More to Me Than HIV Read more

More to Me Than HIV

First published in Gscene July 2020 For last years World AIDS Day I put together a public project of work joining other people living with an HIV+ diagnoses at Jubilee library.For last years World AIDS Day I put together a public project of work joining other people living with an HIV+ diagnoses at Jubilee library. For the project I spoke openly about my journey having being           Read more

More to Me Than HIV: GScene post Aug 2020

More to Me Than HIV is a project that aims to breakdown the stigma that has historically been attached to this virus.  When I saw my piece in last months Gscene to promote the More to Me Than HIV project, I was extremely proud, but a small part of me was filled with anxiety; but why should I feel this way? I have been on effective antiretroviral therapy since the Read more

More to Me Than HIV: first published in GScene July 2020

For last years World AIDS Day I put together a public project of work joining other people living with an HIV+ diagnoses at Jubilee library. For the project I spoke openly about my journey having being             diagnosed HIV+ 32 years previous. Back then there was no treatment and a lot of fear and misinformation concerning how HIV was transmitted. As such stigma was rife, Read more

Howard Marshall 11

writing everyday in October. Anna Nicole Smith, Love After Death

From our Afterlife showbiz reporter: Kelly Ross.

Dressed in a figure hugging, pink satin dress, fabulous fake fur stole, diamond drenched chocker, perfected platinum blond hair and flawless makeup, Anna Nicole Smith made her debut into the afterlife with the usual style, panache and a touch of car-crash that had made her the most talked about woman (after Princess Diana) in the National Enquirer.
Standing at the top of the stairs, Ms.Smith raised her hands above her head, went to speak but instead slurred, “Do you Like my Body? It’s all down to Trimspa you hear?”

When the only response was a whispered, “Is she drunk?” Ms. Smith threw down her hands, pushed out her bottom lip and sulked. Thankfully a lone female voice shouted, “I love you Nicole”, which was just the thing Ms. Smith needed to get her back in her stride as she switched from grumpy brat, to the sultry, sexy, siren Ms. Anna Nicol Smith we are more attuned to.
Assured she had the audience’s complete attention, Ms. Smith thrusted her ample assets forward and swished down the stairs; gyrating her hips in a fashion that one could almost have assumed Ms. Smith was in fact spinning an invisible hula-hooping all the way down to the bottom step.
As was Ms. Smith’s want while alive, she was greeted by the maître d’ with a substantial serving of deep fried gizzard wings, large fries and a diet coke. Ms. Smith squealed with delight, chowed down with a ravenous appetite, which is not unheard of for those who have made the journey into the afterlife, burped loudly and said in her distinctive Southern drawl, “Well this sure is heaven, thank you all, I’s was famished.”
Next came the main part of the afterlife floor show that as always is the main draw for these shows. A ripple of an applause filled the auditorium as the wardrobe mistress pulled a cloths rail with a single dress, hidden under a very pretty, pink silk protection cover.

Ms. Smith squealed with delight and announced she was so glad to be changing her outfit as she was already bored to tears with her present attire.
Next, Ms. Smith was taken behind a changing screen, blindfolded and asked to strip. Not wishing to miss an opportunity, Ms.Smith shouted, “Queue music!”.
The band instinctively began to play, “You Can Leave Your Hat On”.
Unbeknown to Ms. Smith, a back light shone onto the screen allowing the full effect of the striptease to be observed. Such was the performance, one had to wonder if Ms.Smith wasn’t a little aware of the playful prank being played on her.
As the band reached its crescendo, a pink silk camisole and matching knickers came flying over the screen, just as the auditorium was plunged into complete darkness.

A cough and shuffle of anticipation rippled through the darkness as the sound of the wardrobe mistress slipping the dress over Ms. Smith’s head was followed by Nicole letting out a huge belch,
“That should give this pretty dress some room”, giggled Nicole as the wardrobe mistress pulled and buttoned Ms. Smith into her new frock.
A cymbal simmered from the percussion section of the band, as a single light pierced through the darkness.The other percussion instruments gradually joined in while the spotlight expanded until a perfect silhouette of Ms. Smith was once again in full view. Then came the big reveal as the screen spectacularly fragmented into ninety white doves, causing the audience to gasp at just how stunning Ms. Smith looked.
Still blindfolded, Ms. Smith’s voice cracked slightly as she tried to reach out to her adoring fans and asked, “Do I look pret-ty?”
A collective “Ahhh” and clapping of hands, quickly brought back Ms. Smith’s smile.

Once the applause had died down, the Grim Reaper slowly made her dignified entrance, scythe in hand. Again there was a murmuring of anticipation from the audience, which in turn made Ms. Smith let out a giggle and a very faint fart.
Unable to hold back her excitement any longer, Ms. Smith pulled in a deep breath, which in turn put considerable strain on the upper part of her dress and cried out, “Is this when I get my sur-prise? Is this when I fin-ally get the thing I’ve always dreamed off, tell me now, is now the time I fin-ally  get what I tru-ly de-serve?!”
The Grim Reaper in turn, whispered sweetly, “Yes Nicole”.
Stamping her feet in quick succession, Ms. Smith enquired, “Does it begin with ‘M’?”
To which the Grim Reaper again whispered very softly, “Yes Nicole”.

Unable to control herself, Ms. Smith span round and round, shouting, “I’ve got it, i’ve got it, I beat E. Pierce Marshall, I’m rich, I’m rich at last I’m rich.”
The Grim Reaper waited for Ms. Smith to stop spinning and with a quick flick of her Scythe, snipped Ms. Smith’s blindfold in two. As it fell to the floor, Ms. Smith looked down and saw she was wearing a massive white, meringue inspired wedding dress.

Slightly dumbfounded and rather confused, Ms. Smith turned to the Grim Reaper and asked, “Am I ma-rry-ing the mon-ey?”
The Grim Reaper solemnly shook her skull, clicked her boney finger and thumb in the band’s direction, who again hit their stride at once as they played, Mendelssohn’s, Wedding March’.

Meanwhile, the distinctive sound of a wheelchair creaked out from within the darkness.

Nicole had a terrifying moment of clarity as she realised just what the ‘M’ stood for as the creaking wheelchair pulled itself out of the shadows, a musty Howard Marshall, dragged his dusty tongue across flaking lips, smiled a toothless grin and croaked, “I love you Nicole, I’ve been waiting for you baby and the really good thing honey, I’ve got viagra! And best of all sweetheart, sugar-pie, we have all of eternity to consummate our marriage over and over and over again.




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