A Century Of Elvis


We were sitting in the living room on the sofa, the wrong way round, looking out the window. It was quiet, and then in the car park across the road we saw Elvis – look, there beside the postman’s van, and he was walking round the postman’s van, looking in the open door. He looked as if he was thinking about getting in, but then the postman came back, and he swaggered off, walked past the window and down the stairs, and then at the bottom of the stairs right by the caretaker’s office, he started licking the pavement. Every night now since we moved in that new house there’s this noise outside the door at just about half seven or eight o’ clock every night. And if we go and look outside the door, Elvis’ll be standing there waiting to be let in. And then he wanders into the living room, maybe sits down on one of the chairs or even lies down on the floor. He doesn’t say much, he just stays there for an hour or two, watching the TV. We talk to him a bit, and then around ten o’ clock, he’ll go away again, and not come back until the next night. There’s a lot of lanes and stuff around here, around the house – although it’s right in the middle of the city it seems quite like the country, it’s dead hidden – safe I suppose, made for night living. There’s a lot of squirrels and birds, and Stuart says he’s seen about nine foxes there when he’s jumped over the fence on his way to Prior’s Road. Sometimes you can go out walking, and when you’ve been out for a wee while even you don’t know where you are anymore, so it would be pretty hard for anyone else to find you. I suppose that’s why he spends so much time there, that’s why he’s come to live there, or maybe it’s just the squirrels. I read about somewhere that he likes squirrels quite a lot. There’s these two videos that we got for wedding presents – called the e-files, e-files one and e-files two about how Elvis is supposed to be still alive. And one time when he came round we were watching one of those, but he didn’t say anything he just sat on the armchair. He was playing with his collar a bit, and we watched it right through and then when it finished he just got up and walked off into the mist and didn’t say anything. the first few times he came round I didn’t speak to him at all, I wasn’t really sure what to say. And Karen spoke to him quite a lot – she seemed to know what to do more than I do. He had quite a strange manner though, he’d go into your stuff and look through it, then he’d maybe pick something up and play with it for a wee while, but he’d never make any comment about any of it. Seemed pretty rude to me. I just watched whatever Karen did, and listened to how she talked to him and then, after a while I started to copy that, and tell him a few things, not really bothered about whether he responded or said anything back or not. I think the first time I spoke to him we were sitting up on the mezzanine and I said that I would tell him about me and wee Karen, and how it was that we’d come to be living there. I thought he probably liked the fact that we were living there because he came round so much, so I thought he might want to know how it was that it came about. We did it all over backwards, I told him. First of all we got to know each other, and then a while after that we met, and when we’d known each other for about seven years we decided to have an anniversary, and that went quite well, so after the anniversary we had a honeymoon, and that went well too, so after that we decided that we would get married. That’s why we’re living there now. I used to think my dad was Elvis, but I haven’t told him that yet. I haven’t told my dad either…