Roy at Halloween

Let us say that now I am taking a break from the stressful day-to-day, and am vacationing in the mountains out east. I had heard of the fabled Castle Striga in Romania from a 1978 issue of Terrapins of the World, and thought it a lovely place of rest for me and my terrapin Jetta.

However, upon arriving we find that the place had fallen into quite some disrepair. There is dust on every surface, and draped cloths over much of the furniture.

The clerk, an elusive and angular man who calls himself Vlad, assures me that they are still accepting visitors and in fact has one rather famous American musician staying with them at the moment.

‘So.’ I say, glancing at the dusty countertop. ‘I suppose we will at least stay the night.’

After some admittedly relaxing hours in the deathly quiet of the castle, it is nighttime and I feel the need to stretch my legs about the premises. I take along my new leather suit-case, so as to give myself more exercise and the suit-case some use.

As I enter a nondescript room, I see two things that give me a start. The first is a large portrait of the clerk, Vlad, staring down from an equally large frame. The second is a man dressed entirely in black, considering the portrait from behind trademark dark glasses.

‘Roy Orbison.’ I breathe. ‘I did not know you were the other guest here tonight.’

‘So. I often feel the need to stretch my legs during this time of the night.’

‘I as well. Though I admit I am somewhat frightened by such a large, empty building at night in a strange country.’ I glance up at the looming portrait of Vlad.

‘Ah,’ says Roy. ‘Indeed, I have not been able to find the clerk Vlad, and have heard stories in America of blood-sucking creatures that roam these lands.’

I would not think it possible for one such as Roy Orbison to feel fear at folk tales, but he does begin to look rather pale. Perhaps it is the moonlight reflecting off of his alabaster skin.

‘You know,’ I say diffidently. ‘You are a vitally important figure in the world. We should take care to ensure you are safe from any bites on the neck by nefarious nightcrawlers. Any injuries could threaten your importunate singing voice.’

‘So,’ agrees Roy. ‘But what substance can we use to protect me while still giving me the room and flexibility to breathe?’

I begin to dig into my jacket pockets and proceed to pull out several lengths of cling-film. ‘Might this suffice?’

Roy agrees, and I commence wrapping his neck carefully and delicately. After several layers have been applied, I stand back to admire my work. All seems calm, until we hear a creak in the hallway.

‘Perhaps,’ says Roy, ‘There are other parts of me at risk from some malicious creature’s bite?’

My palms start to sweat.

‘Would you have any more of this wondrous protective coating?’

My hands fumble at the latch of my suit-case, and I pull out roll after roll of cling-film. ‘It just so happens I have a little more.’

The hallway creaks again, and Roy’s glasses-covered eyes glance at the door. ‘Then please, proceed to wrap me completely in cling-film.’

I start at the feet and work my way up. As the spools unravel the room transforms from a dusty tomb into a beautiful ballroom, the moonlight glinting off of the gossamer shimmer of the beautiful clingy substance. The portrait of Vlad looks on in approval from within its frame, the hint of a smile tugging at his lips. Soon, Roy Orbison is completely wrapped in cling-film.

‘You are completely wrapped in cling-film. I assure you, you are now completely safe from any being that would do you harm.’

The hallway creaks again, and there is a scratch at the door. Convinced my life could not possibly reach any higher point, I fearlessly open the door and find Jetta, looking alone and worried. I bring her in to sit with me, as we gaze at the cling-film-wrapped pop icon.

‘I suppose it was only your terrapin in the hall. There was nothing to fear after all.’

‘So. But there may still be dangers to you. You shall remain wrapped in cling-film throughout the night.’


As dawn breaks, the clerk Vlad finds us and has me removed from the castle grounds. I return to Dusseldorf early, knowing I could not have had a better vacation if I had been gone a full year.

The Wrappings of Freshness

photographic illustrationArt photography of various persons holding outstretched clingfilm in front of their faces, erotically poised on that fine point between wrapped and unwrapped.  Is it Roy in Clingfilm inspired, or simply inspired?  Perhaps one could never say...

