When we started Talk Club we made a rule: no fighting. Talk can so easily lead to violence: just try telling a Man-U supporter that you prefer tiddlywinks. If he's drunk enough he'll fight you even if you say you like Man-U, or even football.
The first rule of Talk Club is: there is no Talk Club. That could be why nobody ever comes to the meetings. If you ever find yourself in Talk Club, you were never there. Any conversations you remember having are entirely a matter between you and your psychiatrist.
I am the nameless narrator. Some call me Edward Norton and one or two even spell it correctly. Others just ignore me. In the beginning I am a hopeless boracic, addicted to rhyming slang and attending anonymous Tupperware parties. At one of these parties I encounter Helena Boney M. Carter, a road rage supervisor at the local swimming pool which, incidentally, also does not exist.
The plot thickens to spoon-coating consistency.
After a business trip on the roundabout and swings I arrive home to find my flat (or apartment as I like to call it, this being the American ghetto) destroyed by a bum. Some say he is an arse. I immediately phone a soap salesman, as would anyone in these circumstances. His name is Mr. Bradpit and he advises me that my appartment might lack suds and invites me to stay at his place.
We meet at a bar, where Mr. Bradpit attemts to engage me in conversation about the weather. I fight him off with a monkey wrench, he jabs me in the eye with a crowbar, I respond with a gridlock to his contraflow, and so the evening continues as if nothing has happened. Later, outside the bar, he again attempts to talk about the weather. This time he provokes me into responding and we discuss average temperatures for the time of year until we are both exhausted. We go to Mr. Bradpit's house, which is a pile of shite and not at all the spick and span establishment you'd expect from a soap salesman.
On several future occasions Mr. Bradpit and I have conversations outside the bar. They attract other men, some of whom begin to heckle. Others start expressing opinions of their own, entirely uninvited. We move to the bar's basement for a bit of peace and quiet but the men follow. There we form Talk Club, have a bit of a banter, then go home to watch some telly on the TV.
In between the sex bits with Boney M. Carter, who says she is dirty and needs more soap, we forge the rules of Talk Club.
Rule #1: There is no Talk Club. There never has been a Talk Club. There never will be a Talk Club. Is it the Dork Club you want? There might be a Dork Club. Turn left at the library.
Rule #2: No one fights about Talk Club. There isn't a Talk Club. Didn't you read rule 1?
Rule #3: Okay, there might be a Talk Club. I'm not saying there is, mind, but I couldn't absolutely rule it out.
Rule #4: Okay, there is one. Just don't fight about it.