An adult website has made a porn video on a litter-filled beach to highlight the problem of plastic pollution (Irish Times 31/08/19) ….
It was just after dawn, and a cold wind whipped lines of sand across the deserted beach. The tide was on its way out, leaving a line of debris to mark its highest spot – bottles, nappies, six-pack rings, styrofoam cups, a solitary flip-flop.
And a shopping trolley, because no litter scene is complete without one.
The film crew – all three of them – stood looking gloomily at all of this.
It was the actress who spoke first. Her given name, more years ago than she would admit to, had been Brenda, but when she had first fallen into the industry she had followed the maxim that a good porn name was arrived at by combining the name of your first pet and the name of the street that you grew up on, giving you something like Fifi Braxton, or Kitty Bellevue.
Her name was Tiddles Forty-seventh.
“I just don’t get it,” said Tiddles. “There’s no bed, or couch. No kitchen table, even.”
“There’s no washing-machine,” said the actor, who had taken a simpler approach to choosing a name, and was called Dick. “Like, what am I supposed to have been called to repair?”
“You’re not going to be repairing anything,” said the Director, a much younger man wearing a Greenpeace T-shirt and an odd air of embarrassment, “except the environment.”
“Ah, a problem with the air-con,” nodded Dick. “I bet my line is ‘I’ll have to get my spanner out’.”
“No,” said the Director, “you don’t understand. Just look around. There’s way too much plastic.”
“Are you slagging my boobs?” asked Tiddles angrily.
The porn movie Director blushed, possibly the first time that sentence has ever been used. “Er, no, of course not,” he said. “They’re very, um, upright. No, I’m talking about the seashore. Look at all the rubbish. We’re killing the oceans, and I’ve decided to make a film protesting about it.”
Dick’s eyes narrowed. “You’re not actually a porn director, are you?”
“No,” admitted the Director. “I’m an environmentalist.”
“Then why didn’t you just make a podcast?”
The Director threw out his arms. “Do you know how many people watch podcasts about litter?” he asked. “Almost none, that’s how many. Whereas what type of film does everyone watch?”
“Star Wars,” said Tiddles.
“Porn,” said the Director, as if he hadn’t heard her. “And when they watch this one, they’ll see all the trash washed up on the beach in the background, and it will have an impact.”
“You really are new at this,” said Dick. “Trust me, the kind of person who watches these films watches one thing only. They wouldn’t notice if we had Bigfoot in the background. In a Batman outfit. On fire.”
“The whole idea is ridiculous,” said Tiddles. “I’m going home.”
“Me too,” said Dick.
The Director looked at both of the desperately. “Please,” he said. “I’ve put so much planning into this. I’m spending all my savings on it. It’s really, really important – to me, to everybody.”
He looked so forlorn that Tiddles hesitated. “Do you even have a storyline?” she asked.
“Um, I was thinking something like, Dick here is walking on the beach -”
“Naked,” said Dick.
“- er, well, yes,” said the Director, “and then Tiddles comes out of the water, like Ursula Andress, only she has a plastic bag stuck to her face -”
“Yeuck,” said the porn actress, another first.
“- and she can’t breathe, and Dick, you rush in and help her out of the water, and you rip off the bag, and clean off all the rubbish she’s covered in, and then, well, um, then -”
“Dot dot dot?” asked Tiddles sweetly.
“Er, yes, something like that”, said the Director, by now red enough to be visible from space.
“And where is this dot dot dotting to take place?” snorted Dick. “Standing up in the shopping trolley? -”
He stopped. Tiddles spun around and looked into his face. He met her gaze. They both were professionals. They both needed the money. Most of all, they both enjoyed a challenge.
Tiddles nodded at him.
“We’ll make the film,” said Dick.
“Seriously?” said the Director.
“Yes,” smiled Tiddles. “Let’s hope it sweeps the world.”