Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Train Of Thought.

New Year's Eve, and I'm on a train.

I'm in an astoundingly bad mood, and am also six hours away from my final destination. My head and heart are pounding from the conflicting feelings of being very sorry to leave where I am, and being bloody glad to get home.

I start to wonder where the 'twat on the train' is.

It's a rule of ‘Rail Travel’ in this country: you cannot travel a lengthy distance without encountering a stranger - usually sat next to you – that you would not murder with a smile on your face. He is the ‘twat on the train’.

Perplexingly, all is fine. It’s a bit crammed. But that’s all.

With great relief I open a can of strong drink. I’ve had a couple before I got on but it’s fine. I’m unhappy. I’m allowed to be unhappy and have a can of strong drink? Yes? Yes. There is no ‘twat on the train’ so I am ok.

A couple get on and sit at the aisle opposite me. I assume them to be married.

He’s a ‘snorter’.

“Oh God,” I think to myself. “Just don’t say anything. He’s got a sinus problem or something. Just keep quiet.”





His wife seems very serene and totally involved in her book. CAN SHE NOT HEAR?

She must be deaf. She’d have divorced him.


Christ. I’d leave him. I’m not even married to him. Fuck.

I can LITERALLY hear the grotty sputum gurgling around every single cavity in the man’s head. EVERY ONE.

Looking at my watch, I realise I have at least four hours of Captain Disgusting to put up with.



The easy option is to put in my headphones and ignore him. But it’s busy, the metal tube I’m in is crammed with people and I’m unwilling to give up any of my senses. Not when there’s this many randoms around.



I shove my hands into my pockets in frustration and find a massive amount of napkins – the sort you pick up when you have children, thinking they might be handy later in the day.

Slamming them down in the tray in front of the Snorter across the aisle I say:

Me: HERE. Thought you might like these.

Odd silence.

Snorter: Oh. Erm. Did I drop them or something?

Me: No. It just sounds like you REALLY NEED TO BLOW YOUR FUCKING NOSE.

Odd silence.

An hour later Snorter and his wife depart. His wife pauses only to peer at me and say:

Snorting Wife:
I just want to say – I think you are a very rude man.

I think nothing of this, until York, were - with a flourish - I get off the train, and realise a number of things:

I do not live in York, or indeed anywhere near it.

I’m really going to have trouble getting anywhere near my home at this hour.

3) I am astonishingly drunk.

4) I should probably make some resolutions. Along the lines of : ‘not being a total cunt. All of the time.’

I could very well be the ‘Twat On The Train’

Scratching at my unsuccessful Christmas beard, I resolve to not only get home but to stop being totally unpleasant, probably starting with people I’ve not spoken to in awhile.

After all – what could go wrong?


Blogger punxxi said...

there is nothing(almost) worse than a snorter, and to think, my entire career was based on snot!

2:38 am  
Blogger Alison Cross said...

oh God no - so it was YOU that was the Twat on the train this time???!!!!! *grin*

Ali xxx

PS - hope you got home some time in the right year. And got even more astonishingly drunk :-)

9:10 am  
Anonymous looby said...

Just because Mrs has got innured to it over years of resigned marriage, doesn't mean he shouldn't control it when on a packed train. There was a similar one on a train to Manchester the other day who passed the time in doing a revolting and never-resolved preparation for spitting or blowing his nose.

You did right. We need more snot-police on trains. Happy New Year!

12:40 pm  
Anonymous Johnners said...

Is drinking on trains like drinking on aeroplanes then? Do you get more drunk because you're at high altitude or because you're surrounded by other people and CANNOT ESCAPE? Hmmm, that's a PhD thesis right there.
I would have given him a tissue as well, few things are more unpleasant than other peoples' imminent bodily fluids.

1:14 pm  
Blogger Carnalis said...

I have wanted to do that before, but not just snorters - mothers of children with yellow snail trails, in particular.

Yes, talk to people with whom you haven't done so awhile. They will like that sort of thing.

3:52 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Punx: God knows how you managed it.

Ali: Yeah, that was me. And yes, I did eventually make it to the correct city.

Loob: Cheers. May become some sort of bodily-emissions vigilante type thing.

Johners: All I know was that I was unexpectedly slaughtered after a relatively small amount of booze. It was very odd.

C: I really don't think there's much point if I have to make a special effort. I'm an insular cunt and shall just stick with it.

4:45 pm  
Anonymous Johnners said...


10:27 pm  
Blogger Ellie said...

My Man will tell you: I am pretty much a lush. I like drinking wine ... on planes, on the Eurostar, in bars, at home, even before noon.

But, I do not like to drink on English trains. They are dirty and hot and when they are full of people. I cannot handle my booze on English trains. It ends up just being a bad trip.

7:34 am  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Johners: I assume that is not an offer. I think just a combination of not enough food and general unhappy-feelings.

Ellie: BEFORE NOON?! You are a pervert. But I agree re: the train thing.

10:59 pm  
Blogger TwistedScottishBastard said...

English trains are crap.
So are Scottish trains, but they're more amenable to drunks.
Come down here to New Zealand; we've only got 2 trains and 3 cities, so even if you're totally pissed, you'll find it difficult (but not entirely impossible) to get of at the wrong place. We don't have snorters either, we just blow our noses on our (or other's) shirtails

5:17 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Sounds perfect. Ish.

9:22 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How's your brain fart?

Ann Anon

5:51 am  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Oh. Hi. No-one has told me I am about to die in a pool of my own froth, and I assume they would have by now if there were any chance of that.

So. All is well. I assume.

8:26 pm  

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