The Flat Tire

This is set in my hometown of Albany, NY. I will write another soon about Roy in Japan, which is where I'm living now. No terrapins.

The Flat Tire

Never had I seen so much rain in my life. I and my accomplice, my beloved chinchilla Passat, were driving along a slippery mountain road in hopes of finding a shortcut to the Greene County Fair. Passat seemed very uneasy in her navigator's seat, glancing over distastefully when she thought my eyes were on the road only. I could tell that she was as worried as I that we would be eternally lost on a mountain in Westerlo, with no sun or visible landmarks in the torrential downpour.

"Sorry Passat," I told her. She lifted her small nose and looked away. My heart sank knowing that she was so upset with me. I began to daydream about the fair and how she would forget this unpleasant trek in the rain once I shared my fresh baked chocolate chip cookie with her. Passat has always loved cookies and other desserts, and I always make sure that if I'm having dessert, she is too. My stomach rumbled angrily and I filled my head with thoughts of fair food: french fries sloppily coated in melted American cheese and bacon bits from a jar, funnel cakes dripping with fry grease and powdered sugar, fluffy cotton candy in every color of the rainbow. It was awful to be so hungry with nothing available to snack on, and my thoughts could not turn from food.

A loud popping sound and a sharp jerk brought me to my senses. I braked suddenly, sliding to a more gradual than is preferred halt next to a guard rail. Passat squeaked loudly, but since I always make sure the seatbelt holding her small car seat is securely fastened, her cries were of fear and surprise rather than pain.

I felt the car sink slowly and as the chassis lowered itself to the ground, so did my heart. I had at least two flat tires, no repair kit or spare tire, and even if I had the equipment, I lack the knowledge and dexterity required for this kind of maintenance operation. Rain poured onto the windshield obscuring all visibility, there were no clear FM signals on the radio, and Passat had now broken all eye contact with me.

"What should we do?" I despaired, burying my face in my hands. "Certainly someone lives near here who can help me..."

And at that very moment, I saw a pair of high beams through the rain. I flashed mine panickedly to alert the other car of my trouble. To my relief, it stopped just short of me, and I could make out through the downpour a dark silhouette. I jumped out of my car to meet this mysterious godsend.

"You need help?" a deep male voice asked. What a shock and surprise! It was Roy Orbison, the legendary rock and roller. Despite the appallingly wet weather, he was still looking sharp with his trademark sunglasses and a black jacket. I felt myself blush hard and made eye contact with the ground. The sound of rain on our umbrellas was like some kind of industrial drum loop, grey and relentlessly pounding.

"Um...yes, actually I think I have at least two flat tires, and I don't have any equipment to fix them, nor do I even know how to change a tire...and my cell phone doesn't get reception up here to call AAA..." Trailing off awkwardly, I shifted my weight to my right leg and continued staring at the ground. How dare I ask Roy Orbison to help me with my car troubles!

"That won't be a problem," said Roy soothingly. "I have everything you need in my van here. I've got three spare tires and all the tools to fix flat tires. I'm just driving around the country aimlessly, so I have nowhere to be."

A truly great man.

At that moment, Roy's umbrella succumbed to the immense force of the pouring rain. He shouted in surprise and jumped back into his van.

"Oh no! I can't ruin this jacket in the rain - it's the only one I have and I've got no money until next week to replace it. Here, I can take it off and work in my shirt sleeves..." He took off his suede blazer, exposing muscular forearms with prominent veins.

"But I can't let you get soaked!" I protested. My mind raced furiously. "Oh, wait!" I suddenly remembered: "I have a few rolls of clingfilm in my car. If you want, I can wrap you in clingfilm so that you stay dry in the rain."

Roy looked unprepared for this unorthodox solution to heavy rain for a second, but his expression changed after only a second's time. "Sure, that actually sounds like a good idea!"

"Just wait in your van then, and I will bring the clingfilm to you."

My heart began to pound with anticipation as I retrieved the clingfilm from my car and ran it back to Roy's van. Despite being chilled to the bone from the wind and rain, my body and soul were warmed by the thought of Roy being completely enveloped in heavenly clingfilm. There was enough space in the back to wrap him thoroughly, he said, and we entered the rear of the van.

