I’m a member of WIPS, Women In Publishing Society, and every year we publish an anthology of our work called IMPRINT. So far, so product placement. This year the Imprint launch will take place on Tuesday next week in the pretentiously named dragon -i (no capital letter there I’m sure) in Central – the kind of place where you have to push vigourously on all the walls to find the toilet doors.
Imagine my surprise when, after having convinced a large group of people to pay $150 to come and see me get a free copy of the book, I received the following email from the organisers of the launch, stating that dragon- i was the most sophisticated establishment we’d ever met in,
” … so discreet and sophisticated, in fact, that the manager requests that we have no queue at the door and entrance fees be handled unobtrusively. We ask therefore that to speed up registration you kindly bring the exact amount for entrance.”
What the screaming hell? Are they afraid that some supermodels will spot us queuing at the door and turn away in disgust, never to return again?
Are they afraid, in fact, that we’ll look like real, normal people, the kind of people who would normally not go to dragon-i, and ruin their business for ever?
I immediately told my friends to dress in wooden clothes, smear dirt all over their faces and hair and linger by the door all night, bringing the entrance fee in coins which they would then proceed to count out slowly and loudly and with much scratching of their flea-ridden bodies.
So we’re good enough to bring in the revenue on a slow Tuesday evening but not good enough to be seen doing it?!?
It’s quite telling that the management of “drag – I???” only at this late stage has chosen to inform their paying customers about the door-entering etiquette of their establishment.
If they had done so sooner, I think any self-respecting writing society would have taken their good business elsewhere, and stuck not a few middle fingers up the dragon management’s pretentious, self-conscious face into the bargain.