There was an open-air screening of the Star Wars trilogy at this year’s simian convention. After watching The Empire Strikes Back a chimpanzee approached me with a puzzled look on his face.
“If Luke Skywalker was really Darth Vader’s son, why wasn’t he called Luke Vader?” he asked.
“You silly nitwit!” I exclaimed. “Lord Vader obviously wasn’t the type to marry a woman and play happy families. He must have had a brief but torrid affair with Luke’s mother in some remote outpost lacking a drug store.”
“I still don’t buy it,” replied the chimp. “How come they looked so different if they were father and son?”
He had a point. The family resemblance was zero – indeed they hardly seemed to belong to the same species. Mr Vader’s peculiar costume did admittedly obscure his features, but what about his deep throaty voice? A man who spoke like that shouldn’t have sired a squeaky little whelp like Skywalker.
“You have to allow some creative licence in these movies,” I said to the chimp. “In any case, we don’t really know what Darth Vader looked like as a young man. Humans change a lot in appearance as they age.”
The chimpanzee pursed his lips and trotted off while I pondered the problem of detecting a family likeness in humans.
Back in my circus days, a theatre producer told me about a stage version of Star Wars he was planning.
“I’m so thrilled about it!” he enthused. “I’ve hired Bill Solly, who wrote the songs for Boy Meets Boy. He’s already composed a fabulous duet for Han Solo and Luke Skywalker that brought a tear to my eye! It’s called The Space Between Us.”
“I don’t see how you’ll manage the special effects,” I said. “What about the sword fights with those luminous blades that suddenly poke out of the hilt?”
“I’ve thought of an ingenious substitute!” he declared. “The actors in those scenes will have a florescent cucumber hidden up their sleeve. A jerk of the wrist and hey presto, it will pop out into their hand!”
“You’d better remind the cast that biting an opponent’s cucumber is not a legitimate form of self defence,” I remarked.
He shrieked and clapped his hands before flouncing off. When he later offered me the part of Chewbacca (the braying overgrown Teddy Bear) I told him where he could stick his cucumber. The show never got off the ground, which was just as well because Star Wars wouldn’t have worked as a gay pantomime – Princess Leia’s sexual chemistry with Han Solo is too important to the story.
Speaking of which, Carrie Fisher has revealed that her movie flirtation with Harrison Ford was accompanied by all sorts of hanky-panky off-screen. On one occasion she found her rugged co-star naked in her closet. It didn’t seem to bother her, probably because she admitted to having a huge crush on him. It makes me wonder if a man can ever go wrong by appearing unclothed before a woman who fancies him.
Of course, a naked man who infiltrates a woman’s private space is generally up to no good. I was shocked to hear of a pervert who broke into the home of an 88-year-old woman in Portland and confronted the old lady in the nude. She immediately grabbed hold of his genitals and squeezed them with a force that was far too great to bring him any pleasure. He ran away yelping, but was later apprehended by the police.
The woman’s behaviour reminds me of Sassy Miss Kara, a fierce little minx who also lives in Portland. I recall her once boasting of the manoeuvres she had learned to maim any man who dared to molest her. Such skills are often passed down the maternal line, which brings us once again to the question of family resemblance. Is the dick-crushing dowager Miss Kara’s grandmother? I await her answer with dignified patience.
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