Dear “Court,”

Yeah, “Court” who “runs” “Points in Case.” Imagine I'm shouting this in your face while really making the quotation marks in the air with my fingers in that obnoxious way they do in America.

You think you're so great, don't you, Court? You must think the sun shines out of your backside. Do you think that, Court? Do you think that the sun literally illuminates the Earth from the crack of your posterior? I bet you do think that, don't you Court?

And what sort of name is Court anyway? I mean, do ruffians play that uncouth game of basketball on you? Do they? I mean come on, that's a stupid name. Only an American would allow himself to be called Court; a true Englishman wouldn't stand for such a thing. I may occasionally shorten my name into a “nickname,” wherein I go by the name “Mike.” I suppose now you think that sounds like “mic” as in “microphone,” don't you? Which is exactly the sort of weak “joke” I'd expect from you, “Basketball Court”…

I must confess to you that I just had to put my laptop aside there for a good 15 minutes while I laughed myself hoarse at my own ingenuity. “Basketball Court”? Brilliant. I also phoned my mother and she assured me it was funny. It reminds me of my friend Duncan, or “Dunk,” as he was referred to by the brainless, unimaginative sheep at the university we attended. Then I was hit by a spark of genius and began to affectionately, and rather brilliantly, called him “Slam Dunk” or “Slam Dunk the Funk,” along with subsequent variations. Everyone thought I was great and insisted on calling him by his new nickname to impress me.

All working class people need nicknames so you know where you stand with them, whether it's “Big Dave,” “The Egg Man,” or “Johnny the Fat Asshole.”You could sense the respect they had for me at the university as well because they'd always credit me afterwards. It'd be a constant thing; they'd approach him and say, “Hey Slam Dunk the Funk!” and then they'd see a muscular figure emerging from the shadows, coiled like a snake. They'd look nervously over at this imposing figure, who in case you haven't realized was (and still is) me, before continuing, “Th…th…the nickname that the innovative M…M…Mike Bellinger came up with for you, how are you?” I'd always nod sagely afterwards to let them know they were in the clear. And as for old Slam? He bloody loved it. In fact Funk wants me to be his best man this year, but I'm too busy (I also really don't want to do it).

I've always been good at coming up with nicknames, like “Court Marshall” (I just spat Sprite all over my laptop!). I briefly worked at this odd little shop with two working class men named “Dave” (I was too good for the shop and Daddy agreed so we took me away from that shop eventually and now I am waiting for Daddy to die so I can have his money). One's nickname was “Big Dave” and the other's “Little Dave”; the kind of nicknames poor people come up with. However, it was actually quite a useful system as “Big Dave” was, well… big, and “Little Dave” was… not little, but smaller than “Big Dave,” who was morbidly obese and breathed like he had one chicken bone lodged in his throat and another poking his pancreas.

Then one day, another working class individual named “Dave” was hired. What a coincidence! This new Dave settled in well, and was soon laughing at all my jokes and wanting to be my best friend. To get my co-workers to like me at this job, I developed a system, which I now employ everywhere I go. At 5 o'clock, when it was time to go home, I would begin telling one of my hilarious anecdotes or reading out one of my short stories to them. (I wasn't convinced that they even knew how to read or understood any of the many, big words I employed, but they would stare transfixed all the same.) I would walk with these dregs of humanity, regaling them with my humor or perhaps scaring the pants off of them with one of my horror shorts, shouting the words over my shoulder to them at a minimum of four to five feet in front as they trudged along behind. We would exit the place of work and camber out onto the street where Daddy was waiting to pick me in his very expensive car.

Then JUST as I got to the good bit, I would hop in Daddy's car and he'd take me home. I'd smile at the sight of the Dave's in Daddy's rear view mirror, still standing gormlessly on the street, sometimes waving their arms up and down or attacking each other in confusion, until they got smaller and smaller and finally disappeared into the night. I'd sit in the back seat smiling smugly, not answering Daddy's questions about how my day went because it was none of his fucking business.

The next morning I would show up to work and the working class hanger-onners would be all over me asking me to finish my tale. Sometimes I swear I'd find them in the exact same position I'd left them the day before, still standing on the roadside, staring into space, the drool on their chins having turned to ice (if it was cold). They'd beg me to finish the yarn I had previously half-spun, but I'd always refuse. Their spellbound looks would then be replaced by crushing disappointment, but they'd nod like compliant lapdogs and run off to work, eagerly awaiting my next new story at five on the dot, which they'd also never hear the end of.

After a while I grew tired of this routine and tried to see if I could get the three Daves to fight one another for sport: “Big Dave,” “Little Dave,” and plain old “Dave,” the other idiot no one seemed to be able to think of a nickname for, which frustrated me because all working class people need nicknames so you know where you stand with them, whether it's “Big Dave,” “The Egg Man,” “Johnny the Fat Asshole,” and so on. I'd invite some of my high-flying friends to watch and they'd always bet on “Big Dave” to win due to his massive size advantage, but I knew he didn't have the stamina, nor the courage.

And then one day it hit me. No, not one of the Daves, although one of them did try to attack me once when I refused to share my sandwich—an idea hit me! It had been staring me in the face the whole time! It connected with a crushing uppercut to the larynx! Anyway, I strolled up to [nsert nickname here] Dave and christened this lonely, characterless, bland individual “Medium Dave.” It was a knockout. I mean, I had to force the nickname home, and it took a lot of effort, and it was mainly me that actually said the phrase “Medium Dave,” but eventually other people occasionally referred to him by the nickname I came up with.

One woman made a joke about the new nickname I created, mocking it and trying to hurt me. She came up to me asking if he was called “Medium Dave” because he was a psychic. Oh HO HO HO. HA HA HA HA HA. YOU'RE SO FUNNY, CELIA (I wanted to say).

Anyway, her house burned down later, so she's not laughing now is she? Maybe she should have asked “Medium Dave” to look into his crystal ball to see if her house was going to burn down in the future, but oh wait, she couldn't, could she? Because he wasn't a medium. Peasant.

To be honest, “Court,” I've totally forgotten what I was writing to you about, so, have a good day, I guess?

Yours always,
Michael Roy Bellinger

P.S. Oh wait, that's it. Why didn't you publish my hilarious and very topical and biting article about [Editor's note: the victims of a recent huge tragedy]? You're so arrogant and full of yourself. Your whole website is a tasteless and puerile attempt to hold me down. Also Court, and don't take this to heart because I don't wish to offend you, but I fucking hate you and I think you're a real piece of shit.

P.P.S. Just thought it might interest you: “Medium Dave” was killed during one of the cockfights with “Big Dave” when the largest Dave slipped in some dog shit and fell on the medium-sized one. “Little Dave” was beside himself with grief, but then another bloke named “Dave” joined and he was alright again. This Dave was actually a bit bigger than “Big Dave” so it all got a bit confusing after that and my memory goes hazy.