To avoid the preponderance of spam emails, crank phone calls and derisory social media posts, all media enquiries, including enquiries about theatre performances, speaking engagements, writing commissions, requests to play harmonica, guitar, piano (particularly Beethoven’s 8th), poetry slam nights, back office readings of Jane Austen, piano accordion, Redemption Train, or two legged stool, should be directed to Lucien “Mumbles” L’Strange, my talent agent. “Mumbles” has no phone, no email address nor has he a permanent abode. He gets no mail, has few friends, avoids people if he can but is a fine representative of those artists who, from time to time, wish to secure a commission.
He can be found, should you wish to avail yourself of any of the aforementioned services, in one of the following locations, at the following times – on the first Thursday evening of the month, wandering the back streets and alleyways of Ankara, seeking out a decent Turkish Pide, or on the third Monday morning of the month, when he graciously volunteers his time, standing under the Sydney Central Railway Station clock offering travel tips to tourists. He may also be found roaming the streets of either Edinburgh or Kathmandu, early every second Saturday evening, playing the piano accordion, usually Country Folk or middle-to-late period Klezmer, in order to lighten the mood and earn a few dollars, or, usually on Sunday mornings or late Tuesday afternoons, sitting in the back corner of a nondescript yet charming cafe and bar in Buenos Aires, dwelling on a double ristretto or sipping an unpretentious yet delicate Pinot Gris, with back palette notes of freshly cut grass, mint and water buffalo, taking his time over a florentine or bacon and egg roll reading either a novel by Balzac, Stendahl, Dickens or Proust, or an early copy of Readers Digest.
You may also find him carrying around a book on the history of early Byzantine architecture or the latest copy of Bait & Tackle magazine. Alternatively, if you’re based in Europe, he can be found, usually on, but not restricted to, Wednesday afternoons and Friday evenings, visiting the museums and galleries of either Prague, Budapest, Naples or Berlin, in between busking in the streets of those same cities with his Barbershop Quartet performing rousing renditions of the finest tunes from the extensive Gilbert & Sullivan back-catalogue.
“Mumbles” also does not carry with him any business cards, has no website, Facebook page or Instagram account to speak of and does not permit the photographing of his image. The best way to recognise him, should you wish to avail yourself of my services, is by aligning any of the aforementioned locations on the corresponding aforementioned days undertaking any of the aforementioned activities. We meet once every three months at the back of an inner city Flamenco bar, though neither of us likes to dance, in either Barcelona, Havana or Dunedin, to discuss the many offers put to him, so you can be assured your inquiry will be treated with dispatch. All contracts will be drawn up using only the finest Nepalese paper produced from the Lokta plant, grown at an altitude not lower than three thousand metres above sea level, you will need to pay for business class travel, accomodation and the use of a guide so that he can travel to Nepal to collect the paper the contract is to be drawn up on.
Please be respectful in approaching him, address him initially as Mr L’Strange, unless and until he invites you to call him “Mumbles”, he is sensitive to light and to sudden movements, although he is a gentleman of immense strength, often displaying this strength by lifting a draught horse above his head. He does also not take kindly at all to foul language or the use of cliche ridden metaphor. Neglecting these fundamental protocols will result in instant dismissal of your offer regardless of its scope and generosity. Because for good or ill, nothing escapes him.