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This is a question Will you go out with me?

"Bloody Kraut, a" asks, "How did you get your current flame to go out with you? If they turned you down, how bad was it?"

Was it all romantic? Or were the beer goggles particularly strong that night?

(, Thu 28 Aug 2008, 17:32)
Pages: Latest, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, ... 1

This question is now closed.

My Childhood Sweetheart
She had large brown eyes and long wavy hair worn in plaits tied with navy blue ribbons.

When she smiled the room lit up and when we all played kiss-chase she never ran from me.

We were both five when I proposed and from that day on for two years each morning we could be found sitting on the steps outside our classroom repeating the same words to each other –
“I’m going to marry you when I grow up”


When we were seven and the allure of an older woman who owned her own jumbo sized pencil-sharpener became too great I faltered.

My lovely brown-eyed fiancée was told that I was going out with Clare H now and I no longer loved her in her pencil-sharpenerless state.

She cried and I felt like a heel.

Even stories of Little Black Sambo who outwitted the tigers and ate pancakes for tea couldn’t cheer me up.

Each time I glanced around the classroom her large brown eyes would find me and silently plead with me but my hand was held fast in a sweaty embrace with Clare and our love was sealed by her placing her pencil-sharpener into my pencil case.

Young love is a fickle beast and soon my relationship with the sweaty-handed Clare was over and I was once again single and sharpener-free.



I was always one of the lads and my days were taken up with football and playing Superheroes.

All of the girls refused our pleas to be our Wonder Woman or Bat Girl.
The girls wanted to play house under the rhododendron bushes, collect the fallen blossom or play strange clapping games.
A few fast and loose ones would entice you into a rhododendron house, lie on the beaten earth and lift their skirts so you could see their knickers.
None of us lads were interested in their cotton undies with the days of the week printed upon them – these could not match our pants with ThunderCats emblazoned upon them.

One girl finally accepted our offer to be Wonderwoman, to eschew the draw of flowers, house and other girl games, one girl saw how good the Superhero game was - the girl with the large brown eyes and wavy hair; she would be Wonder Woman for me.


Soon we were nearing the end of our long days in Primary school. We had all been split up, girls no longer talking to or sitting with boys, separate games lessons, boys smelled and girls were bitchy.

One girl was always in trouble with the teachers.
One girl was to be punished for her constant chattering to other girls.
She was to be sat next to a boy as surely the conversations would cease.

And so it came to pass that my wavy haired, brown eyed girl sat next to me.

Each Monday morning would be spent in giggles as I re-enacted Saturday night’s ‘Jim’ll Fix It’ for her with the aid of my novelty cigar biro pen.


Each Monday afternoon would be spent in detention – each of us smiling gently at the other.


And then the end came – off we went in separate directions to different schools – she to an all-girls’ grammar and I to a mixed comp.


I had been at my new school for a few weeks when I saw Diana – she was fifteen, blonde and stunning.

I found out that she lived in my village and I began a determined effort of stalking her. I followed her each Friday evening when she went to the youth club. I played pool with my friends and Diana, lovely Diana disappeared behind the back of the youth club hut and smoked with the local bad lads.


Then quite out of the blue I received a telephone call.

It was from the girl with the large brown eyes and wavy hair.

“Hello Richard. I’mgoingtoadisconextFridayeveningwouldyouliketocomewithme?”

“Um….”

“……”

“I’ll have to ask my mum. I’ll ring you back.”

Friday nights were Diana’s.

Diana had big bouncy breasts and smoked cigarettes.

I phoned the girl with the large brown eyes and wavy hair; I told her I had to visit my Aunt on that Friday, but thanks anyway for the invitation.


She never called again.


Another year passed, I grew by six inches and my mates sent me into the Offie for cans of Stella.

I still went to the Youth Club with its twin attractions of Diana and the pool table.

Then one evening Diana invited me around the back for a fag.

She leaned forward and kissed me gently, her lips were damp and her breath was heavy with Silk Cut and cheap cider.

My mates stood and watched, each drawing deeply on their cigarettes and laughing about Diana’s friends in their short skirts and large thighs.

I slid my hand up her white blouse until I could feel the silken smoothness of her bra. I kissed her deeper, my virgin tongue slipping in and probing her warm wet mouth. My hand cupped her lacy clad breast and my engorged cock began to nudge against her thigh. Her tongue began to respond to mine by twisting and circling in a way that I thought was sexy in a HotPoint kind of way. I kneaded and pulled gently at her tit, feeling her hard little nipple dance in my inky fingers. Diana’s fingers were playing with the waistband of my jeans, sharp fingernails were scratching my stomach and I could bear it no longer. I took her hand and shoved it down onto my rock hard pork sword and as her cool fingertips made contact I spluffed into my boxers.

“Will you go out with me?” I groaned to Diana as my brain began its slow journey back up to my skull.

“Nah. You’re cute right. But I like a man who can go all night. Wanna fag?”


Fifteen years passed.

During that time I shagged my way through Uni and across the world.

Diana I found out now had four kids and a loyalty card for IceLand.

That summer I received an invitation to a wedding of an old mate I’d studied with in Uni – a bit of a bastard if I’m being truthful, but it was the opportunity to get drunk at his expense, catch up with old mates and maybe even get laid.


