The Platinum Ticket by David Beynon

The Platinum Ticket by David Beynon
Shortlisted for The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now First Novel Prize

Thursday, 4 June 2009

When you can snatch this pebble from my hand...

When I was going to university all those years ago I lived for two years across the road from this really interesting 72 year old guy. Alex was one of those people who has done everything. I met him one day as I was walking back to my house and he invited me to stop a while to sit on the porch and have a beer (and not in a creepy old guy way, either). As I had the beer (what student would ever say no to free beer?) I discovered that conversation between us flowed easily and the "beer on the porch" soon became an almost daily ritual. We had great conversations, though it was mostly Alex doing the talking - he did have fifty one years more material than I did. It was from Alex, who had spent some time at the end of WWII in Thailand waiting for his naval ship to be repaired, that I learned that for a little bit of coin you can get ANYTHING in Bangkok. ANYTHING!

Ahhhh David Caradine...

This is how I want to remember him.

Looking back now, I know Kung Fu was cheesy. I know it was, but for an eight year old kid it was the coolest thing on TV. I wanted to be Kwai Chang Caine - minus the bald head, of course.

Actually, I really wanted to be Master Po - far better, I think, to be the gent holding the pebble than the poor bastard trying to grab it.

Anyway - it is sad to see him gone. Some reports say suicide, others suggest auto erotic asphyxia. Regardless, the news did not surprise me. All the police will officially say is that they found him hanging in his hotel room's closet with a curtain cord around his neck.

He was in Bangkok making a movie called "Stretch"

Really - that was the name...

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