Art Basel and still no wallet
15 December, 2011
Art Basel and still no wallet

Continued from previous week Art Basel and my wallet

Mancho  Ekliani

I didn’t  go to jail.  Also, I didn’t become a famous artist, but the Art Basel did turn into an interesting show, mainly because while I waited for the no good, dirty low down friend of mine Khatia Esartia to creep out of the VIP lounge where she had been hiding from me with my wallet, two very stupid foreigners (Russians) decided to annoy the hell out of me. There I stood

trying my best not to blow past the guards into the VIP lounge, biting my time and my nails, trying to keep cool, when these two badly formed humans swagger up to me, like they were in some kind of a western. ‘Hey,’ said the male form, ‘we saw you across the hall, you look Armenian, how’s it going?’ Seriously? Is that the polite way to start a conversation, hey, you look like a specific nationality? And why does everyone think I’m Armenian? I mean when I am in Los Angeles, I understand, there are more Armenians than there are in Armenia, but in Miami? Oh, right, I forgot. The most famous Armenians, the Kardashians, have moved in to ruin it, like they ruin everything else.  ‘I’m not Armenian,’ I say in Russian, ‘I am Georgian.’ I expected that once they realized I wasn’t one of the Kardashians, they would keep walking just then, but instead they became even more animated. ‘Georgian,’ they exclaimed, ‘how perfect, we were just thinking about you guys!’ What is it with Russians that they just can’t stop thinking about Georgians? Sadly, I told them I wasn’t thinking about them at all. They did no believe me. ‘Oh come, come now, we know you miss us. Why, we just read in some blog about a wedding in your country where everyone sang Russian songs, and cried for good old times. Even your president cried and wished to get back together with us. We just don’t see what the big fuss is about, you’ve had your little bit of fun, but face it, you can’t live without us.’ What was with all the miss us, back together again, crap about? I was getting annoyed. You’d think we were talking about two people going through a break up and not two countries that have been at war. ‘Yeah,’ piped up the female one, ‘admit it, you miss us.’

There was a lovely Chagall right behind the woman, and oh, how I wanted to break it over her head. But there were guards everywhere, and my wallet was stolen, and even if it wasn’t - I can’t afford to destroy a Chagall. I can’t afford to destroy a sand castle, but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t make these two shrivel up and die, free of charge. ‘Miss you?! Well, let’s see shall we what it is you think I miss about you. Could it be your nationalistic racism, your revulsion towards democracy or your - paid off by government sold your soul to the devil - internet hackers? Nope, don’t miss those. How about your cold ass winters, your alcoholism,  your stupid lying government that has one goal in life - to make everyone as miserable as you are? Strangely enough, still not missing you. You know what your problem is? Your problem is, and you will have to face this sooner or later- it is you who misses me!’

I’d like to say that I stormed off triumphantly just then, but the truth is, the woman on whom I wanted to break the Chagall, started to cry. And she wouldn’t stop. She kept mumbling between sobs something about khachapuri, and satzivi, but I couldn’t quite make out what she was saying. I didn’t know what to do. Annoying I can deal with,but crying - not so much, so I tried to leave the gallery without being noticed and walked straight into the belly of a guard. But instead of throwing me out for disturbing peace or some crock like that, he handed me a bus card. There was a note attached to it. Seems that while I was telling of the Russians, my target had escaped from the Art Basel VIP lounge and was headed to Art Miami which was in another part of town. If I wanted to catch her and wring her neck, I had to go on another adventure, this time via Miami public transport. Nuts.

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