I expect you can guess who the bride was…when I saw the invitation I did a double take – she has a very unusual name the girl with big brown eyes and wavy hair.


I went to the wedding and watched my first love walk up the aisle.

I watched her marry a man whom I know is a bastard.

I watched her marry a man whom I know was unfaithful to her during his stag night – I know because I was there right along side him as we both screwed working girls for £60 each.



After the ceremony I finally got chatting to her, my wavy haired, brown eyed girl.

I reminded her of her promise to marry me when she grew up. She laughed and just as when she’d been a child, her laughter and smiles lit up the room.


And finally I had the courage to say to her what I should have said long ago,

“Will you go out with me?”


She laughed again and told me that if ever things went wrong with her marriage I’d be the first one she’d contact.





Six months later she called me.
(, Mon 1 Sep 2008, 16:39, 15 replies)
it started with a kiss
He was dressed as Harry Potter, if Harry Potter was 22 and cute. I had come as a goldfish. Harry Potter was the best friend of my then-squeeze, the Garden Gnome. As fancy dress events go we had pulled out some but not all of the stops.

Harry Potter and I were getting drunk near the bar. It was late. It was late and it was rather odd. His dad wandered past in a grass skirt and coconut shell bikini. I kept drinking because it seemed like the right thing to do.

"How about a kiss then?" asked Harry. I obliged with a peck on the cheek, leaving a trail of gold glitter across his face.

"No, a kiss like this," sez he, and grabbed Garden Gnome in an entertaining bloke-on-bloke tongue-heavy snog that probably shouldn't have aroused me quite as much as it did.

"I'll have some of that, " I thought, and slid myself between the pair of them, magic wand on one side, fishing rod on the other. In typical drunken fashion, no one seemed to notice, and in fact their parents waved goodbye when we said we were off home for more beer.

My goldfish tail was fastened with velcro, a tip I recommend for any impromptu sexual encounters. Harry Potter was out of that uniform pretty sharpish and Garden Gnome lost the cotton wool beard along with the last of his inhibitions.

It is slightly surreal to wake up between an overgrown boy wizard and a living lawn ornament, but it's even more surreal when the lawn ornament's mother taps politely on the bedroom door to offer toast. Not as surreal though, as hearing one hungover friend explain to another that it was purely by accident that he'd licked his best mate's balls.
(, Sun 31 Aug 2008, 20:09, 9 replies)
Put the kettle on, make a cuppa, sit back and read the story of Che & Xena
One of the first reasons why I wanted to stay with Xena for the rest of my life was because of where we met.

Seriously. I thought to myself: 'Wouldn't it be great, if in years to come, when people asked you where you met, you could say: "We met in a Family Planning Clinic....in Soho"'. If you're reading this, and you know me, now you'll know who Che Grimsdale really is, because I guess there aren't many couples who can say that.

Back in the summer of 1985 I was working for a temp agency in London called Catch 22. I think the catch went something like: you want work, we will send you on shit assignments, if you complain, we won't send you on any more, if you don't complain, we will.' That's some catch that Catch 22.

I did some interesting work with Catch 22. One of my favourites was the Hilti drills warehouse near Wormwood Scrubs where I worked with a guy who’d been a helicopter engineer in the Falklands amongst others. We used to have pallet hand-cart races around the warehouse. Another time I was commissionaire for an office block next door to the South African embassy just off Trafalgar Square, I was post-room boy at Readers Digest in one of the posh London squares and for Olivetti in Clapham or somewhere and for a while I was a driver's mate for the Bloomsbury Health Authority. The guy I worked with was Portugese - can't remember his name - and our job was picking up the laundry from the various hospitals and clinics in the area and taking them back to the big laundry in one of the large hospitals, possibly the Middlesex.

It meant early starts but our first stop would always be for a coffee at one of the little Italian cafes somewhere in the West End that was open early for cabbies etc. I vividly remember one morning...we'd just got our coffees, which were in polystyrene cups with those annoyingly tight-fitting lids; I was sat on the passenger side of the van while Luis (now I come to think about it, I’m fairly sure that was his name) drove. As all the ancillary workers at that time smoked - possibly still do, I wouldn't know - it was common practice to smoke in the van between pick-ups. I always used to smoke roll-ups; I've written before about the ritual and paraphernalia of the rolly that I enjoyed almost as much as the actual smoking. I had a cheap refillable lighter in those days in the Catalan colours, a souvenir of my work-camp experience in the Pyrenees, and a tobacco tin with Fat Freddy and his cat painted on the lid. Anyway, I balanced the tin on top of my coffee cup lid, which was held between my legs so that I didn't drop it, but it left my fingers free to roll the fag. When suddenly, Luis hit the brakes, I was thrown forwards, my legs came together, the lid popped off the coffee, my tobacco tin fell onto the floor of the van and scalding hot coffee poured onto my crutch and thighs. Fuck me that hurt, I mean REALLY hurt. Luis was not very sympathetic, we carried on and for most of the morning my scalded thighs were made worse by chafing of damp jeans. Not a good day.

