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clyne’s virus, darwin’s theory.

Clyne lives next door. Alone. Has done so for the past fifteen years and despite a regular succession of lady friends who come and stay and then go away, he has no plans to change his arrangements. He’s a bit rough around the edges is Clyne, not a big talker either.

Clyne is in the advertising business, done by remote, done from the little lean-to that rests against the western wall of his house. His media room. He buys spaces in commercial TV programs and onsells them to interested clients. Like fatbuster ads in cooking shows, that sort of thing. Back-end TV. Clyne built the lean-to himself when a summer storm knocked down five large trees across the road – enough wood there for two winters’ logfires, sixteen new fenceposts and five timber supports for the media room. Tin for the roof and tarps for the walls and the job’s done. Practical fellow, makes his own dog traps.

Handy man is Clyne, big fellow, rangy. Carries a fair load of hair on his skull and chin and always wears a little Clive Christian No. 1 everyday.

Which is a mystery to most of us seeing as how he never changes his socks. He hangs his washing out on the big Camphor Laurel you see, every couple of weeks, and nobody has spotted a sock yet. Could be a religious thing. Hair socks.

Clyne ran into a little complication the other day with his computer hardware, his tower drive in fact. A reasonably efficient IBM Thinkcentre he had bought second hand off one of his lady friends. Amazing the stuff she had stored in there, yards of it, Clyne swears he has deleted it all but we see his lights on very late at night. She was French, petite, tres amour. His clothesline never looked better. Lucky Clyne. Now everything is back to grey, or black to grey.

Back to the problem.

A snake fell off a ceiling rafter and onto his desk last monday. Clyne pulled back from his keyboard very smartly and the snake whipped into his drive.

Quick as that.

Who do you call?


(S is symantec, C is Clyne .. just in case you need help figuring out what comes next)

(S) ‘ कृपया (breath) thankyouforcallingsymantectodayweaareverypleased tobeofassistance (breath) howcanitbemypleasuretohelpyoutodaysir.’

(C) ‘ Want to run that past me again sport,’

(S) ‘Myextremeapologiessirandthankyouagainforcallingsymantecagainsir (breath)thankyouforcallingsymantec (breath) howcanitbemypleasuretohelpyoutodaysir कृपया.
– inwhatmannermightIbesofortunateenoughtoassistyoupleaseandthankyouagainforcalling. कृपया.’

(C) ‘ Got a snake in the box, could be a brown, any ideas?’

(S) Sir?

(C) Snake, brown, box – problem. ok?’

(S) Sir?

(C) “{click}”

Now Clyne is pursuing a philosophy that is a little anti-Darwinian – he’s not a big fan of the Theory of Evolution and figures that young Charles was a little selective in building the bones of the body of his theory. A little too relaxed.

He remembers visiting the zoo with his father, just as a child, and the image of a common male chimpanzee picking the shit out of his cousin’s anus and quaffing it as we do a choice oyster has never left him. Let the coprophagialists rise, let Charles share their plates. There is an adamancy here.

Clyne’s father was an abalone diver, his mother the daughter of a dairy farmer – he has a brother selling real estate and a sister who harbours an unearthly dislike of him that denies good sense. His anyway.

Nevertheless the problem persists, the hardware problem. Therefore a drink. And a  walk into the evening air here where nothing blinks out the light of the million stars in the evening sky, where the howl of a wild dog fifty yards away echoes for twenty miles into the hills and is answered from the few deep and overgrown gullys in there that have defied the Macademia nut farmers’ massive plantations.

Wild nation.


(Mc) ‘ Good afternoon, thank you for calling the McAfee 24 Immediate Support Centre. What is your fifteen character password and six digit temporary ID issued to you last November 16th between 9 am and 9.15 am. Please also provide the text reference (18 characters) that appeared in the draft contract for services sent to you by email at 7.45 am on November the 18th last.

