Saturday, 28 May 2011

Scratch My Back and I’ll…..Probably Freak Out

So I’m on my way to work, walking at a pace that will most likely make me late but enables a lovely bounce to my afro, because after all what good is hair if it doesn't bounce when you walk. I see a newsagent and decide gum must be purchased because my breath is less than pleasant…and by ‘less than pleasant’ I mean foul enough to make a baby bird cry. Oh little gum, sitting there on your shelf, minding your own business, in all your spearminty glory, totally unaware that today…is the day…that I shall pick you up…AND PURCHASE YOU!!! OUR EYES WILL MEET AND I’LL SMILE. I WILL POINT AT YOU, AND SAY “THAT ONE”, LIKE I’M ADOPTING A PUPPY FROM THE SHELTER. IT WILL BE GLORIOUS, AND WE SHALL TELL OUR KIDS THIS STORY……I then realise I have gone into a strange daydream and have walked past the shop (Note to self: Do not tell anyone about this strange daydream, people will think you’re weird). I take out my surf board and surf back to the shop……what!?……Why are you looking at me like that!?………OK FINE, I WALKED!! I’m trying to make this sound exciting here!! I WALKED back to the shop, picked up the gum that, like Halifax, promised to give me extra, and delicately put it on the counter. I then start fingering my jean pocket until it oozes out a pound coin, and place it next to the gum. The shop…erm……assistant? I dunno, what do you call a newsagent worker? The shoptician? shoptographer? shopodontist? shopsmith? Lets just call him the News Agent…hahahaha………sorry, gimme a sec…hahaha……ok ok I’m good…PFFFAHAHAHAHA NEWS AGENT!!! HAHAHAH………ok I’m done…please continue……oh sorry it was ME telling the story wasn't it……

…so the news agent looks at the items on the counter, then up at me, then back at the items. “Hello” he says gently. Hmmm he didn’t strike me as a Lionel Ritchie fan. “You work at the Nando’s yes??” he enquires with a flare of familiarity. “Yes, hey” I reply in a way that suggested I remembered him out of the hundreds I serve from week to week. He smiles. I smile back. He smiles more. I stop smiling. He keeps looking at me joyfully, as if reminiscing on some interaction we have previously engaged in. Like we had spent a romantic weekend in Paris or something. Had we? I’ve only been to France once, when I went Disneyland, but I’m almost positive he wasn’t there. Anyhow, this was getting a little uncomfortable so I push the pound further towards him and say “Just the gum please”. He picks up the pound and hands it back to me. “It’s ok” he says. “I come, I get the burger”. “oh……cool” I respond quite bedazzled. What does that mean, I wonder as I take my money back. Had I just agreed to something?? I don’t understand, I feel like a child who has sat on a radio when playing musical chairs. I look back at the news agent to see if his face revealed any more information to what had just happened. It didn’t. It simply offered a now slightly sinister smile, so I took the gum, thanked him and surfed out. A couple hours later I am at work serving a woman who is so beautiful I just want to frame her and hang her on my wall…………hang her like a photograph……not like a Victorian death sentence……that would be a strange thing to do to a woman you consider beautiful…plant some drugs on her and hang her on your wall like a mounted moose head. OUT OF NOWHERE in bursts the news agent……well I say out of nowhere but in hindsight he probably came from outside. As he walks in he spots me. I start to panic!! OH CRAP, what is he expecting!? Does he think I’m gonna give him a free burger!? Cause I can’t!! They’re £5.50!! and it’ll have to come from MY pocket…the money…not the burger…what kinda restaurant do you think this is!! A free pack of gum is not worth £5.50!! I could get 11 packs of gum with that money!! Maybe he is expecting another romantic trip to Paris!!………wait, did I just say ‘another’? I can’t go on a trip with this man!! He might touch me!! He might make me a candle lit dinner!! He might want to adopt a French speaking African kid!! AND I CAN’T SPEAK FRENCH!!! WHAT IS HE AFTER!!! I hate not knowing!! almost as much as I hate not knowing who Dr.Who is, he’s clearly the mid-section of a knock knock joke!! HATE IT!! Or like Samsung products!! its like some private joke that they just wont tell me, WHAT DID SAM SING!!!!????