My stoicism was rewarded though, as very soon after that incident, I was asked to work for three days at the Margaret Pyke Family Planning Clinic, which had been one of our pick-ups on the van. It was located underneath the Hospital for Women and was just off Soho Square. The most popular gynaecologist there was the guy who’s alter ego was Hank Wangford - Country ‘n’ Western star. It was June, I was 21 years old, very nearly 22 and my life was soon to be turned upside down.

I was asked to do some filing. There were wire baskets full of files from patients that needed to be re-filed. Oh well, beats humping bags of hospital laundry into the back of a van. Needless to say, the place was full of women - and I'm sure you know the kind: the kind that like working in a Family Planning Clinic. Their idea of a joke was to 'tease' any blokes that came in for free johnnies: "OK son, drop your trousers and we'll measure you up straight away" was their idea of putting a lad at his ease. You'd think they didn't want men to take any responsibility for birth control at all.

Anyway, I was diligently filing away when suddenly all noise faded into the background, the light in the clinic seemed to gain in intensity, time slowed down...if I'd looked up to the top of the filing cabinets, no doubt I'd have spotted Cupid chuckling away merrily to himself safe in the knowledge that another of his arrows had sped home speedily and true.

Just to back up a tiny bit here, if you've been following my posts over the years, you'll know that I’d had a few dalliances with a variety of foreign girls during my year of travels but the first true love of my life had faded away and none of the others were the ‘real thing’. I kept locking gazes with lovelies on the Tube and my pheromone detection and transmitting equipment seemed to be in constant overdrive. What I'm saying is that I was a total liability to myself and any female person to come within my soft, steely gaze.

Xena didn't stand a chance.

She was the permanent filing clerk and I, as the temp, was her helper. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I ask you: What chance did either of us stand? We were both doing the filing, the filing stacks were those movable filing stacks that we all know and loathe...except I didn't loathe them at all. It meant that all day long we were squeezing past each other, smiling, brushing up, breathing in…

Xena was petite, 5' 1" I was to find out, which makes my 5' 7" look (reasonably) masterful. She had longer than shoulder length wavy dark hair, greeny-brown eyes, a Mediterranean look and complexion but a general purpose London accent. She had the Mediterranean figure to go with the looks, and being short, she often had to use the little kick stool and stretch on tip-toes to put files away on the top rows. Boy oh boy...

So, it was a Monday, it was June, London was warm, Soho Square was full of people eating their lunches ("I believe that it's called Al Fresco" don't lie, you know, it's called Al Fresco because you're a middle-class Southern arse) and sunbathing in that typically English way, i.e. shirt off for men, skirt rolled up to mid-thigh if you're a woman.

That summer, I was working my way steadily through Joyce's 'Ulysses' - I was so young and full of myself that I didn't care or realise how much of a tosser this made me look. I was probably wearing a Glastonbury tee-shirt proclaiming the top bands to be something like Peter Gabriel and the Pogues.

Anyway, we settled down to a routine, Xena and I: first we'd do the filing, then we would sit in the little reception area and pack pills. I think Microgynon (sp?) was the most popular in those days. They would come in their blister packs in a box, and there would be little cardboard sleeves separate. We'd sit companionably side by side packing them and chatting.

Here's a tip for finding a life-mate, if you can meet in an environment where sex is the business of the day - though not in a bad way - then the ice isn't just broken, it's neatly carved into interesting little shapes, floating and clinking merrily in a double strength Gin & Tonic.

I was making a good impression on this impressionable though independent girl, I could tell. I'd been regaling her with my 'travels with a backpack' stories and she'd been telling me a little about her family. This is one of the fine things about London and about multi-culturalism. I don't want to get onto a soap box or anything, but Xena's parents both moved to London as economic migrants, her mother was a nurse from Ireland and her father was from Turkish Cyprus. For myself, my great-grandparents had escaped the antisemitic pogroms in Russia and Lithuania at the end of the 19th Century. Between us we carried genes from a pretty damn wide gene pool and we could have - if we had so wished - probably started a third world war. As it happened, that was the furthest thing from our minds.

On the Tuesday, I told her that I was a poet. Now, this was true in the very widest sense of the word: occasionally, I set words down on paper which conformed to rhyming or metering not usually found in prose. Bad poetry has two major sources: greetings cards and love-sick young men. Xena asked me for a poem and so, during lunchtime on the second day I had known her, I started penning a poem. It was...well now, how can I put it? Catchy? Not sure. It was longer than I'd planned, 7 little four-line verses, rhyming, using Xena's name [her real name that is] as the key rhyme running through the epic. The final verse was (if I can remember it correctly):

"So don't forget my name now,
And smile your whole life through,
And when I'm rich and famous,
I'll come back and marry you!"

Well. Surprising? It kind of surprised me too. I gave it to her as we parted at Oxford Street tube station.

The next day I found out would be my last on this assignment, so with mixed emotions we went through the routine of the day and this time, as we parted, she passed me a piece of paper. With tears welling in my eyes I fought my way down to the Northern Line, North-bound platform, dashed onto a train, found a seat (a miracle in itself) and unfolded the piece of paper to read (actual name changed to protect the oh-so innocent):

"To Che Grimsdale words from the boss,
To send you on your way,
A nicer lad I've never had,
To keep the files at bay,
Oh temps they come and temps they go,
And some I don't like much,
But really I would be quite pleased,
If we could keep in touch.
Boom boom"

I'm not sure how many times I read that during the 30 minute or so journey home as my memory is all a buzzing blur from that time. But if I could bottle that feeling...

