Tea Totem in Paris
Annie and myself were at Jim Haynes weekly soiree one Sunday evening in Paris where I noticed a well-dressed oriental lady in the room who eventually gravitated to my landlady Annie and invited us back to hers for a nightcap.
Unsuspectingly we followed her into the night. Her place was only two streets away from Jim’s in the quiet middle class 14th district of Montparnasse. We approached the building and almost collapsed when we saw giant painted phalluses all over the metal shutters covering the windows on the street.
In silence, she raised the heavy shutters and in we went. Into what? Another world! Into a very large room like an amphitheatre going down to a lower floor with benches all around There in the middle was a gigantic phallic totem pole from floor to ceiling a bit like the ones hand carved in Canada.
Annie and I could hardly contain ourselves as our hostess disappeared in silence to make the tea. We realised she was trying to recruit Anne for some sort of sect. Not me, thank God.
We gulped our tea and beat a hasty retreat. Outside in the silence of the night, we howled the place down crossing our legs in the street. I have never laughed for so long and so loud in my life.
We never saw the oriental Chanelesque dressed woman again and I forgot to ask Jim who she was…………………..
Jilliana Ranicar-Breese, Brighton Comedy sketch workshop, October 2013.