got me”
“Best out of three? Tell you what, I’ll toss in a hand job for good measure”
May have to be a two-hander this one.
“Well it has been a while since the sailors last walked the plank so to speak”
“There you go. One question. Would you mind terribly if I wore a mitten? Frostbitten fingers and all that”
“Actually I have a better idea. Wait here while I retrieve the lip gloss”
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. The following scenes are too harrowing to show before the watershed so I shall leave the rest to those wonderful imaginations of yours. In case you were at all curious, I did manage to escape the salt mines with my life and sanity just about in tact but have been drinking soup through a straw ever since. The moral of this story is not to let curiosity get the better of you as certain stones are left unturned for damn good reason. The legend of Bigfoot is very much real and I can now state with considerable assurance that he’s every last bit as abominable as they say. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an appointment to get my memory erased.