God knows where I was sent the next day or so, but the following week, I was asked to go back to the clinic. Oh joy. I didn't have Xena's address or phone number - don't forget, this is 1985 and mobile phones didn't exist. I knew she lived in a bedsit somewhere in Cricklewood but that was all. Now I'd have the chance to ask her out properly...

Oh black day.

I turned up for work like an eager young puppy to be told that Xena had left.

Oh woe is me!

That would have been the thought running through my mind at the moment I discovered that Xena had left.

It would have, but the horrendous cocktail of hormones coursing through my young body had, semi-mercifully, given me a chemical lobotomy. Although it was London in late June and the sun was, apparently beating down relentlessly through the smog, everything in front of my eyes had a grey cast and I was feeling chilly.

I set to the task of filing away the medical records with about as much enthusiasm as I might have had for sorting out a rugby teams dirty kit before hand-washing and ironing it all. Last week, it had seemed as if I could have filed happily for the rest of my life, now, I couldn't even raise a smile when I came across the file for Violet Gumbs. The day dragged on interminably; lunch came and went - I found a pub somewhere off Soho Square and had a pint or two while re-reading the same paragraph of Ulysses about 30 times with as little understanding the 30th time as the first.

In the afternoon, the filing finished for now, I went upstairs to the office where Antonia worked. I'd spent a day a couple of months before helping her out in the office on a previous Catch 22 assignment. She was a pretty, cheerful girl; hair in a checker-board of tight, close plaits, glasses perched on the end of her nose and deep magenta lipstick contrasting with her almost velvet-black complexion. She had liked Xena too, and knew from the clinic gossip mill what the situation was. There was a spare chair in the office and I slumped there while Antonia made me a cup of tea and tried to cheer me up.

"The worst thing is," I told her, "is that I haven't got her phone number or address." At which, she gave me a serious look over her glasses before turning away to a filing cabinet, pulling out a file and taking it to her desk. She opened it up, copied something out, put the file away and came over to me.

"Look, if you ever tell where you got this, I'll be in real trouble, OK?" and she passed me a piece of paper with an address on it. "I haven't got a phone number, just her address."

I grasped her hands and kissed her on the cheek, "Don't worry, I won't tell, and...thanks. Really - thanks." Her smile must have at least part-way reflected my own as light began to seep back into my life.

Right. What to do? What to do?

I know: it's my birthday coming up, only a few more days left of being 21 - my folks are going to be away, and I've a party planned, just a few friends. I'll invite her along. So I posted her an invitation and got a card back saying she was sorry but she couldn’t make it - she could see me the following weekend and would phone me on the Saturday. That was the day (July 7th 1985) that Boris Becker became the youngest ever (and first unseeded player) to win the Wimbledon Men's title. I can remember watching the match, I remember being in a pit of misery as I waited for the phone to ring and I can remember that it was the best match of tennis I have ever watched. What I am saying is that one part of my brain was enjoying the match at some level, but my body was miserable, with that 'pit of the stomach' misery that is the flip-side of being in love.

Eventually she rang and we arranged to meet up. I believe Beethoven wrote his 9th Symphony chorus just for me on the day. We set a time and a place: Highgate Tube station 7.30pm Friday. I was there at about quarter past three - just to be on the safe side. Not really, in fact, at 3.15, I was probably in the shower, scouring, rinsing, lathering, rinsing, re-lathering (just to be on the safe side), re-rinsing, towelling down, brushing teeth, gargling, shaving, checking the result in the mirror, spraying, combing, talc-ing, brushing down, cooling off, choosing clothes (clean clothes!), dressing, preening, combing hair again, pacing, going out for some fresh air, smoking, coming in, cleaning teeth again, changing tee-shirt...

At 7.30 I was waiting at the top of the escalator at Highgate Tube (one of the longest) and then she appeared.

There are times when the anticipation is better than the event, when ‘tis truly better to travel in hope than to arrive. This was NOT one of those times. Oh no, this time, anticipation was a drink at the bar and some nibbles compared to the six course, haut cuisine, silver-service banquet that was the event.

I was the host. I didn't live in Highgate, but the Flask, on top of Highgate Hill was one of our regular drinking holes during the 6th Form and remained a firm favourite - especially in summer as there were plenty of tables outside. Xena was wonderful, not what she said or did, but just being there...

She wore tight pale pink trousers and flat red pumps. She was wearing a loose white shirt over a simple tee-shirt and a little jacket. She had a style all her own. Goodness knows what we talked about, but the conversation never dried up. We walked around Highgate Village a bit, stopping to sit on a bench in Pond Square while the sun when down. Then we wandered back to the Flask.

She drank vodka and orange and swirled the ice around, sucking the orange slice and laughing. I drank pints of cloudy scrumpy - the speciality of the house, but not to get drunk, or rather, I wouldn't have been able to tell if I was drunk or not.

