Monday, 31 December 2012

2012 in brief.




2012 in brief. 

Frozen dog piss.
Topiary armchairs. 
Holding a large piece of stone. 
Consolidating your Argos bags.
Suggestive trees.  
Killing a pigeon at the traffic lights. 
Black-tracksuit-bottoms-with-white-bits-on.  
A scale model of a baby rabbit. 
BMW slippers.    
All-year-round head-to-toe-waterproof running man. 
Farting loudly by the turnips. 
Carrying things out within the usual framework. 
Stuffing a punctured leather football over your tow-bar. 
Bobbing over when she gets back. 
Avoiding the giant fat ceramic blue tit. 
Talking to yourself in a scouse accent. 
Lapwings, fieldfares, a moorhen, a buzzard, three plastic herons and two dozen bottles of Budweiser.
A half-sized resin statue of a horse.
Girls in leggings, texting.
A big picture window at the front that looks out onto your neighbour's Mitsubishi Animal. 
A lettuce.
Adjusting your cock. 
Predominantly black lycra. 
Eating some shat-out berries on top of a gate post. 
Following a large hare for about fifty yards. 
A pantomime maggot. 
Like To Get To Know You Well by Howard Jones. 
Wheeling a broken swivel chair out to your bins. 
Making a noise like a sheep. 
Power walking: C’mon! Put you arms into it! POWER WALK! 
Another headless pigeon corpse. 
Having a fucking word with yourself. 
Disembodied hands. 
The Most Luxurious Club In The North. 
Shouting into the phone in Urdu. 
The severed head of a stone tortoise.  
Zumba, Yoga for Pregnancy and a Craft Workshop. 
Distracting a rat. 
'Value' pregnancy testing. 
Bootses. 
Wearing a green dressing gown in lieu of a coat. 
Wearing a stab vest.
Jamie’s Italy. 

Sunday, 23 December 2012

At 5.30am, I distracted a rat as it sped across Church Lane.



At 5.30am, I distracted a rat as it sped across Church Lane. It ran headlong into the kerb, bounced off and landed on its back. Very briefly supine, it thrashed about inexpertly, righting itself in a shower of street-lit puddle water before diving for cover under the leggy budleia on the verge. 

I saw a rat yesterday too. This one was also flat on its back. Dead. All bedraggled fur and gaping incisors. It was on the pavement outside the newsagent's shop where they display their 'value' pregnancy testing kits on the counter next to the fizzy love hearts and candy foam bananas.

Surrounded by over-flowing wheelie bins, a collapsed stack of breeze-blocks, a roll of sodden carpet, an empty hanging basket, a discarded moulded fairy-garden water-feature with a crack in it and an unruly jasmine litter trap – incorporating energy drink cans, a plastic elbow pipe fitting and an empty children's bubble mixture bottle – the door was opened by "Beautiful Sajida". "Oh God! What a weirdo!" she said, contemplating the hand written label on her parcel, "But I suppose it could have been worse". Next door, the man whose garden is covered with slippery ginger dog turds was shouting "Shut the Fuck up!" and next door to that, through the glowing window, I could see them there, laughing in their santa hats, preparing a Christmas feast on a large wall-mounted television.


Wednesday, 12 December 2012

“OH, IT’S YOU”, shouted the tall man in the cardigan and trouser braces...



“OH, IT’S YOU!”, shouted the tall man in the cardigan and trouser braces. “I WAS EXPECTING A PARCEL FROM BOOTS'!" (pronounced Bootses). I’VE BEEN EXPECTING IT FOR ABOUT FIVE DAYS NOW! I DON’T KNOW WHERE THEIR WAREHOUSE IS; OUTER MONGOLIA, I RECKON! THANKS ANYWAY LAD!”

The apostrophe and capital letters in Mrs O’Neil’s name were missing, which led me to mis-pronounce it “Mrs One-ill”. She found this so amusing that she had to put her hand on my shoulder to steady herself. 

I caught the woman wearing a green dressing gown in lieu of a coat just as she was leaving the house. “Ooh, that was lucky” she said, slipping the parcel into her enormous shoulder-mounted handbag and lighting herself a cigarette.

At the house with the Audi A6 on the drive and Jamie’s Italy in the window, the man in the golfing sweater told me his neighbours were unlikely to be at home because they are coppers and would be out nicking someone.

I saw three different people wearing flip-flops outside in sub-zero temperatures today.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

At work, the lift was condemned and then, a bit later on, the safety barrier came down on Martin’s head.



At work, the lift was condemned and then, a bit later on, the safety barrier came down on Martin’s head. He said it hadn’t hurt though because he’d been wearing his new trapper's hat and it had cushioned the impact. We got talking about his hat and he told me he found it almost too warm; when he went for a walk in the Dales, there was steam coming off it.

Chris told me his coffee was the best he’d ever had from the vending machine. He said it “actually tastes like coffee”. After a few minutes, six or seven people had gathered around him, attracted by the news.
Later, in the supermarket, when the elderly woman with the grey Summer Wine perm said she’d been drinking a lot of tea recently, the younger woman in the quilted jacket told her it didn’t matter.

At the house on the moor, the door was ajar and I could hear people talking behind it. I knocked. The conversation stopped for a second, then I heard a woman say “Who’s that gonna be?”
“I don’t know. Why don’t you open it and find out?” said a man.
The door opened and a young woman with a long fringe, a quarter length fur coat and skinny jeans stood in the doorway smoking. An older man in a grey sweatshirt with some paint on it stood behind her. Before I had chance to speak, two Cairn terriers rushed, snapping and yelping out from between their feet and began nipping my ankles. “They’re biting him!” said the woman, surprised.
“Well, stop them then!” said the man with some urgency, “Grab them!” She didn’t move, conceding only to hold her cigarette out of harms way. I danced around a bit and eventually stepped backwards over the low gate to safety, kicking off the dogs from my trouser legs as I went.

At the house with the geraniums in I ‘heart’ Playboy pots on the window sill, a large woman in her sixties with short cropped hair and a faded jersey outfit pulled back the curtain when I knocked at the door. I held up her parcel and mouthed “Parcel” to her. She frowned and waved me away. I assumed she’d somehow misunderstood, so this time I mouthed “Postman”, and pointed first to the parcel and then to her. She waved me away again and shouted at me quite loudly “GO AWAY! I DON’T WANT ANYTHING!” I persisted, holding the parcel up higher and shouting “POSTMAN!” Finally, she let go of the curtain and came to the door, “Sorry love,” she said, “I thought you were trying to sell me stuff.”