Most Days: Off the bus, through John Lewis’s shortcut, escalator, perfumery – makeup counters, into the market. Buy a cup of tea, 50p, open stall, ready to write and sell a few rocks and incense sticks. I’ll write a couple of thousand words. An email presents a freelance job, a touch of research, the days working well. Normal Day.
ToDay: Off the bus, through John Lewis’s shortcut, escalator ‘Excuse me you’re in my way’ Aggressive lady pushes by, sarcastic sigh. Top of the escalator, she glances back, zooms off like a vindaloo victim in search of the ablutions. I see this ‘must get ahead’ attitude every day, I‘ve written about this malady on other occasions. She must be late: Lateness is the cause of, frustration, anger, a rise in blood pressure, heart attack and death. As a child, my mother told me a little boy lost his leg after being trapped on an escalator in Marshall and Snelgrove’s store in Leicester. That was typical of my mother. She blackmailed with fear: ‘Don’t run up the escalator Ian. A little boy lost his leg messing around on one of those.’ she was a poor parent one of her cruellest method s of control was: ‘You will have to go to the doctor for a painful injection if you don’t behave’ as a child it sticks in mind like a whalebone in the throat. I asked her once how you lose your leg, and if there was a way to remove the leg. She biffed me in the ear. The point is: I have been taken back in time, to a memory I could do without. (not really I couldn’t give a fig about one-legged orphans and painful injections).
After all the speeding and aggression, ‘Sarcastic Sigh’ has stopped at the Chanel counter. She takes a sly glance around the store, picks up the Number Five tester and sprays her neck 1,2,3,4,5 times. She hears my ‘tut-tutting’ comment; I smile, the wolf-like sneer indicates she hates me and always will. I am pleased, happy to prove my theory of instantaneous hatred. The idea is, it is easier to dislike someone than like them. By the way, I ask you to consider the benefit of dislike, for one it is cheaper than like. No Birthday or Christmas prezzies and then there is the pleasure of discovering an arch enemy is gored by a bull (no joke). If a friend is mugged by an addict, the result is a boring visit to the hospital, and have you seen the price of grapes. No, dislike and hatred is the cheapest and more enjoyable way to go.
Why did she overtake and then stop at the counter? The London Underground is full of overtakers – Indignant ‘Could I pass P L E A S E’ smug bastards. They’re living in the city and mugs like me on day trip have forgotten the protocols of so-called city life. Well, I tell you what Jack, in my day, I smoked on the underground and every pub in Soho had a resident drunken artist or celebrity. So don’t think your superior attitude impresses this chap. And according to my mother, little boys lose their legs when messing about on the mechanical stairs, don’t you forget this possible outcome of speeding up and down escalators.
I’m on a mission, nothing going to stop the rant. Imagination man has lit the candle in my creativity dungeon. Lights on, the cupboards open and the skeletons are dancing. That’s the way, one seed of thought, one observation, one ignorant, pushy woman steaming up the escalator like a clapped out locomotive. Get tapping the keys boy; there’s an insight into your mind which someone will read. And I don’t care if no one reads the essay, I don’t care about anything today. That woman’s wound me up like a spring, and the only way out is words following words.
To my mind, lateness is a sign of poor preparation or laziness. I prefer to steer clear of the unpunctual. Letting people down demonstrates a degree of selfishness. Our life hours cannot be retrieved, anyone who deliberately wastes our time is a foe. The body is our most valuable possession, and time is our greatest asset. Those who let us down are prepared to waste life-time, it is not acceptable. My new mantra will be ‘Sod of time wasters’ – Yes, I like it ‘Sod off time wasters.’ The four words have meaning and purpose SOTW – How can the words be changed to the order STOW? Sod, time. Of, wasters. No, it will have to be SOTW. Goodness, I’d better stop this I’m wasting your time.
‘Sarcastic Sigh’ watches me walk out of the store, she’s’ judging me. I know her type, she’d let people down. I would win the pound for a penny bet that she is selfish and greedy. No doubt, she’s an inferior, superior and mother of three arrogant bankers. The more I consider this wicked witch, the more I see. No doubt, if the year were 1939, she’d be wearing an S.S. uniform and her reply to my ‘tut, tut’ would have been two sharp reports from a 9mm Luger and the following day would see my family being taken away in a cattle truck.
I can see it now, the whole bloody mess, my brains splattered over the Chanel sales counter. She is intoxicated by the ability to deal out swift injustice, my twitching body evidence of her power over life and death. That same evening her three Gestapo officer children, sit around the dinner table, eating veal schnitzel and sauerkraut are enraptured as their mother recalls the morning incident. ‘He attempted to push me down the escalator, as I confronted him, he denounced the Fuhrer, there was no alternative but to shoot him. They howl with laughter; good days work in the pursuit of oppression.
On the escalator her action demonstrates a get out of the way attitude, it is ‘the road is mine’ attitude of the selfish driver. Ok, she is a selfish road-raged imbecile as well. I can see through this woman persona. The mask is transparent to me she drinks gin by the gallon; she is sure to be alcoholic. Is this the reason she sprays a fivers worth of Chanel round her neck. This aromatic camouflage is a well-known ploy used by gin swigging old soaks the World over. I’ve never met a woman who wears strong perfume who doesn’t drink gin. What! You feel I’m harsh? It’s a tough life Jack; it pays to be aware of any tell-tale signs which will help us through it.
Incidentally be wary of non-drinkers. They have the advantage over those of us who like a beer or two. I am not saying the gin swigging Nazi is forgiven because of she drinks, I warning you if you are a drinker, never trust a non-drinker. I mean it, you’ll get your fingers burned with those bastards, and then you’ll be like the legless child, hopping mad and crying in your soup, that you’d not listened to my advice. Now, I hope you understand this essay is free-flowing, so I’m not going to clarify the sentiment in this paragraph, one thing is for sure, the guidance is from real life experience.
I’m feeling better, the therapeutic exercise of speed writing and limited words have a calming effect. I no longer care about the ignorant monster and the hundreds of other morons who chose to be late, rush about and blame everyone and everything for their inability to get out of bed in the morning. No doubt, if this woman didn’t swig a gallon of distilled juniper berries every night, her life would be better and less stressed.
Times Up – 30 minutes 1235 words – Grammar Nazis forget it. It’s a tough call.