After closing time we went back to the Tube. We'd been holding hands as we walked along but we stopped just outside the entrance and she turned towards me and held me round the waist, looking up expectantly into my eyes, smiling and we kissed. I don't know how long for, but we were brought out of our reverie by a car going past which honked its horn as some lads 'wa-haay-ed' out of the windows. It was that sort of a kiss: it was complete in itself and timeless but held promise, like a taste of new red wine from the finest vintage, a promise of future wines, great wines yet to mature in the barrel and later in the bottle - picking up flavours and deepness, rounding out, filling up, gaining depth, maturity, deepness of colour, fine bouquet; changing each year, always a joy, always a surprise, always a return to something familiar, overlaid with new subtlety, new enjoyment.

I knew that this was special. That this was 'it'. Oh yes, no mistake, and I wouldn't lose her a second time, oh no. No way Jose, this time, it was for keeps.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 9:53, 13 replies)
oh thanks b3ta, just what I needed reminding of.
Dragging up yet another well repressed life event in front of total strangers (well you are).

Aged 15 I think, I played lacrosse -twas popular round our way. It mainly meant seeing more girls. And one of them was Claire. Claire was lovely. But a bit chunky. But most importantly, she had once spoken to me. Therefore, I was in love.

My plan was simple, phone her up, ask her to the cinema on Friday night.

After dialling about 40 times and hanging up before the last digit, it rang. My heartbeat somewhere in the mid 300's. My stomach acids eating through the lining and into my bowels. My nails bitten to stubs.

Someone pick up. "HelloisClairethereplease?" I stammer.

"Hold on." I do for ages. I can hear the background chatter - 'who is it mum? Dont know, some boy, a boy? who? i dont know pick it up!'

"Hi"

"Hi, its Coke"

nothing

"..from Lacrosse?"

"Oh yeah hi." Confused.

"Yeah hi. Erm aloadofusaregoingoutonfridaynighttothecinemaandIwonderedifyouwantedtocome"

I am so fucking SMOOTH.

"Erm, you want me to go with you?"

"erm, yeah"

"No, why do you think I would"

"Oh, I thought you'd like to."

"No, sorry, no."

"Are you sure?"

"yes!"

"really"

"yes!"

OK time to bring out the big guns.

Me: "Please."

Thats it. Thats the last bit i remember. I fucking said PLEASE. I actually begged her to go out with me. That millisecond has haunted me like forever. Fuck. Girls are stupid.

Later that week I cycled round and threw an egg at her house and pedalled away really fast. That showed her.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 1:04, 4 replies)
How the Gibbon got his stripes
I met my one true love just over 6 years ago. I was at a party when we were introduced. I was 17 and a little too young for her but on first impression she seemed to not mind and she certainly looked fantastic. She was lightly bronzed (Which I am a big fan of) and the thing that really struck me was her bubbly personality - but not too much to be like one of those fat, annoying types and certainly not plain or bland. We got on great and before long I knew she'd got me pretty drunk. When we parted that night I knew I'd want to see her again, and every day after that for the rest of my life. I truly believe in love at first sight.

Over the coming weeks, however, I was totally skint and going out with my mates to the pub to see her was almost impossible. She'd be there every night with other men and I was losing some prime opportunity to win her as my own. Luckily I chanced upon an incredibly cushy part-time job and so money rolled back in.

After about 6 weeks I went to the pub with my mates and got myself a pint - and there she was at the bar. She looked even better than the last time, absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that. I'd forgotten how sweet she could be, how warm she made me feel, and I just felt so confident when I was with her (confidence was a big issue for me before I met her). However, I'd noticed that a couple of other men had taken a liking to her, I wasn't sure if this was a problem but I decided I'd need to act fast and spent as much time with her as possible. I think we both knew that there was some sort of unique connection between us but I was still wary of the competition. Again we parted that night, and although I soooo wanted to take her home with me, it just didn't seem right.

My luck was in the day after however. I was in my local supermarket getting a few essentials when I happened to bump into her. After a little deliberation I paid for my goods and we went back to my place for some fun. I flung her cap off her head with one movement and pressed my lips against her lip. She felt so good on my lips, I just KNEW she was the one. It was over way too quickly though (time flies when you're having fun!) And by this point I was hooked. I loved her and wanted to be with her forever. Ever since then we've barely had a day apart.

Beer, I love you.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 10:55, 9 replies)
Will you still love me tomorrow?
If nothing else, this story will prove to you just exactly why drugs are bad, m’kay?

2005 was a very strange year. I’d moved back to the Metropolis of London, my heart having been well and truly broken, and had got myself a job in that most vaunted and worthwhile of careers, recruitment consultancy.

(“A Recruitment Consultant?” one potential squeeze once said to me, “That’s just one step above being an Estate Agent!” – but I digress.)

Not only was I a recruitment consultant, I was an IT recruitment consultant. The scum that floats on top of the scum, if you will. And this, dear friends, was the time that I met the oft-talked about but never fully introduced Mad Saffa.

She’d managed to wangle a job in the same company as I by virtue of the fact that she knew my boss. She’d arrived in the UK four weeks previously, and had a year’s work permit. And the author was pretty well instantly smitten.