The agent gets closer. ‘I CAN’T GIVE YOU A FREE BURGER!!’ I want to call out, but as though I had no reception, I couldn’t. I can’t give out free stuff, It’s stealing!! I’m a good guy, I ALWAYS stop eating when ‘Save The Children’ adverts come on, and I wait a WHOLE 30 seconds while the guilt wears off before I continue!! “Hello” he says ambiguously. “Hey” I reply as Lionel plays in my head. “I get the burger” he says. Oh God, how do I tell him I can’t give him a free burger!? He might make a scene! He might ask for his gum back!! He might say I stole the gum from his shop!! HE MIGHT TELL PEOPLE WE WENT ON A ROMANTIC WEEKEND TO DISNEYLAND!!! I then remember he wasn’t actually at Disneyland………although Minnie Mouse did have a similar voice hmmm. I look at him, studying his face like I had an exam on it coming up. We stand there looking at each other like two cowboys duelling, while tumbleweed drifts past us. I didn't even want free gum, I was perfectly happy paying for it!! Now I have to give him a free burger!?? …worth £5.50… or £6.75 if he wants a side!! He then makes a move, reaching into his pocket without breaking eye contact. Oh God!! What is he getting!! Money?? A TAPE WITH CCTV FOOTAGE OF ME WALKING OUT HIS SHOP WITHOUT PAYING!!?? TWO FIRST CLASS TICKETS TO FRANCE, WITH A HOTEL ROOM RESERVATION WITH ONE DOUBLE BED, AND A PICTURE OF KOJO, OUR SOON-TO-BE-FOSTERED CHILD!!!!?? A £10 note is placed on the counter. I smile. He smiles back. I smile some more. He stops smiling.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011


I love it when something good comes out of boredom. Its been a while since I p-p-p-picked up a penguin…I mean pencil, so I thought Id do just that…I also had a penguin Smile with tongue out It took 4 hours, 2 litres of orange juice, 2 toilet breaks, and 1 fifteen minute break shuffling in front of the mirror. Oh I do apologize I haven’t introduced you…this is Lauren…*whispers* I think she likes you Winking smile


Sunday, 15 May 2011

The Things a Man Must Do To Serve His Country…Tastefully

chipsSo I’m spending time at my mum’s house and hunger hits me like I had an affair with his wife……stupid hunger, he’s just feeling self conscious about his manhood coz I took his wife out for dinner and afterward she couldn’t feel him…(see what I did there :D I’m well smart, I got a C+ for GCSE English, that’s right, C PLUS!!) Anyway, I’m hungry, and what with all my mum’s royal wedding decorations still around the house, I decide to do my country proud and indulge in some good ol’ fashion fish and chips. Without haste I pop my shoes on and do a running giant leap out the front door, as dramatically as possible. Full of enthusiasm and life, NOTHING CAN HOLD ME BACK!!………then I quickly run back inside and grab my wallet………BUT I LEAP OUT AGAIN!! STILL WITH ENTHUSIASM…AND LIFE!! MY ARMS HELD OUT LIKE AN EAGLE!! WITH WIND BENEATH MY WINGS!!!………then I sigh and run back in once more for my phone……THEN!!!..after checking I had everything…I RUN TO THE DOOR FULL OF ENTHUSIASM AND LIFE!!! and walk out, slightly out of breath, as the neighbours look on with worry in their eyes. As I walk up the hill to the chip shop I get a text from my brother asking me to bring him back something to eat. I text back ‘Is it possible to have bad breath if you run out of breath?’.

