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The rat's tale

  Fri 13th May 2022

My colleague tells me of the visit from The Environmental Health to our workplace. On seeing the appalling state of the kitchen, he starts throwing unlabelled food away. Karen, the manager, starts crying. I am glad not to be there. A few days later, she's back to her old ways, leaving the salad ingredients and the bacon out all day long, and a general slovenliness which shows in spilt fat left to harden on the cooker, bits of food left strewn over the floor and a daily festival of cross-contamination.

A Chinese man is much amused with the word "rhubarb", and asks me to write it down for him. I get a piece of paper but he says "no, here," and offers his palm to me.


To Lancaster for Easter. Wendy turns up at Kitty's, as glossy as ever in a green velour zip-up top and a green knee-length skirt. I am asked to investigate a persistent smell from the drain in the back yard. I discover a decomposing rat which is host to hundreds of maggots. I don gloves and wash the maggots away with boiling water before burying the rat at the back of the garden. I stride back in, trying not to feel too manly.

Coming back, I can only afford the train as far as Birmingham, and have purchased a coach ticket for the rest of the way; but arriving at New Street and seeing a train to Bristol on the board leaving in half an hour is too much of a temptation.

I get on and approach the guard, holding a print out of my schedule that possibly might look like a ticket, with a cock and bull story about a cancelled train from Preston. "It's OK, go and sit down." When he comes round, he says "oh yes I've seen yours." You haven't seen anything mate but I'm not arguing with you.

Ceci n'est pas un billet

I sit opposite an elderly and exquisitely mannered Indian man. He asks my permission to make a phone call. I can't help but ask him what language he was using, and he teaches me a couple of phrases in Punjabi.


In Bath, at Linda's friends' house, I have expired from several hours' drinking, and am asleep in the converted loft. The accursed need steals upon me.

The loo is a long way away, downstairs. For some reason I decide that a minimalist outfit of a pair of pants will do, and I run down the stairs and through the living room where they are still drinking and chatting. Instead of carrying on to the toilet, I double back, go outside and piss in the garden. Coming back in, I say "it's OK, just stay indoors," and go upstairs again.


I had a second interview over the internet yesterday. I am attempting to restart my career as a trolley dolly on the trains, which I threw away a couple of years ago by turning up a bit tipsy one afternoon. I'm hoping that the railway companies don't share information about applicants who turn out to be drunkards.

I will find out in a few days' time, possibly when I'm on a Croatian island. I'm going with Trina on a holiday that has been postponed for two years but will finally start tomorrow. The organisers take over a hotel for a week and fill it with DJs playing house, contemporary soul, RnB, that kind of thing, till the small hours of every morning. I haven't gone into detail with Mel about the complicated course of mine and Trina's association. It would only muddy the waters.

6 comments »

6 comments

Comment from: Scarlet [Visitor]

Why do men always assume that a pair of pants is enough? I hope you didn’t kill any plants.
As for the rat, and the state of the kitchen - well that’s put me off my breakfast!
Good luck for the job!
Sx

Sat 14th May 2022 @ 07:06 Reply to this comment
Comment from: 63mago [Visitor]

A jödah Ratz liebt sei’n Kanal.

Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

I wasn’t thinking straight Scarlet. I’d normally spare people the sight of my pasty Lancashire frame.

63mago – I will reply to that one when I can use my own PC to do a bit of research into what you mean ;)

Sun 15th May 2022 @ 13:39 Reply to this comment
Comment from: kono [Visitor]

I’d like to make a reality show… The Adventures of Looby, think it’d be great fun… and you buried the rat… you’re a compassionate one sir!

As i was reading i was wondering about Mel and then i saw the bit at the bottom, muddy waters indeed, i’d say some things are best left unsaid/untold… enjoy my maternal homeland (Croatia) i’m only Jock on me Da’s side. Looking forward to the travel report.

Thu 19th May 2022 @ 13:48 Reply to this comment
Comment from: looby [Visitor]

Well, well, well, fancy you having Croatian blood. Maybe that’s where you get your height from. We got back from Brač at 2am on Sunday morning and I’ve just finished my first shift at work…urgh!

Wed 25th May 2022 @ 21:34 Reply to this comment
Comment from: kono [Visitor]

You are the sharp one Mr. Looby! That is exactly where i get my height from, my dad was only 5′10 or 1.77 meters and i’m 6′4 or 1.93 meters or metres if you prefer, the running joke was i was the mailman’s kid but then my mom told me one day about my great uncles who were both taller than i am… hope you got to nap before that first shift, urgh is right my friend!

Thu 26th May 2022 @ 21:38 Reply to this comment


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looby, n.; pl. loobies. A lout; an awkward, stupid, clownish person


M / 58 / Bristol, "the most beautiful, interesting and distinguished city in England" -- John Betjeman [1961, source eludes me].

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WLTM literate woman, 40-65. Must have nice tits, a PhD, and an mdma factory in the shed, although the first on its own will do in the short term.


There are plenty of bastards who drink moderately. Of course, I don't consider them to be people. They are not our comrades.
Sergei Korovin, quoted in Pavel Krusanov, The Blue Book of the Alcoholic

I am here to change my life. I am here to force myself to change my life.
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The more democratised art becomes, the more we recognise in it our own mediocrity.
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