Posts Tagged ‘pints’
Okay, let’s get this straight: I’m a car person. I started driving when I was just a wee lass of 15. I’ve always gone everywhere in a car. Having spent a bit of time in California, particularly in the hardcore car culture of Los Angeles, I can definitely say that I often feel as if I’ve had my legs cut off living a car-less life in Britain. It’s not that I’m “green” – rather I’m simply too skint to own a car. (Subliminal message: buy more books buy more books!!!!!!!!!!!!)
Which relegates me to the glorious dregs of public transportation, where you can experience a lifetime’s worth of experience just trying to get home from an evening out. Mind you, not all experiences are worth having. I mean, living in a cave with Osama bin Laden isn’t an experience I’d wish to partake of. I wouldn’t care to shack up in a cave (or anywhere else for that matter) with Robbie Williams either. Or George Clooney. Or Nicholas Cage. As for Andrew Garfield (oy, such a nice Jewish boy!) … now you’re talking! And let’s throw in Jamie Draven while we’re at it. If Osama still insists on lurking around, we can always get him to make the kebabs. But that meat had better be Halal!
Right, so where was I? Oh, yeah, trying to get home. I can write a book about this, believe me – and who knows, maybe one day I will. Perhaps another in my Erotic Travel Tales anthology series. Erotic Travel Tales on British Public Transport – now there’s a catchy title. Or how about Erotic Tube Tales? Err… no, better scrap that one! Speaking of which, I always need the tube (London Underground to you non-Brits) and the train to get home. Note that I’m not factoring in the bus in this discussion, since I tend to avoid them now that I’m living in the Greater London area. I’ve had my fill of psychotic drivers who slam on the brakes in a standing-room only bus, then sit back and enjoy the mayhem. These early-release programmes from prison just don’t work, in my humble opinion.
The other week while waiting on a train platform, I observed a young couple arguing heatedly over the controversial subject of mayonnaise. And yes, I mean that creamy white stuff you slather onto bread when you make a sandwich. I edged discreetly away from the pair, concerned there might be bloodshed. I mean, a discussion of mayonnaise would surely have propelled even a peaceful chap such as Mahatma Gandhi into the ranks of ASBO status. Things soon calmed down, however, when the fellow nearly broke into tears, proclaiming to his woman in a sledgehammer urban London accent that he wanted to be the best he could be for her (a rather syphilitic-looking specimen), and that he was concerned for her health (bit late for that, mate!). I almost wept I was so moved. Well, no, actually I didn’t.
The night would later reach a climactic crescendo as I walked home from the railway station and happened upon a quartet of lads with pint glasses in hand, whereupon two of them (the lads, not the pint glasses) proceeded to urinate the lager they’d been consuming all evening against some unsuspecting trees. (I’ve heard of taking the piss, but this is ridiculous!) They didn’t seem bothered about me, although that’s probably got more to do with the fact that I don’t look like I belong, since I don’t go around with my arse (and the bit wot goes in front) sticking out from under my skirt or my boobs falling out of my top or – the ultimate giveaway – staggering about shriekingly drunk on heels so high they’d give a normal woman (or trannie) nosebleed. Nope, I’m definitely not one of these fair English maidens who end the evening unconscious in a gutter with an all-new strain of STD incubating in their loins.
Now I suppose I could regale you with some tales of true horror, but that wouldn’t be fair. After all, it’s not all gloom and doom in the big bad world of British public transport. Why, I’ve even had my fair share of romance on these journeys, and that doesn’t include eavesdropping on couples indulging in sweet-talk about Hellmann’s or being felt up in a crowded tube train – which luckily has never happened to me and likely never will, since I AM the woman who edited Getting Even: Revenge Stories remember? Anyway, one time there was this rather curious fellow across from me on the train making quick work of two large tins of lager who kept insisting I listen to the music playing on his iPod, as I was sure to “love it”. I told him I only love Staind. He seemed to believe my love would extend to the song he was playing (and perhaps to him). It didn’t. He was crushed. Bad enough I’d broken his heart, but when he got off the train at the same stop as me, well… let’s just say that I walked pretty darned fast up that hilly road home!
Then there was that proposal of marriage from a rather cute bloke who, in an empty train, decided to come sit near me (thank god for CCTV), only to spend the next few minutes gazing at me all starry-eyed. He finally blurted out something about my being a very attractive woman (so who am I to argue?) and pleading with me again and again to please please let him kiss me. He later called out to me to please please wait as I hurried along the station platform to the exit – and consequently, away from his matrimonially minded clutches. Last I heard he was heading off to Southend (or Sarfend as it’s known round ‘ere).
