Yesterday an unmarked package was dropped on our desks by a clearly misled carrier pigeon. Inside was a dictaphone, specked with blood and crisps.
The following is a transcription of the contents; a self-taped interview between an apparent double-act. We have no idea what the wider context is, or who the intended recipients were.
[Tape starts with ten seconds of fumbling, mild swearing. A dictaphone being dropped.]
Hi Tom, it’s Sam (from Sam & Tom) here. We’ve not been doing too well on the buzz front in the run up to the Edinburgh Fringe, so I thought if we interviewed ourselves and mailed it off, we could cut out the middleman and save everyone some agro.
[There follows a long silence. The sound of an owl hooting in the background bleeds through the membrane of soft static.]
How are you?
Can I open the crisps?
I’ll ask the questions.
[Silence. Someone opens the crisps. The owl hoots up again.]
Why have you brought an owl?
We’re not eating it.
We’re not having the owl after this is over.
I’m not eating the owl, mate. A whole owl? Look how huge it is!
It’s absolutely massive. Much larger than the average owl.
Have you got any questions about the show?
I thought I couldn’t ask questions?
It’s a Q&Q.
What’s the show about?
It’s sketches, but also we swap our minds. That sort of game.
Which one of us is in bold?
I’m in bold because I paid for the Jury’s Inn.
I flew to Milton Keynes because you insisted we couldn’t do this over text.
Why did you fly?
I had all these crisps.
Fine. You go in bold, but it’ll be confusing.
Okay, first question: Why are we recording in the bathroom?
The owl has to be in an enclosed environment or it’ll try to escape.
Who’s your favourite character in our debut sketch show, Unrectifiable?
Don’t say ‘who’, you’ll set the owl off.
You can’t set an owl off by saying ‘Who’.
It’s nipping me you twit!
Why can you say ‘twit’ but I can’t say ‘who’?
[The screeching of an agitated owl, potentially a great grey, drowns out the rest of the exchange.]
…from a park…
What park?! Ff… talons?!
[Inaudible. Flapping, screeching, part owl, part double-act. The sound of a toilet being flushed repeatedly. Silence. Heavy panting. The cistern quietly recocks.]
Did you see that?
I’ve never- It was huge, I don’t understand how it went down.
Did you see it twist its entire f*cking neck off when you had it half dunked?
Those empty eyes. I swear- was it talking?
I’ve never seen an owl’s beak move like that.
The whole owl. Sucked clean out. Can’t believe it.
I think I’m having a panic attack. Can we go?
It’s a long walk to Edinburgh.
We’re not walking to Edinburgh from Milton Keynes.
Of course we are, like the traditional sketch troupes of yore.
What will we do for money?
The plan was to milk the owl.
For all it was worth. Now I’m not sure we’ll get there in time.
When does the show start?
6:10pm, at Dragonfly, every day from the 3rd to the 27th, except the 14th.
What’s it about again?
We do sketches for a bit but also a complex narrative about metaphysics.
Who’s it aimed at?
Like that many men, or that’s the age… or?
Or women, or any gender. Doesn’t matter.
We’d best get some shut eye then.
No. We need to stay alert, I’m concerned the owl may be simply hiding in the trap.
[The rest of the tape has severe water damage and cannot be played.]
Sam and Tom: Unrectifiable
Heroes @ Dragonfly
3-27 Aug, 6.10pm