The only problem with her was that she was a massive cokehead. And I, being desperate (once again) to ingratiate myself with the cool kids, ended up with a nearly crippling addiction to the white stuff, something of which I am not proud and, after some counselling and a good old fashioned does of friend based intervention, I am now completely clean.

But that’s not the crux of my story. The Mad Saffa had now departed from my life, leaving me with a heart that was not only broken but now shattered in to a thousand lonely pieces, yet I was still shovelling drugs in to my face like there was no tomorrow. And that lead me to a windowsill in a side street off of Fleet Street at 11pm on a Thursday night with three other similar idiots, one of whom happened to be yet another girl that I was trying to charm the pants off.

I leaned over and breathed in sharply, taking the drug deep in to my nose. And then, seconds later, there was a rumbling deep in my bowels that indicated something was about to happen, and it wouldn’t be an innocent little fart. I attempted the ‘tester’, and tried to see if I could relieve some pressure without shitting myself.

I leaned against the wall, surreptitiously raised a leg (but the chances of anyone seeing me while the hoarded around the little bag of white powder like a pack of vultures were minimal anyway), and attempted a little release of gas.

What I actually released, however, was a small piece of poo.

Oh, if you’ll forgive the pun. shit. What to do? What to do?

There was only one thing for it. Find an alleyway, ditch the pants, get back to it. That sounds like a plan!

“Oh, guys!”

Sniff “Yeah?” Sniff.

“I’m just off to er... Well, I’ll be back in a minute, OK?”

Sniff “OK.” Sniff.
I waddled away, hoping against all hope that my precious cargo wouldn’t make a bid for freedom via my legs. I found an alleyway, pulled off my trousers and carefully, oh so carefully, removed my boxers. I thought it best, at that point, to use them to give myself a quick wipe to avoid staining.

Just as I pressed the fabric of boxer to the bare crack of my arse, the girl who I was trying to impress walked around the corner.

We froze in a grotesque tableau – her, mouth agog, staring at me. Me, naked from the waist down (save for a pair of socks), a balled up pair of boxer shorts stuffed up my bum, looking for all the world like I’d been caught with my knickers down. Which, of course, I had been.

“Er...” I muttered, flushing beetroot “I, er, um, had a small, um, accident. I’ll be back in a mo.”

She turned tail and fled. I did my best to clean up, dropped the boxers in a bin (something which I remain excruciatingly embarrassed about) and made my way back.

To her credit, she had told no-one. And, soon after, the incident was forgotten. As we walked back to the tube at the end of the evening, I walked with her, her arm in the crook of mine, and we looked upon London’s nocturnal beauty. We stopped. We faced each other. I looked in to her eyes and said:

“How about dinner next week?”

And she replied:

“Do you promise not to shit yourself?”

We were doomed from the start.
(, Mon 1 Sep 2008, 10:57, 15 replies)
My new girlfriend
After we first got together she admitted to me that she had anorexia.

These days, it's not going so well.

I'm starting to see less and less of her.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 15:38, 6 replies)
a lot of women seem to think
that everyone who's into jazz singing must be gay (at least anyone under 800 years old).

A lot of women seem to think that everyone who's into water-skiing must be a rich wanker.

A lot of women seem to think that everyone who's into Dungeons & Dragons must be a pasty-faced nerd.

So if you're into all three, as I am, you can have a very hard time meeting women.

Anyway, I'm happy to say that I've finally met a woman who doesn't make inaccurate assumptions about me based on stereotypes. In fact she says she's also into scat, watersports and role-playing! She seems to be really into D&D - she says she has a dungeon set up in her basement.

I'm really looking forward to going over to meet her gaming group tonight.
(, Sat 30 Aug 2008, 11:25, 6 replies)
The multiverse of Spimf
Mrs Spimf and I will have been together for 20 years at precisely 11.51 on Dec 24 2008. I am a huge fan of 'Back to the Future' so this anal level of precision works for me, that and the fact I am a hopeless romantic and do very much believe in the power of love.

It will also be our third wedding anniversary and exactly 4 years since I proposed. The proposal story is far more b3ta friendly, I shall make a point of ahem… proposing that as a future QOTW – “my proposal to the future Mrs. Spimf involved concealed kittens and industrial fireworks - how did you, or would propose to your beloved?”

Anyway…

!@£$%^&*()))_¡€#¢∞§¶•ªº:”|…æ≤≥÷¡€#¢∞§¶•ªº–≠⁄™‹›fifl‡°·’—»ÆÚ¿˘¯

Sorry I find wavy lines a bit dull, anyway... Christmas Eve, 1988 there’s the fresh faced 19-year-old Spimf not really in the mood to go out. I was at my gran's with my mum and sister. It was a cold wet miserable night in Glasgow. My wee Welsh gran always had the gas fire on a little bit too high. The combination of the moist thick heat and soft hissing noise from a gas fire has always made me feel safe, secure and a bit sleepy, so I was up for a quiet night in. After all Santa was coming that night and there would be presents there in the morning (I have always loved Christmas). But still I was an adult now and my best mate Mark was not ready to let me forget this. After calling to assure me our usual haunt would be “hoachin with fanny” (we were No.s 3 & 4 on our little laminated VIP passes – oh yes we were very much the young blades). I was also assured that if I didn’t go out that night I was a ”definite bender” so reluctantly I agreed to get ready. Some high waisted, stonewash jeans, ridiculous gelled 80’s hair and a liberal dousing of Kouros and there I was – chick kryptonite. Did I mention the rather expensive handmade cowboy boots? Aside from now being deeply embarrassing they are also highly significant.