I admit London is probably the place to see and experience it all (whether you want to or not), but that’s not to say other cities in Britain are lacking in travel weirdness. The strangest (well, it’s a toss-up since it’s ALL pretty effing strange) was in a Leicester taxicab, where the driver held me hostage outside my flat as he begged me to let him take me out to dinner. He insisted he could make me happy; apparently he knew what I needed in my life and he could offer this to me – and I should give him a chance to prove himself. I gotta admit, that would’ve been one hell of an offer if he hadn’t been so keen for us to move to India – though I reckon it would’ve been a lot more exciting than Leicester. He wrote his mobile number on the back of the taxi company’s card, then grabbed my hand, not letting go until I promised to call him. Funny that he didn’t waive the fare though. Now THAT would have made me happy.
Gosh. I do hope he’s not still waiting for my call…
“You JUST couldn’t write this stuff!”
As a writer (or even as a non-writer), have you ever said that to yourself or to someone else? I know I have. Many times, in fact. I’ve seen and experienced things that are so unlikely, not to mention so outright ridiculous that if I’d written them, I’d be putting myself at risk of failing to suspend disbelief in my reader. Usually it’s the kind of thing you’d never dream up in a million years, not even if you’d raided the shelves at your local pharmacy.
Last week I received an email from a television comedy writer who had a big hit series on the BBC some years back. Apparently he was looking out his bedroom window the other morning, only to discover that his front gate had vanished. Certain he hadn’t misplaced it, he got dressed and promptly set off to search for it, eventually finding it in the next street over, leaning against somebody’s front door. The homeowner, who appeared in her dressing gown looking none too pleased at the intrusion, didn’t take kindly to my friend’s claim that it was HIS gate on HER property. She proceeded to interrogate him, demanding to know how he knew the gate belonged to him in the first place – whereupon he drew her attention to the fact that the gate had his house number on it. How did the gate get there? He concluded that the local lads had stolen it as a drunken prank.
A hit comedy writer for the BEEB, and even he had to admit that he could never have come up anything this bizarre in one of his television scripts.
I know exactly what he means. Only last night I attended a drinks do at a pub in Islington (one that wisely supplied my Belgian strawberry beer on tap, I might add). It was a bon voyage-slash-fundraiser for one of my friends, who’s setting off this weekend to bicycle from London to Lourdes to raise money for the Glanfield Children’s Group. I assumed it was going to be the usual piss-up at the pub kind of evening, replete with a mob of Irish Catholics suffering no guilt whatsoever about imbibing as many pints as the Vatican will allow. And that’s exactly how it started out.
…Until the guest of honour’s girlfriend brought out the waxing strips.
Undressing from the waist down to a pair of black bicycle shorts, her boyfriend bravely leaned back in his chair and shut his eyes. In true Murder On the Orient Express fashion, one by one we proceeded to have a go, stripping the virgin hairs off this poor lad’s calves, knees, and thighs. He was even forced to lie facedown so that the backs of his legs could be attended to. Much maniacal laughter ensued, along with yelps of pain from our victim, as both video and photographic evidence were collected on mobile phones and digital cameras – all of which will likely appear on Facebook. Save for a few glances in our direction, the other patrons sharing the mezzanine area with our little group carried on as if nothing unusual was transpiring within a few feet of their pint glasses. And perhaps this was true; perhaps men having their legs waxed in a pub is common practice in north London. Thank god nothing else was being waxed, that’s all I can say. Indeed, I was told more than once that this could be the inspiration for my next erotic story. It’s always nice to have your mates support and encourage your creative endeavours, isn’t it?
(Now in case you’re wondering if this waxing was initiated in order to appeal to the passions of the rural French he’ll be meeting on the way to Lourdes, I’m sorry to disappoint you. Its intended purpose was far more practical and far less erotic: if our bicylist ends up sustaining an injury to his legs, his wounds will be easier to clean and treat without all that manly hair getting in the way.)
Since the evening was supposed to be a fundraiser as well as an excuse to drink, a member of our party decided to round up a nearby quartet of women to have a go, afterward informing them that they must now pay for the privilege. Upon hearing this, their drunken giggling faded in volume, however, they did open up their generous hearts by depositing a pound coin on the table as blood money. After the waxing strips had finally been exhausted, our charitable bicyclist was left with a patchwork design of silky white skin and brown fur on his legs. Little red bumps had already begun to appear on the plucked flesh, and he rubbed some soothing lotion onto them which had been thoughtfully provided by his girlfriend who, in case you’ve forgotten, is the same kind soul who thoughtfully provided the waxing strips. When he finished, he put his trousers back on – an act which seemed to generate far more interest from the other patrons than the act of his depilation. We quickly downed the last of our pints and headed out into the night, all of us secure in the knowledge that we would never show our faces in this pub again. The last glimpse I had of Mr. Sexy Legs was of him being dragged across the road to a curry house.
Which brings me right back to my original statement: You JUST couldn’t write this stuff!