I soon reach the chip shop. I have never been in here before but its called ‘Fish n Chips’ so I assume they sell what I require. I order two lots of fish and chips to a man who I presume works there because he was on the other side of the counter…that and he said “Hi, what can I get you?”. He fiddles about, doing what he needs to do, I didn’t pay attention but I gather its the usual routine, casting a line in the fish tank while throwing some potatoes in the air and samurai slicing them into chip shapes before they fall into the fryer. Standard fish and chips practice. “You live around here?” the man asks. “No, just in the area visiting my mum” I reply as I hand him the money. He whacks the first load of chips on the wrapping paper. “Any salt or vinegar?” he asks. I consider his question for a few seconds……then come to the conclusion that seeing as I always have salt and vinegar I should probably say yes. I throw a thumbs-up at him…then say “Yes both please” in case he thinks I’m trying to hitchhike a ride somewhere. He sprinkles some salt and splashes some vinegar……on my chips……not around his shop……then throws in some cod and quickly wraps it up like someone getting evil looks coz they’re taking too long with an acceptance speech. Then the man, who I shall call Yuseff, coz despite his good fishing skills he’s far from “The Man”…whacks a second lot of chips on the wrapping paper but immediately throws in the cod and begins wrapping. “Salt and vinegar please” I say quickly. “No salt or vinegar” he says nodding his head, obviously agreeing to what he thinks I had said. “No no, salt and pepper” I say correctingly……GRRR GO AWAY SPELL CHECK!! I KNOW ITS NOT A PROPER WORD BUT THEY UNDERSTAND WHAT I MEAN!!……right guys!?……………guys?………PFFF WHATEVER!! WHERE’S YOUR C+ HUH!!? “yes, no salt or vinegar” Yuseff replies. “No, can I HAVE salt and vinegar!!” I say firmly. “No salt or vinegar” he says again. Hang on a second……is he trying to say there IS NO salt or vinegar!? Because clearly there is, and unless I am hallucinating right now, its still right there in front of me on the counter top!! Maybe I’m misunderstanding here, so I try again. “I’m sorry, can I get salt and vinegar on these chips too!!” I say as clearly as I can. “NO SALT NO VINEGAR!!” he yells back.

Whoa!! What’s going on here?? Is he being serious!? Is this a joke?? Am I not understanding his joke??……it doesn’t appear to be a funny joke!! My stomach is practically poking out my belly button, holding a kidney and shouting ‘EAT SOMETHING NOW OR I’M EATING YOU!!!’ and here’s some guy messing around with my food!! “There’s no salt or vinegar” he says again. “What do you mean!! you just put some on the other chips!! Its right there!!” I say pointing to the salt shaker and the more than half-full bottle of vinegar. I reach out to grab the salt but Yuseff grabs it first along with the vinegar and puts them both behind the counter. WHAT THE HELL!!? what’s going on here!? Am I missing something?? Is this how the chip trade operates now!? One sprinkle of salt per customer!!? He can’t be serious?? I look over at his serious face……“You live around here??” he asks again. SERIOUSLY!!!? ARE YOU FREAKIN KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW!! “WHAT’S THE PROBLEM, JUST PUT SOME SALT AND VINEGAR ON MY FREAKIN CHIPS!!” I yell. He just stands there unresponsive as I stare at him, slightly concerned I may have wet myself in anger. My belly rumbles angrily too. I’M NOT HAVING THIS!! ALL I WANT IS SOME BLOODY CHIPS WITH A DASH OF SALT AND A SPLOSH OF VINEGAR!!! CAN’T A MAN DO RIGHT BY HIS COUNTRY…AND HIS BELLY!! I BET PRINCE WILLIAM ISN’T HAVING THIS PROBLEM, I BET HE’S EATING A HEARTY MEAL OF FISH AND CHIPS WITH THE MISSUS!! I BET HE HAS A ROYAL GUARD HOLDING EXTRA SACHETS OF SALT AND VINEGAR JUST IN CASE!! AND HERE I AM, POSSIBLY WITH SOILED UNDERWEAR, GETTING DENIED FREAKIN SALT AND FREAKIN VINEGAR!!!! “LISTEN IM NOT LEAVING WITHOUT SALTY CHIPS!!!” I proclaim, quite stunned at the situation, but more so that I had shouted out ‘salty chips’. I return home with a pizza, I’m sooooo telling my mum Annoyed