Finally the taxi announced it’s arrival with a few impatient pumps on the horn. I kissed my mum, sister and wee welsh Gran goodnight, promised to be back in time for Christmas dinner, and set off into the drizzle (worrying about my extravagantly gelled hair). Walking down the pathway to the taxi I still felt distinctly unenthused about going out that night. Then suddenly, the heel of my stupid handmade cowboy boot struck a wet leaf on the pavement. Everything immediately expanded to Matrix bullet time. As I was doing my slo-mo flailing goosestep I remember very clearly thinking “right if I go arse over tit and get all wet and manky – fuck it, I’m staying in” Amazingly I regained my footing and my composure. Space-time relativity was restored and quite possibly somewhere in the future my son faded back into view in the picture next to my bed.

So there we are in the club, Joe Paparazzo’s in Glasgow, not our usual haunt; Tin Pan Alley in Mitchell Lane – no! A deviation was made from the norm that fateful night, (big queue outside Tin Pan Alley, fuck that).

So new horizons, fresh prey: there I was scanning ‘Joe Paps’ (a converted porn cinema apparently) suddenly I chanced upon the most lustrous mane of long tumbling dark hair.

And there she was, slender, petite wearing a lacy black dress (80’s remember) and high spiky heels highlighting a finely turned ankle, and cracking legs. Suddenly she spun round, tossing her beautiful hair over her shoulder (things might have gone a bit slo-mo again here). She looked directly at me, as if somehow she knew I was there. I later found out her dumpy fat mate was on point and was saying, “Right, quick he's looking now”. (Men are innocent lambs before the connivances of women.)

Her eyes were dark, dangerous and utterly beguiling. After an all too brief glance she looked away disinterestedly but arched her back and extended one leg backwards slightly (apparently this made her bum look even more perfect - like I say innocent lambs). I was crestfallen. Cleary she was WAY out of my league. She looked a little older than me, clearly more sophisticated. But that did not stop me staring. Pathetically though, I was utterly unable to approach. But I could at least gawp. This went on for a while, a long while, then a friend of a friend who was with our group moved in for the kill. Ramie: an unsavory character. Ramie was dodgy: a car thief, conman and womaniser, but handsome and smooth with it. Bastard. I watched things slip away from me, the picture of my son fading by my future bedside.

Action was required. Immediate action. I strode directly over, all the while looking into those big brown eyes. I spun on my (Cuban) heel and turned to Ramie. “It’s your round” Ramie looked me up and down sneered, then turned to Mrs Spimf and said mockingly “he reckons its my round, what do you think?”

Mrs Spimf looked at him innocently, held out her glass and said sweetly “Fresh orange and lemonade please” (she was driving that night).

We talked. She was perfect. I looked at my watch to see when it would be Christmas – 9 minutes to go. At midnight we shared an awkward peck on the cheek. Shortly afterwards Mrs. Spimf looked deeply into my eyes and said...

“So did you have a nice Christmas”?

I kid her now that she was pouting and swooning at this point but to be honest she was more likely thinking “Christ! is this Muppet ever going to make a move?”

We kissed. All the future pictures were drawn.

Mrs Spimf doesn’t do B3ta so I can share this with you all. I’m already planning Christmas this year back home in Scotland. There will be a very large eternity ring involved.

She is still perfect.

!
(, Sat 30 Aug 2008, 21:51, 13 replies)
In which Chickenlady loses her composure
I was staying with my cousins in Northampton and I had just split up with my boyfriend of eighteen months because he wanted to get engaged and I wanted to enjoy being at Uni.


My elder cousin, Joe, was taking me to a club where Paul, his brother would meet us with all their (male) mates.

I had prepared for the evening out by spending an hour in the bathroom, putting on my shortest tight black skirt, highest black patent heels and lowest cut purple blouse. All in all I looked like the evil love child of Prince and Brian May (all that curly dark hair, you know). The make up had been duly applied with various building implements and dangly earrings framed my face much in the same way that traffic lights adorn an A road.

Before hitting the club we visited a couple of pubs where I kept up my classy appearance by downing pints of cider and laughing raucously at rude jokes…rude jokes that I had just told.

All was going swimmingly, my cousin and I were sharing old family stories and reconnecting over our pints. Finally the time had come to hit the club and find Paul. Joe had warned me that Paul had an entire gang of mates, a few of whom were shady characters. Paul himself divided his time between cleaning windows, drinking pints and smoking joints - he truly lived the life of Riley and his lazy mate.

I was prepared - I had been drinking cider, the drink of champions, tramps and pissheads. I could take on the world and tell them where their apostrophe should go - politely, of course.

Now, I should perhaps add here that I have always had a habit of making up words for my own entertainment... Onanistic neologism if you will.

