Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Campus Courtesan

The Art Tsar, Lord Cheese has asked us to postpone publication of his piece on conceptual art. This is pending our own internal enquiries into a spiteful email campaign recently perpetrated by one of our own moderators. In its place we have decided to post another one of the 'people's blogs'. This one was sent in yesterday by a student calling herself 'Campus Courtesan'. It is an obvious attempt to cash in on the popularity of 'Belle de Jour'. And despite its occasionally left-field approach, we decided that it was worth publishing - if only to reflect the lengths students have to go to nowadays in order to complete their studies.

"The new guy arrives as I'm polishing off my essay on de Beavoir's Second Sex. I buzz him in and tell him to wait in the lobby. I figure he can sit there for a few minutes while I finish my work. It's ok to make a guy wait for de Beauvoir. Just think about how long women have been waiting for men...

I chuck on a silk wrap and tiptoe downstairs. The first thing I see is a bald pate and a strikingly prominent nose. Then I notice his long delicate fingers resting daintily on his lap. He looks up at me and I immediately know I've seen that face. My head spins, then I think he is the spitting image of the ex-French President, Valery Giscard d'Estaing. But it can't be him. What would Giscard being doing here in Cambridge? I suppose it's possible that he's visiting academics, perhaps the deconstructivists at King's. They are very much into French philosophy.

He stands up and smiles elegantly. He's clearly a man of class, of breeding. I greet him and want to tell him I recognise him. I can't do that of course; I can't make him feel uncomfortable.

But then, as though he knows what's on my mind, he says. "I know what you're thinking, and I'm not who you think I am. All the girls think I am who you think I am. But I am not him."

And yet, the accent is French as well. How much of a coincidence is that? Poor guy, he must get this all the time. And I tell him, "It can't help that you're French and you look like, you know, who you do look like."

He replies, "Yes, it does not help. And why do you think I can only ever visit les femmes when I am in out-of-the-way places like this? And then, even here it appears that I am mistaken for the great man, n'est ce pas?"

"In a south of England university town it's hardly surprising. Most people would know of the man you resemble. It could be different somewhere much further north like Aberdeen... Not that I'm saying that they wouldn't know, of course."

He looks a little confused and I decide that the conversation is starting to sound a bit surreal. So I lead him upstairs and take him into my bedroom.

"So what is it you're into?"

He opens his briefcase and brings out a pair of handcuffs and a jar of jalapeno peppers.

And I say: "I think I probably get the idea... I handcuff you and then insert the peppers..."

He stops me mid-sentence by putting his finger to his lips and quietly whispering, "Shhh..." He is nodding gently.

And, as we undress I am thinking to myself how funny it would be if he really was visiting academics, the deconstructivists at Kings. I wonder what they'd make of a man resembling the ex President of France turning up to see a lady of the night in Cambridge and wanting to be handcuffed and have jalapeno peppers inserted where the sun doesn't shine."

And he just says gently, "Now, I bet this is definitely not the kind of thing that the great man Giscard is into!"

to be continued...