the man who knew too much

verb [ trans. ] 1 [usu. as adj. ] ( whitewashed) paint (a wall, building, or room) with whitewash. • try to clear (someone or their name) by deliberately concealing their mistakes or faults : his wife must have wanted to whitewash his reputation. • deliberately conceal (someone\’s mistakes or faults) : this is not to whitewash the actual political practice of the government. 2 defeat (an opponent), keeping them from scoring.

DERIVATIVES white•wash•er noun

Ah, so. The painting is done. Well. Almost. F@ck that \”soft chalk\” misnomer on the label; looks suspiciously Caucasian to me – run of the mill white, no Chinese – and in the end required just as many throws on the roller.

More coats than a kraut in Stalingrad.

My muscles ache and to compound matters I do not appear to have lost even an inch around the waist. Rather optimistically, I had hoped to to go down a dress size at the very least. And the ceiling mocks me still with its wan complexion. Like Lon Chaney or Peter Lorre; Factor 30 sun screen fading into grotesque streaks. Cracked and peeling at the edges. Still. Now that Iggy has stooped to peddling insurance on the backs of buses, my wearying ineptitude with a paint brush scarcely makes an impression. \”Search and Destroy\” ? Only so far as you\’re covered.

Myself, I sold insurance for a time, I must confess. An agent of doom in lean times. It was not a good gig. It took me the better part of a day just to put this \’workstation\’ back together. An explosion of cable terminating in an internet connection. I almost didn\’t make it. Round-shouldered and scowling miserably, the temptation to crumble and flop onto the sofa in a menopausal fatigue was all but unbearable. Lacking alcohol, I persisted with the attempt to keep up appearances. And, having unearthed enough governmental hate mail to instigate a suicide in the process of clearing shit from corners, what remained of my afternoon was taken up with the wholly unenviable task of prioritizing and shredding.

All I needed was a rubber mask. Richard Milhous Nixon. Or Gordon Brown.

In the final analysis, as Joe might tell you:

\”You get four guys fighting over who\’s gonna be Mr. Black. Since nobody knows anybody else, nobody wants to back down. So forget it, I pick. Be thankful you\’re not Mr. Yellow.\”

\”Yeah, but Mr. Brown? That\’s too close to Mr. Shit.\”

You\’ve seen the movie. Now we just have to rewrite the last few frames.

Written by Jack Bruce and Pete Brown. Recorded July 1967 – April 1968 at Atlantic Studios, New York City. Produced by Felix Pappalardi.

CREAM: WHITE ROOM from \”Wheels Of Fire\” LP (Polydor) 1968 (UK)


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