"Okay, wrap me in clingfilm!" he said with a twinkle in his eye. Surely this was his first time. It was mine too, yet I was not nervous; somehow I knew exactly what to do.

I wrapped him the way a new mother wraps her firstborn in a blanket; with painstaking care and a tender sort of concern for his comfort and safety. I wrapped his left arm first, then the right, followed by his left leg, right leg, and finally his torso and shoulders. The clingfilm glistened, covering him so thoroughly and tightly that his individual arm hairs were pressed firmly against his skin.

I stepped back for a second, admiring my work, and in my heart fireworks exploded, an orchestra of all the world's finest soloists played the most beautiful song of all time, and every hair on my body stood to attention. Here stood Roy Orbison, dark glasses and all, immune from harm by rain or snow or hell on earth, protected and swaddled in several layers of clingfilm. It was at that moment that I revoked my own atheism, for science and the world of humans could not possibly know such rapture as that which I now knew!

The End

Roy saves the day. A day at the beach.

In this story I am a professional surfer. Disaster strikes but luckily Roy comes to my rescue.
Jetta was settled under the beach umbrella. It was a warm and sunny day. The clouds formed curious shapes as they danced through the sky. She watched as I caught a perfect wave, the white foam lapping around my board. 

 I was just about to catch the second wave of the day. This was the biggest surfing contest in Australia. Many of the top surfers had traveled from far around the globe for this event.

 The wave came and I prepared to catch the perfect tube when disaster struck. The huge monster wave dumped me on a sandbank. As I surfaced I saw my board floating in pieces on the green ocean. I felt sad and disillusioned, like a sand crab getting caught in a trap.

 As I staggered out of the water, pieces of my board in hand I noticed Roy Orbison standing on the waters edge.

 “Bad luck about that last wave” Roy said. “I hope you have a spare board so you can continue in the competition That first ride was brilliant”.

 Sadly, I informed Roy that this was the only board I possessed.

 “Shame about that said Roy, damned shame. Wish there was something I could do to help you.”

 I looked him up and down, “maybe there is” I said. “Can you come back with me to my car. I have an idea”.

 We arrived back at my car and I opened the boot. Inside were hundreds of rolls of cling film. Its transparent softness glistened in the midday sun. “If you allow me to wrap you in cling film then maybe I can ride you to victory “I said.

 Roy stood motionless for a few moments and then replied, “OK .”

 I started at his ankles and performed a circular dance around Roy, making sure not to get any sand caught between him and the cling film. Roy glistened like a Grecian Adonis. The sun sparkling on his transparent form.

 Gracefully I tucked Roy under my arm and ran back down to the beach just as they were calling my name. I lay Roy on his back and amazingly he floated. I positioned myself on top of his cling film capsulated body and paddled out to the breaks.

As I straddled Roy out past the other surfers, I saw her coming. The most immaculate wave was coming my way.This is it Roy” I said

As the wave came closer I could feel the rush of its coolness,” here we go Roy”. As I struggled to stand upon Roy I looked down upon his trademark dark glasses. I could not see if he was frightened or thrilled about what was about to unfold.

As I rode Roy through the icy coldness of the wave I could hear thunderous cheering and clapping from the beach. A huge crowd had gathered to watch me ride the perfect wave on Roy.

Look, is that person riding Roy Orbison? ” I heard from the crowd “ “Yes I think it is” came a reply.

As it turned out I won the contest and was presented with a huge trophy. As I delivered my speech I turned to thank Roy for coming to my rescue. But he was no where to be seen. He had hoped away while I had been caught up in the excitement of the moment.

I felt sad and alone. Only Jetta was with me to share my moment.

  • Current Mood

Modern Times


"You will have to use clingfilm or nobody in their right mind is going to believe it." She said.

I had never even heard of clingfilm but I wasn't going to tell her that. It soon became apparent.

