The Diaries of a Sozzled Scribbler
Transcribed by DMETRI KAKMI
12 May 2020
To amend for the frivolities of the past and in an effort to contribute to the betterment of humanity, I secured a private interview with Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China.
I met the Lord of Ten Thousand Years in his private quarters in the Zhongnanhai compound, adjacent to the Forbidden City in Beijing. Prior to our meeting I made it clear that this was going to be a serious, hard-hitting interview. He agreed to answer all questions, no matter how personal or politically sensitive.
S.S: It’s an honor to meet a pop culture icon.
X.J: That is a pernicious, individualistic Western value that must be crushed. In China we say ‘cult of personality’.
S.S: Like Charles Manson.
X.J: Not quite.
S.S: Why? He killed people. You kill people.
X.J; Yes, but I kill them softly with my communist siren song. Besides, a cult of personality such as mine rises naturally around an honored, much-loved leader.
S.S: In that case I will call you Papa Xi, like all 1.3 billion of your terrified subjects.
X.J: It is more proper to call me lingxiu.
S.S: I love lingxiu. It’s delicious.
X.J: What are you talking about?
S.S: Lingxiu, that stir-fry dish with rice noodles, Chinese sausage, fish cake. Oh, my god, look at me, I’m drooling.
X.J: Lingxiu is a reverent term for ‘leader’. You are referring to char kway teow. You can have a life-time’s supply if you give me a good write-up.
S.S: You can’t buy me off that easily. I’m here to expose you for what you are.
X.J: I am what I am. And what I am needs no excuses.
S.S: And maybe it’s time to open up your closet.
X.J: What do you mean by that?
S.S: Nothing. You have been dubbed The People’s Leader and you removed term limits to your presidency. Doesn’t that smack of dictatorship?
X.J: Not at all. Celine Dion has been Canada’s only singing export for decades and no one complains about that.
S.S: Good point.
X.J: She is for sale at your nearest Wuhan wet market.
S.S: There’s not much flesh on her.
X.J: That is why her various bits and pieces are in the grasshopper section.
S.S: Careful, she might contaminate the meat and start another pandemic.
X.J: [laughing] I like you. Would you like to be my concubine? You can come to me when I raise the red lantern.
S.S: Flattery will get you nowhere. Besides, I’m no rice queen.
X.J: Pray continue.
S.S: You were born in Beijing in 1953 but when your father was exiled to rural Yanchuan County during the Cultural Revolution you lived in a cave.
X.J: Correct. My family lived in a humble cave and I worked as the Communist Party secretary in my teens.
S.S: Did you meet Osama Bin Laden?
X.J: Never. He was in Afghanistan. I was in China, where we crush all extremists, except our own.
S.S: But surely there is an underground network of caves by which power-hungry dictators hell-bent on taking over the world and reshaping it in their own image meet to chat over Veuve Clicquot about the end of days.
X.J: That never happened.
S.S: Did you come up with COVID-19 on your own or did the stunningly beautiful Kim Jong-Un help?
X.J: First, China does not need anyone’s help to come up with infectious diseases. We can do that all by ourselves. Second, Fatty Kim is out of favour since he chummed up with The Orange Overlord of America.
S.S: Nevertheless, my secret sources reveal—
X.J: What are their names and addresses?
S.S: As I was saying, my secret sources reveal that the coronavirus started when a group of high school students watched a cursed videotape. They died three days after receiving a mysterious telephone call, and the virus spread from there. Why was this not revealed to the World Health Organisation immediately?
X.J: That’s the plot of a Japanese horror movie.
S.S: Another theory posits the notion that COVID-19 spread from a house where the horrific murder of a woman and child took place and anyone who sets foot in the house dies. Why wasn’t WHO made aware of this?
X.J: That’s the plot of a Korean movie.
S.S: Aha, so you admit you’re in bed with Kim Jung-Jong-Un to destroy the free world.
X.J: You are wasting my time, White Ghost. I have Tibetans to crush, Uyghurs to imprison and Winnie the Pooh to destroy.
S.S: What exactly does Communism mean to you?
X.J: Communism is always one execution away from utopia.
S.S: You stole that from Jordan Peterson.
X.J: Who do you think told him?
S.S: You really have it in for Canadians, don’t you?
X.J: That’s because Justin Trudeau keeps winning The Most Beautiful World Leader Pageant year after year. I want to win just once.
S.S: It’s time Angela Merkel won.
X.J: She’s a dog. Also to be found in Wuhan wet market.
S.S: Why do Chinese tourists abroad spit and fart everywhere?
X.J: It’s a sign of utmost respect for the host country.
S.S: What do you think of Australia?
X.J: I don’t.
S.S: Yeah, but when you do.
X.J: A second-rate banana republic that will become the Taiwan of the 21st century.
S.S: What do you mean?
X.J: We will turn the country into Asia’s sweat shop for cheap goods.
S.S: Finally, how did you turn director Zhang Yimou into a party apparatchik? Was torture involved?
X.J: The Chinese Communist Party does not torture. We crush the individual under a ton of wealth they can hardly refuse.
S.S: Wanna crush me?
X.J: Are you flirting?
S.S: Don’t be ridiculous. I’m a serious reporter from the freedom-loving, liberal West. I’m not for sale.
X.J: I can arrange it with Guo Pei to design your clothes for life and I can order Gong Li to be your wife.
S.S: Oh, Great Helmsman, take me. I’m yours!
The Sozzled Scribbler was born in the shadow of the Erechtheion in Athens, Greece, to an Egyptian street walker (his father) and a Greek bear wrestler (his mother). He has lived in Istanbul, Rome, London, New Orleans and is currently stateless. He partakes of four bottles of Bombay gin and nine packets of Gauloises cigarettes a day.
Dmetri Kakmi, is a writer and editor. His first book Mother Land was shortlisted for the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards in Australia, and his new book The Door will be released in September 2020.