Monday, January 26, 2015
Receptionist: … And when you’re finished with the doctor you can sit here and have some breakfast.
I glance at the ‘breakfast area’. It consists of cereal bars, porridge and various teas. I’d noticed a Greggs across the street. I know what I’ll be doing.
After a while I’m invited into the examination area of the local Private Healthcare office my employer pays for. It is a condition that I come here every six months.
The very nice doctor explains that she is about to give me a full check-up.
Doctor: Are you bothered by me taking blood – are you ok with needles? And do you mind if I stick my finger up your bum?
I’m not in love with people sticking needles in me to be honest. As such, it’s a given that I’m not fond of people sticking anything anywhere else.
Me: I’m sort-of used to it so I shan’t pass out or anything. The needle thing I mean. And I’ve had my colon checked [10 years ago but she didn’t need to know] so I’m fine without that.
She checked my height, weight and blood pressure. She calculated my BMI. She did a load of other things I don’t fully understand. She took some blood. And then some more as she spilt it over the floor the first time. And it hurt like hell.
The verdict is that I am absurdly fit and well. I begin to suspect she is not a real doctor.
Doctor: When’s the last time you checked for testicular cancer?
Me: Erm. [I’m assuming she’s referring to MY testicles and is not assuming me to be very philanthropic and have been checking random gentleman left-right-and-centre]. Dunno.
Doctor: Well I’d best have a look. Do you mind?
I’m confounded. I’ve already said ‘no’ to the ‘finger up the bum’ suggestion so it actually feels REALLY RUDE to say ‘no’ to anything else. And she’s been perfectly polite about the whole thing. I don’t feel I can do anything but agree.
Me: Em. Ok.
Doctor: Drop your trousers and pants – get on the couch.
Some time passes.
Doctor: Well. They’re fine.
Five minutes later I’m in Greggs with a bacon sandwich and a cup of tea.
Thursday, January 15, 2015
I Make A New Friend I Instantly Dislike. As Usual.
I am bored so I go to the pub.
My Local Pub is closed until further notice for reasons I don’t understand so I go to the Rough Pub quite near me despite vowing I never would.
All is quiet. I purchase a pint of Strong Drink and take a seat. I enjoy my drink without incident.
“Maybe it’s not so bad in here,” I think to myself. “Anyway, I’m off outside for a cigarette. I may actually come back here.”
I exhale a lung-full of smoke outside the door in the howling wind and freezing cold. A massive gentleman clad in t-shirt, trainers and tracksuit-bottoms comes out and, after several attempts, lights a cigarette. I ignore him.
Massive Gentleman: Alright, like?
Me: Mmm? Yup.
MG: Yeah. I’ve just got out of prison, me like. Y’knaw.
“Here we fucking go.” I think to myself.
MG: It was all a mistake.
Me: Yeah? [Deciding it’s going to be LESS trouble to actually engage with him]
MG: GBH wasn’t it?
Me: Right. [I am now thinking of the inside of my house, which is not filled with track-suit-clad radges convicted of Murder whilst claiming it to be Grevious Bodily Harm]
MG: Out of order. Really.
MG: ‘Cos I’m schizophrenic. I was off my meds so you get blamed for everything…
I take another drag on my cigarette and think about how pleasant and not full of mentals guilty of murder the inside of my house is. I look my new friend up-and-down. He’s bloody enormous.
MG: Yeah. So I live with my Mum now. I’m on licence. I shouldn’t really be here, drinking. I knifed him. It was a knife I used on him.
Me: [Exhaling cigarette smoke] Mmm.
MG: I killed him because I thought he was a paedophile. But he wasn’t.
“That’s enough for me.” I think.
I go back inside, finish my drink, go home and vow never leave my house ever again.
Friday, January 02, 2015
An Odd Encounter With A Person Of No Fixed Abode.
I’ve finished work and am waiting for a bus.
Whilst waiting, I smile at the memory of an earlier conversation with one of my colleagues – a man almost half my age from Essex who fancied himself a Cockney (God knows how he found himself in the North of England – I believe a young lady was involved) – who had that day been educating me as to the phenomenon of being “Tobied RIGHT off”.
A “Toby” being a “Toby Jug” which is, of course, a “mug” – someone who has been taken for a fool or is not worthy of proper attention. If someone “Tobies-you off” they are fobbing you off - giving you the brush-off. They are treating you as a fool, unworthy of their time.
Such chatter is unusual in my neck of the woods and he’s amused me. Some weeks later we go our separate ways I am genuinely sorry to see the back of him, despite initially despising the cocky young buffoon.
Checking my watch I see my bus is due and begin to gather myself, noticing a homeless gentleman approaching. I sigh inwardly. I have about my person a bus-pass, no money and no valid life-advice.
He approaches me - straggly of hair and brandishing a dog on an actual bit of string.
Homeless Gentleman: I’m sorry to bother you sir, and I wouldn’t normally ask but could you spare…”
He pauses mid-sentence and looks me up-and-down.
HG: Do you know what? [contemptuously flicks his fingers at me] FUCK OFF.
The Homeless Gentleman swivels on his heel and strides-off with his chin in the air exuding an air of superiority.
My eyes and mouth are wide-open. I look down at myself. I’m wearing an ok suit and good shoes. I look around me. All nearby avert my gaze. I look after the Homeless Gentleman, striding-away like he has better things to do. I briefly consider chasing-after him and dragging him to a cash-machine.
I have just been MUGGED-RIGHT-OFF by a TRAMP!
My bus rattles-by and I miss it, so astounded am I by recent events. A person needs to take a good hard look in the mirror when even a gentleman who has NOWHERE to live, has NO FIXED INCOME and no means by which to WASH or do any of the things that HAVING A HOUSE usually involve will look you up-and-down and think:
“Nah. He’s beneath me. I wouldn’t even lower myself.”
I inform my young Pretend-Cockney Colleague of this incident the next day.
PCC: AAAaaaaah! You were Tobied-RIGHT off by a BEGGAR!! HOW BAD IS THAT!!!
It amuses him to the extent that he attempts to fist-bump me. I’ve no idea what he is doing and we stare at each other, him with his fist awkwardly held in mid-air.