"Cryogenics was in it's infancy back then and totally unsuccessful. If people are going to buy it we need a hook. Something a bit quirky. So we go old tech, not new. We will send you back to the twentieth century and you can wrap him in clingfilm and bring him here. I know that primitive food wrapping is no substitute for the protein membranes we use these days, but I spent hours researching it. I'm surprised you even knew what clingfilm is. I heard you were the best and now I know why! Anyhow that's the hook. We just give him a bit of frostbite, stick him in a deep freeze with a good make up job and we're on."

"Nobody in their right mind will believe it." I said. "Fortunately we are not dealing with people in their right minds so we're o.k" An oldie but a goldy. I was the only one who laughed but I didn't care. In fact it made it even more fun. Someone has to enjoy this life so it may as well be me. I laughed again. This time she laughed too but at me, not with me.

"That's the beauty of the mesh. So much information and no time to check it. Why would anyone bother. As long as the hook is good and it makes you laugh. I've got reams of Roy orbison jokes ready to go on the day. We can flood the mesh with them. Start with the really sick ones first and get more mainstream over a few days. The advertising revenue could be huge."

Sure it would be huge, but not that huge. "What's the real payoff ? No way would you beak the clone laws for that kind of credit !"

Now it was her turn to laugh. I knew it wouldn't be for the last time because she didn't laugh for as long as I had earlier. The thought of it made me laugh again.

"The beauty of it is we don't break the clone laws. We bring back the real Roy Orbison."

I didn't get it and I told her so. Once she explained, I was in. For better or worse.

Since the pandemic the population has been capped at 3.5 billion. It was the only way to save the planet.

Not that many people want to breed these days but they don't want to die either. That's why they have the clone laws. The only laws held in more esteem are the cryogenic laws. It was to do with power and paranoia.

Along with power comes wealth and also a strong desire to keep that wealth. To keep the power too. Forever.

The first attempts at cryogenics were crude. Very crude. Very expensive too. So expensive in fact that few could afford the procedure. What could they do. Some enterprising businessman came up with the idea of just keeping the head. Much more affordable. Dollars and heads flooded in. Then someone got paranoid. What if nobody revived them? What if the world were too overpopulated and nobody wanted them. What good their wealth and power now? Deals were done. Wealth changed hands. The balance of power shifted slightly. The United World States made an irrevocable change to it's constitution. All persons discovered in a state of cryogenic suspension are to be cared for until such a time as the can be revived and cured.

The money and the heads flowed in. If you were rich enough you still went for the whole body. If you were in the know. After a while as cloning gained acceptance people started keeping smaller and smaller body parts hoping it would be enough. A testicle or an ovary were very popular choices. Good choices too as far as the science goes.

There were worldwide celebrations when the first revivals started. The pandemic had taken almost everyone and left most of the rest sterile. Testicles and ovaries were a good choice. So was almost everything else. Then the rioting started. People all wanted to choose who to clone next. The population exploded. The only way they could stop it was to invoke the constitution.

All persons discovered in a state of cryogenic suspension are to be cared for until such a time as the can be revived and cured. Persons. Not testicles. Not fingers arseholes or eyeballs. The madness stopped thanks to the clone laws. It was planned that way. What is the point of being rich and powerful. What is the point of living again if your butler can do it too. That is why the rich and powerful and those in the know still went for the whole body.

All I had to do was go back to 1988 and wrap Roy Orbison in clingfilm. Of course I had to murder him too. This didn't bother me too much because he was going to die on that day anyhow. Of a heart attack.

The trick was to go back to 1987 and drop a time bomb in his drink 240 day time release so that on that fateful day he would fall down dead and the doctor would soon make his verdict known. The world of music would mourn. Some of it anyway. I didn't have the time. It seemed like they would never put his corpse in the 'Ambulance' or so they thought. I had to work quickly. First I gave him the antidote. It seemed to take forever. By the time he started to revive I had already wrapped all but an arm and his head. "What is happening? Why are you wrapping me in clingfilm? Where is Jetta? The last remark made no sense so I ignored it. "I am from the future" I said. You just died" (almost true) "It is important that you trust me. In the future we have the technology to revive you. We revere you as a genius of your time and we would like to have you in our society" An appeal to vanity is always a good ploy. " We could make you young again." Another lie. "All you have to do is sign the document Roy. A secret will. Handing your body over to my laboratory. He signed of course. The cocktail of drugs I gave him left him no choice. No free will. It seemed ironic. He struggled feebly as I wrapped his head and face and he died in my arms. Not from suffocation but from a heart attack

Back to the present. First the bogus discovery of an old cryogenic facility. Shame the power supplies have all failed. All but one. Wrapped in cling film. Then imagine our surprise to find that it was Roy Orbison!

