The Electric Pan-Fire

I am being held prisoner by a gang of Total Desperadoes in a stinking and filthy Mexican prison that crawls with the rats, roaches and lice. I absolutely stink.

I have been here for at least two weeks now and am growing rather impatient, waiting for Clint or Arnie to come bursting through the door and rescue me, shooting up the Mexicans as he does so, making wise cracks in the process and generally behaving like an imbecile, albeit one that I would be proud to know and glad to see.

One of the Total Desperadoes comes into the cell in which I am being held and kicks me about a bit. Then he drags me into a tiny room where other Total Desperadoes - all of them really tough, sweaty and mean - are waiting for me. I get the feeling that if I say the slightest thing out of line then I may get hurt.

A scorching light cuts through the rank darkness of the cell and blinds me. This is all getting rather predictable. No doubt they'll start asking me about the money now.

- Where is the money? one of them asks me.
- I really don't know, I reply. I sound strangely calm.
- Okay, says the big one that looks like a cross between Victor Mature and Anthony Quinn, I'll give you one last chance. Where is the money?
- I don't know, I reply again.
- Fine, says one of them, glancing at the others. There is a kind of fanfare. - Do you know what you have just won? You have just won...a holiday for two in Rio with two thousand dollars spending money and a brand new Lincoln!

The walls of the cell separate to reveal a big television audience. Maybe you don't understand it. A television audience is actually that - a huge audience on a huge TV screen for the benefit of the performer and no one much else.

Maybe you don't realise it, but nothing is much what it seems these days.