Alvin’s workshops are always wonderfully whacky, and this one was no exception. Obviously influenced by his burgeoning film career, he presented us with a beautifully presented script, in the form of a legal document. This insisted that we describe truthfully our experiences of the recent alien invasion of Hastings, largely to ascertain that we were not suffering from PAITSD. That’s Post Alien invasion Traumatic Stress Disorder to the uninitiated.
We confessed the possibility that we might be showing some symptoms of this, and fell to work outlining our experiences. The first speaker confused Goodluck Jonathan with an alien, and obviously was in need of some therapy. This was noted for referral to the relevant authorities. We moved on to hear more tales of bravery and survival, though there was some confusion as to how (or even if) the aliens had been routed. There were various suggestions that they had been absorbed into the population, ready to strike again when the moment was right. This triggered some furtive examinations of each other, but happily there were no obvious signs of alienism within the group. But you can’t be too careful, can you?
(That’s rhetorical.)… (OK, look it up.)
Some of the confrontations had been blood curdling. How do you tackle an alien with two left arms and multiple legs, or with mouths at the end of their arms? Several writers showed off their historical competence by referring back to 1066 and all that, and one cleverly re-invented the past with a great story about William the Conkerer’s love of that particular fruit of the forest. The aliens had a considerable cultural effect on the group as they inspired no less than four poems – quite a feat in a ‘twenty minutes to write workshop’!
We visited planet Zog, we chatted to Amber Rudd about palm oil (no doubting Shorelink’s ecological credentials), we touched on Grecian mythology – though I can’t quite recall how Theseus got into the mix. We had a giant armadillo, and, yes, little green men. And the body collectors! But perhaps we won’t go there again.
Thank you, Alvin. Indeed, thank you everyone. I think Tracey from Essex would have had a ball with all that. We are at Westfield next week, the last reading week of term, and the subject is Broken. See you there. Sally