Even better the clingfilm had somehow acted like protein membranes we have today. The will that he signed

handed over not just his body but all publishing rights and royalties for anything published after 1989. Of course no-one contested the will.

Why didn't we consider Roy's part in all this. Sure he was grateful at first. He thought I was an angel when he was first revived and he didn't know why. Until the memories started coming back. "Your the man from the future. Where's Jetta? "

Jetta? The crowds were huge at the first few concerts but the public soon grew tired of him. But not of the Roy Orbison in clingfilm jokes. The mesh was awash. We had started some kind of cult thing. Then He remembered it all. He realized that I had tricked him out of his wealth. It didn't take long for him to work out that I had murdered him too. The trouble was that he had enjoyed it. Said it reminded him of Jetta but he never explained what he meant by that. He said he would expose me unless I wrapped me in clingfilm again. So I did. Reluctantly at first but I must admit that after a while I started to get a kick out of it myself. Watching him squirm. Watching him die. Of course I would have to revive him again for next time.

It was during the squirming that she walked in. This time she laughed the longest. "What the hell is going on here?" she barely squeezed out between cackles. "Life imitating art?"

"No. It is art" I improvised. How could I explain? "If they like the clingfilm jokes better than the music, why not give them a show?" This time she was really impressed. Again. I was backed into a corner. Of course Roy would never let me off the hook. He loved the idea. So that is the truth about how it all started. We have been touring none stop ever since. I wrap Roy in clingfilm 6 nights a week. (Plus our private sessions.) Life has never been so good. I Don't even care about the credits anymore. The only thing that bothers me is that every now and then he gets a faraway look, sometimes a tear and he says "Jetta."
He refuses to say anymore.

(no subject)

Dear Roy,

I know that you blame me. I blame the hippie or monk or whatever he was. The hippie and the cling wrap that is.

It always reminds me of you. Especially the way it clings.

I bet you know what I'm thinking about.

That's right! I'm thinking about a white bull again.

Bloody hippies. Or monks or whatever he was. "All you need to do to calm your mind is not think about a white bull"

Before that moment I am almost sure that I never thought of white bulls. I thought it would be a piece of piss. All I had to do is carry on as normal and I could finally relax. I felt calmer already. I bought him a beer and we talked about philosophy. At least I think we did. The more we talked the more relaxed I felt. So I bought him some more drinks. He said he could tell I was a deep person and a natural philosopher.

I remember feeling even better and buying more drinks. He said, since I seemed to have grasped not thinking about a white bull, I may like to try to learn to fly.

Maybe I was buying him too many drinks and he thought I was rich. I soon put him straight on that one. I also pointed out that the main reason I wasn't thinking about a white bull was because I was so pissed.

Then I told him what a relief it was to not be thinking about the cling wrap,

Come to think of it you're pretty transparent too.

I was slurring my speech and rambling a bit by this time so I'm nt sure if he got the whole story.

The more I tried to explain it, the more he assured me thar he understood.

Despite, or maybe even because of that he offered to tell me how to fly.

Without a plane.

Apparently you just throw yourself at the ground and miss.


You can imagine how much that appealed to me. Me! Who can't do the simplest thing without messing it up.

Surely I could throw myself at the ground and miss!

I've fucked up way simpler things.

I had a go and I almost got it the first time but... and here's the spooky part... just as I was about to miss I thought about a white bull.

I hit the ground hard but I got up, dusted my self off bought another round of beer and psyched myself up for the next attempt.

He tried to talk me out of it.

He said I was lucky to survive the fist time.

