It’s a cold night. Snowing. Icy. I can’t find my black shoes so I’m left to my back up shoes. A deeply uncomfy burgundy pointer pair.
During the 20 minute walk to the station the shoes attack my heels. They are red raw and bleeding by the time I get to the station. Train delayed for 40 minutes. Bad. I hobble to the bus stop. 20 minutes in the cold. Meanwhile the original train steams past. Awful business.
I arrive in London much later than anticipated, a battered mess. I can barely walk. The shoes have cut me down.
I meet my old uni mate and after nailing a dry overpriced gourmet burger we arrive at the Sabotage Times Christmas party.
Some key moments to enjoy.
Bad debate input
My friend and James Montague are having a discussion about the English Defence League. It’s well thought out intelligent debate between two adults. There isn’t a “I was like” or “I’m not being funny but” in sight.
Naturally I’m left out. I’ve tried to jump in but I haven’t got anything relevant to say. So I’m restricted to nodding and watching Owen Blackhurst fall in slow motion on a table.
The EDL debate moves on the issue of a leading Rabbi member. It’s my time to enter the contest.
“Yeah, but there are Jews that don’t like Jews.”
Montague is kind enough to nod and move on.
My mate, who has known me for years, won’t let it drop.
“Greaney. What the hell does that mean?”
I look at him. Give him the “please drop it” eyes.
They return to the chat and I return to nodding.
Meanwhile Owen Blackhurst remains on the table.
Small Talk Implosion
It’s the end of the night. Just the bravest left. My mate and I are sat talking to film buff Matt Harvey. Nice fellow. Well Spoken.
I ask him how old he is. On paper it looks a weird question to ask but in reality it’s gold small talk.
Matt tells us he is 28.
“How old are you two?”
My mate answers “26”
Matt turns to me and you?
Matt looks shocked. He splutters.
“But you’re bald.”
My reaction is that of David Brent, when he hears what the Swindon lot have been calling him behind his back. “Mr Toad…”
As if I don’t know. As if I don’t walk past every mirror or reflective object on earth without looking at my head..
My only retort is that science states as he is older than me he will probably die before me.
It gets worse for me though. We continue chatting to Matt. Putting the past behind us.
Joanna Fuertes-Knight sidles up to my friend.
“Can I get your number for my mate?” she asks gesturing to another ST writer.
My friend politely declines. Explaning he has a girlfriend. He then points at me and says to her.
“What about him?”
She looks. Considers for a second. Wrinkles her nose and shakes her head.
It’s a bad ten minutes for the ego.
My voice goes even higher in pitch.
I squeal. “I’ve got a girlfriend too.”
The emotional damage is done.
I leave. Take the underground train. It’s simple. One stop on the central line then change to Bakerloo to Paddington.
It doesn’t go to plan. I somehow stay on an extra stop on two separate occasions. Meaning I’m pushing it for the last train. I arrive at the station. There’s the train. I have to… I have to run don’t I? In the burgundy torture shoes from hell.
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