Saturday, 12 January 2008

Joleon Joleon Joleon

You're a toffee bastard.

On top of the week I've just had, the icing on the cake was losing by a single solitary goal at Goodison. What a sack of shit.

As if icing wasn't enough, a cherry had to be placed right on top of the fucking gateau, didn't it? Rag twats.

There was a small bonus though, in the shape of Roy, who goes in my local, and who is known for his eccentric punts. He had a fiver on the rags winning 6-0 at something like 40-1 I hear, and his ship came in right enough with that last one - which crossed the line my arse. I was walking back home when I was hailed from the pub doorway by Joe, who is a friend of Roy's, and who is known to just about everyone on the Cally. (Funnily enough, I first thought Joe had said Joe Royle to me as he nodded his head back over his shoulder, but he was actually saying Roy.) He filled me in on Roy's good fortune, and I have to say fair play to the lad. Bizarrely, as Roy unconsciously does a reasonable impression of Gerry Adams - albeit a pissed Gerry Adams - he actually supports Leeds.

At the beginning of the week, I arrived at Westminster tube at 9.00, giving myself an hour before I was to be introduced to my new employers. It was blustery, cold and pissing down, and I popped into the little Caffe Nero just outside the station, on the ground floor of Portcullis House to gather my thoughts. For anyone who doesn't know this particular coffee emporium, it's a poky takeaway place, shoehorned into an inadequate bit of leftover development space, but there are at least 5 seats in the window, 4 of which are usable - due to a wall which makes the one in the corner impossible to sit on - and it can be just about bearable to sit and people-watch with an Americano for half an hour or so. The views though, in such a promising and tourist-friendly location, are incredibly grim. Shit, it ain't Roma, but whatcha gonna do? As I arrived, palpitating slightly at the thought of the new job, severely pissed on and having been gusted down Whitehall, I was glad to see that there was a space between two blokes who were already ensconced in the prime seats. I clutched my pain au raisin in one hand and my coffee in the other, then pulled back the chair, saying (with a smile) as I did so:

"Do you mind if I squeeze in here?"

The guy on the right half-smiled back at me and shuffled his chair to make room, but the geezer on the left simply swivelled his head and glared at me. He made no effort to move, did not speak, and after a moment's hesitation, I decided to maneuver in as best I could, and sat back from the counter, almost at arm's reach from it. In fact, there was a perceptible movement to increase the space he occupied as my new enemy inched out a muscular thigh. For about 10 minutes I balanced my Guardian precariously on my crossed leg and stretched out at intervals to sip my coffee, wondering how long it could take anyone to drink a small cappuccino. Then, at last, the bastard bent down to reach into his bag, and I was sure he was about to leave. But, he slowly took a small diary out of his bag and a betting shop blue mini pen before starting to meticulously write on the pages. I could see what he was writing over his bulky and well-muscled shoulder and, watched as, alongside November on the year planner pages, he slowly spelled out LEWISHAM before sitting back and admiring his handiwork, in the process almost knocking the coffee out of my hand.

By now, had I owned a gun, I would have taken it out and shot him, but I instead drank the rest of my coffee and walked out into the wind and rain.

The week had begun.


EP said...

Please tell me this is the start of a novel. You can't leave it here. We want to know what he was up to.

Who do you see playing you in the film?

Myeral said...

Let's have a wiki novel - contributions welcome. I see myself as Daniel Craig, naturally. Later that day, I met a guy who was described to me as 'a senior civil servant' and he sure lived up to the billing, till he was seen on Friday, dressed down in a black long sleeved t shirt and combats!

It's been an education and no mistake.