He said it was just a mental exercise, that you weren't meant to hurl yourself at the ground.

I thought about what he said and suddenly it made perfect sense.

Here he was dressed like a freak and spouting his buddhist bull shit and he wasn't even game to have a go.


He didn't have the strength of his own convictions.

Not only that but he was jealous. I saw the look on his face just before I hit the tiles.

That must have been what distracted me and made me think of the fucking white bull!

I'll teach this bastard, I thought and I waited till he was distracted and threw myself down again.


I'm not even bleeding this time. But why am I moving backwards?

Two steroid munching monsters have got me and I'm heading towards the door.

"We warned you once already" one of them said. Or maybe both. I think they were clones Anyhow I don't know whether they were lying. Or it could have been concussion or alcohol, or maybe a combination of both.

I didn't remember being warned and I tried to tell them this as I was propelled backwards down the steps.

I wish I had remembered to miss again but I was disoriented.

That is the last thing I remember till I woke up.

It made a nice change to be thinking about the cling wrap.

I still don't know how you talked me into it.

"Think of it as a metaphor for life" you said. Or some such shit. There we are again. I'm a victim of philosophy.

Or is it metaphysics? Metaphysics, metaphor....

They look the same. More or less. Except for the end bit.

But suddenly I remembered that night.

How calm and relaxed I was. Up to the flying bit anyway. What did I have to think about? That was it! A white bull! No. That wasn't it. I had to not think about the white bull.

I thought i would go mad if it didn't end soon. How could I think of anything else ever again? How did I get into this mess?

At first I blamed the hippie. Or whatever he was.

I suppose I still do. In a way.. But I have to face facts. He was just a conduit.

A distraction from the real problem.

The cling wrap.


It suddenly didn't seem so bad. Anything was better than this.

Thats when I called you. I bet you couldn't wait for me to come around. You loved it at first. For quite a while actually. Until I told you about the bull.

I couldn't believe you reacted the way you did. You went crazy. You said I was using you! That is fucking rich coming from you. Me! Using you! Your as bad as the hippie. Or monk. Or whatever he was.

You said I I made you feel dirty!


You are the one who likes to shit themselves while wrapped in cling wrap and here you are!

Stinking of your own shit!

You were always so clingy.

Ringing me all the time. "Let's go camping. Let's go away for the weekend. Come around for dinner"

It was always the same. Out would come the clingwrap.

You were so transparent.

Didn't you carry on if you didn't get your own way! I can hardly count the amount of hotels and motels we have been thrown out of!

All the tents left abandoned forever as we both stormed off in separate directions.

I always made sure I had my own transport after the first time.

"Let's go away on my yacht. We can talk about metaphysics. Or philosophy."

Sailing and philosophy. Or metaphysics. My weakness.

It seemed like a laugh when you first asked me. Almost normal. But we did take a whole lot of acid that night. Any crazy thing seemed normal.

You said you wanted to get in touch with the ocean. That you wanted to be a jelly fish.

The next day you pretended not to remember. So did I. It seemed for the best. Where's the harm?

Then in Egypt you wanted to be a mummy! We were in the hilton for fucks sake.

Of course we were fresh then. Just getting acquainted. Before the shitting started.

I shall never go to the himalayas again.

Himaslayas. Himalayas.

The word itself should have been a warning.

I thought my phone was broken when you never rang for 5 days.


So clingy.

That's why I answered straight away. I thought my phone had been broken.

Imagine my surprise when all you wanted to do was yell at me because of the white bull.

As if I'd thought of anything else! You blamed me, I blamed the hippy.

You weren't even interested in me. Didn't even mention the cling wrap or " Clingfilm" as you yanks say.

All you did was berate me about the bull.

Well I'm still thinking about it and I know you are because you write every other day.


Or we will never be able to think of anything else.

I hardly ever think of YOU!

You were always so clingy and transparent.

I've given up on the hope of learning to fly.


And it's all your fault. Yours and the hippie or monk or whatever he was.

All I ever think about is the bull.

Although I can't quite remember how long he has been wrapped in clingfilm.

Damn you Roy Orbison