My name is Ed, my ID is 1662WER_@#m my contact reference for this call is )(yuTTg$%# – please be sure to recite this when you are talking to an operator. Thank you for calling McAfee, Security is Proven Here. You are number 368 in a queue and should be through to our support staff in twenty six minutes. ‘

(C) “{click}”

Another drink. He eases a hardwood log onto the fire and wonders at the complicity of burning. How fire devours and comforts at the same time. Clyne also wonders at the eccentricity of man. Especially the toothless Frenchman who wanders through the properties at night singing Puccini and stealing mandarins, then again Nimbin must put its hand up for some of the collateral human damage around here. Clyne would prefer it if he took the grape-fruit though, they are a little sour this year.

Back to Darwin.

Back to the glittering stars and the endless carpetry of this diamonded night. Another drink, another walk into the dark night. So quiet.

How is it he asks his camphor laurel, the one without the socks, how is it that if mankind has aspired to the physical heavens for all of his days he has grown no wings to take him up there……. Charles?


‘ yeah.’

(C) ‘ you the snake catcher? ‘

‘ yeah. ‘

(C) ‘ I’ve got one needs catching. ‘

‘ yeah,

– where? ‘

(C) ‘ In me computer. ‘

” {click} “

14 Comments Post a comment
  1. One of my favourite posts so far. Made me laugh, too. At least the snake didn’t drop down the back of his neck…

    I liked the bit about the washing line never looking better, and the ‘endless carpetry’.

    July 13, 2011
    • the whole mess was based on an actual event with a neighbour – the snake and the computer – I sent him a copy – heh heh

      July 13, 2011
  2. Clyne #

    I am Clyne the subject of Pete’s story: Clyne’s virus, Darwin’s theory. I am indeed the neighbour of Peter and Angie and delighted to be so, this part of the story is true. It would be fair to say, as they do in Hollywood, that whilst essentially the story is true it might be best described as BASED ON A TRUE STORY.
    Indeed I was recently sitting at the desk of my home office when a snake fell from the roof less than one foot from me and crawled into the back of my computer. Concerned that if I left the office to obtain ‘snake eradication’ equipment, read bloody big shovel, the snake may leave the warmth of the computer and perhaps try my bed for winter hibernation.
    So I called Pete with a request that he come and observe as the necessary equipment was obtained. I am grateful that Pete bought with him his assistant Tony as with a true writers motivation I quickly gained the impression that Pete saw my predicament as more a potential story than an immediate danger. This was confirmed by Pete sitting at my desk and making notes.
    Thank you Tony.
    As a brash, ego driven youth I once told my father ‘They will write a story about me one day Dad’
    I was right; although perhaps not the story I anticipated all those decades ago it has indeed come to pass in Pete’s delightful piece.
    Finally one small correction, I have TWO pairs of socks but keep the better pair for weddings and funerals.

    July 13, 2011
  3. Wait. So Pete’s embellishing stories now? Curses! That I’ve been coming here for the hardcore journalism all along plays me as the fool. Again.

    Well played, good man. Well played.

    July 14, 2011
  4. Rusty Steele #

    Hahahaha… Pete, this is a good one. Thank you for it!

    July 15, 2011
  5. Karen #

    Ask someone over to help you with a snake situation and they sit down and take notes. Love it.
    Clyne’s “true” story almost as good as the “embellished” one.

    July 18, 2011
  6. Karen #

    And may I add. I like how on this site, commenters (or whatever the word is) without a profile pic get a nicely designed tile in place of the generic silhouette found elsewhere.

    July 18, 2011
    • did it special for you k, took hours, and there is symbolism in there –

      July 18, 2011
  7. Karen #

    Uh oh. Two glasses of wine and I can see hours of trying to decode that symbolism in front of me…

    July 18, 2011
  8. hey k

    The tantric symbolism begins with the excessive import of the anti-clockwise arrowheads that are part subjugated by an lateral intrusion of similar figureheads – however there is an evening of astral weight when you consider the implication of the singular thrust of the compass weighted apposite influence – and above all we have the spectral dominance of the central quatro of peace.

    …… ….. not bad eh, just kind of flows – bullshit meter at + 100 – I might get a job with news ltd doing horoscopes –


    July 18, 2011
  9. Karen #

    Please tell me you wrote that under a crystal to the tinkling of a wind-chime in a break between tarot readings from your stall at The Channon Fair.

    July 19, 2011
    • no three times, not everybody up here is a forest gnome (heh heh)

      July 20, 2011

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