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A House for Mr Cohen

Lemon Cohen



Hello again fair ladies and gentlemen of Victoria University, I am glad to see you alive and well! As some of you may recall, last year I promised would be the last ever appearance of Lemon Cohen, but I’m afraid those of you who believed me have been subjected to a cruel hoax, you gullible suckers. Nevertheless I thank you for the caring emails I received and the ticker tape parade thrown in my honour at the end of last year, it was much appreciated, even though my dream to lead a life as a pirate quickly came to an end when I was arrested by the Coastguard who tried to hang me for my nefarious deeds. I only managed to escape by battling my way out of prison with a whittled down toothbrush for a cutlass and grenades fashioned from moist prison socks. Since my escape I have had difficulty finding proper employment, due to my escaped convict status and my slovenly addiction to cashews. But Salient editor Emily Braunstein has been very understanding, as she herself has previous convictions for larceny and piratical acts and knows what it’s like. She pays me in cashews.
Much has been happening over these past weeks since I returned to university. I finally convinced Floyd to move out of his parents’ three storey mansion in Kelburn and come flatting with me. Even though Floyd is supposed to be my arch nemesis, I am sure that he will make the ideal flatmate, because his diminutive self-esteem is sure to render him vulnerable to my every command.
After days of searching we managed to find an affordable flat in Newtown. Newtown is a hot place to go flatting, as at the present time there are only three serial killers on the loose in this suburb, which is definitely an all time low. The flat is small and damp, and the only lighting is provided by a small 20 watt bulb hung from the centre of an dripping rock ceiling, but it is the best I could expect considering I left the flat hunting so late. I know I should have got onto it earlier, but I think a holiday of sucking my thumb and watching reruns of Early Edition was worth the squalid living conditions I now have to endure.
There is only one catch. Rumour had it that the small dank surroundings we rented as our living abode were home to an ancient cave man frozen in time. These rumours were reinforced by a clause in our tenancy agreement, stating that we had to share our flat with an ancient cave man frozen in time. Only moments after entering our new home we were introduced to this legendary cave man by a hearkening bellow emanating from the darkness and shaking the very foundations of the flat. Our first meeting with the cave man did not put us on good terms with him, as evidenced by the bloody noses and cracked crowns inflicted upon us by his bone club. We named him Krog because that is the sound he makes just before he dashes your brains out with the long end of his club, then lets out a mighty roar of triumph over his slain prey. Also it was on his driver’s license.
The first few days were spent in perpetual fear of physical abuse, with me and Floyd cowering like battered women in our rooms. After this things simmered down, and we came to learn ways of living with Krog. Half the flat belonged to Krog, including the kitchen and bathroom, marked by the pungent smell of Krog’s urine. If we were to enter these areas we were to do so silently, muttering obeisances and praying to God that Krog would not hear us and beat us again. We came to understand that we had angered Krog when we first arrived, through our excited noises and the rancid smell of Floyd’s breath. Once we understood this, living with Krog became easy.
Having said that, Krog is still not the ideal flatmate. He doesn’t shop, he never does the dishes, and he starts primitive fires in the kitchen upon which to cook his murdered animals. Much of his time is spent setting traps for the neighbour’s cat so that he can cook it and eat it, and when we try to remind him of his overdue rent he just spits bones at us. Even though many grievances have arisen from our brief days of flatting, Krog is not very co-operative when it comes to flat meetings. Rather than sitting down and discussing matters like a civilised person, he just thumps his chest and growls until we feed him cold steak.
Knowing all this, it surprised me to discover that Krog is a university student. It turns out he was accepted to Victoria on a special cave man scholarship and is currently undertaking his Masters degree in Creative Writing, for which his central project is his memoirs of life as a cave man, and also a collection of poems. I could go on for hours about Krog, but I do not wish to burden your sensitive eyes with this miniscule Salient font that is just too damaging to read without the aid of a telescope lens and a monocle [hey, at least we didn’t drop letters this time – Ed.]. So I will say farewell, children, and remember: Diflukin One treats vaginal thrush orally. Cheerio!