Anyway, we arrive at the dark and slightly sweaty club and to be honest it was a bit of a disappointment. I was expecting neon and chrome, the approximation of the last debauched days of Rome wrought from early 90s tat and a bit of vacuum formed plastic. Instead the club was strip lighting and formica and a faithful recreation of the last staid days of Bognor Regis in a church hall on a wet Sunday evening in January.

Joe got me another pint of cider, this time served up in a plastic glass which I balanced on my knee while I sat watching the high fashion outfits of a decade previous shake, jump and wobble about on the parquet floor.

Paul showed up with his crowd of mates all of whom seemed to be pleased to see us - I was so glad we'd sat by the bar.

During the next hour or so a few more pints were downed, a teetering trip to the toilets was undertaken, but all in all it was uneventful…..until the music began to change as chucking out time approached.



Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a young man.

His trousers were the most conspicuous detail about him; having grown up watching Ben Elton do stand up in what can only be described as Chernobyl trousers, I honestly thought they were a BBC wardrobe creation and not available for general public purchase.

I was wrong.

Aside from his striking trousers he was dressed normally - white shirt, goping* shoes, the usual clubbing attire for many young men at the time.

His face however let him down badly, or rather his doctor or chemist had. His nickname was Pepperoni - for two reasons as it turned out, but the main one being that his face closely resembled a pepperoni pizza so bad was his acne.

Pepperoni was one of Paul's close mates and he asked me to dance.

In the time honoured tradition of my family I accepted - always accept a dance, regardless of what you may think of the person, asking for a dance requires courage and refusal will cause the asker to lose face with his mates. By all means if you dislike the person then only dance the once with them and don't accept the offer of a drink, but never turn down a dance.

So I stood ready, arms raised and prepared to hang around Pepperoni's pustule ridden neck, a fixed rictus grin pasted upon my heavily made up face. No doubt I closely resembled a zombie at this point, however, it did nothing to dampen his ardour, if anything it enflamed it. He grasped me tightly around the waist and began to gyrate and grind into my hips, while snuggling his pimply face into my neck and breasts - did I mention he was a good few inches shorter than me?

I attempted just like the poor black pussy cat who has her back painted with white emulsion to struggle away from my very own Pepé Le Pew but my efforts were in vain as it just made him gather me in towards him with greater relish.

All the while the droning tones of 'Three Times A Lady' continued in the background and I silently cursed each and every member of the Commodores to a long and painful bum disease.

The seconds seemed to turn into hours and then I noticed It.

The real reason he was called Pepperoni.

Not only did he suffer with appalling acne but he also had the unfortunate tendency to wear baggy trousers in which his own private pepperoni could stretch and relax unencumbered by lycra or a swift knee from me.

My struggling increased…as did he.


You know the old joke about starting a fire with two Boy Scouts?

I had been a Girl Guide.


Finally the song finished, it was time to go home and he was walking with us. "Would you like to go out with me?" he asked in almost reverential tones.

The force of six pints of cider, being squeezed and 'rubbed' against all built up in me…..Two things happened.


Firstly I blurted out the words that had been going around in my head ever since he grasped me to his pyretic gonads,

"But you have burning swonicles!"

To which he backed away slightly from the strange young woman who stood in front of him. This was a Good Thing because at that moment my stomach decided to add in its own comment on the evening's romantic shenanigans….

PPARRRPPPPP!!!

And at that moment I became Cinderella at midnight - I ran for the door and made it home long before my cousins and without one shoe.


I never liked that pair anyway.








*Not a particular style of shoe, rather a descriptive term for anything revolting or unpleasant, i.e. It's pissing down, this weather is bloody goping. Or, Have you tried this fish pie? It's goping.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 10:59, 11 replies)
I chatted up Sarah Jessica Parker once.
I complimented her on her acting and her success with Sex And The City and offered to take her out.

She accepted!

Very much chuffed, I took her to dinner, then out to a nearby pub for a drink before we headed back to my place.

Don't believe me? Here's photographic proof!



(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 17:55, 14 replies)
My first time…in more ways than one…

I was just 29 years old, and comfortable not only with my social status and my circle of friends, but with my life in general. I was a fully paid up member of the ‘Zek From DS9 Appreciation society’, and my weekend pursuit of camping outside BBC headquarters as part of my ‘Bring Back Knight Rider’ campaign was a great way to keep myself busy.

I was happy.

However, one fateful day my mother had decided it was about time I went out, found myself a lovely girlfriend and moved forward with my life.

(I’m sure that’s what she meant, but what she actually said was: “I’m kicking you out of the house and using your room as a massage parlour for sailors. You’ve got until the end of the week to get out, you useless fuckstain!”)

Sensing the emotional, yet assertive twang in my mother’s voice as she was bravely choosing to cut the apron strings and set me free, I decided that the time was indeed right to find myself a worthy mate.

The very next Saturday evening I decided to venture out in the rain and drizzle towards the direction of the local discotheque. The place was imaginatively called ‘The Big Ole Pig Pen’

I find that preparation is always the key in matters such as this…and ever eager to fit in, my outfit was a masterpiece of research into the latest trends of style-conscious go-getters like myself. I had checked both the internet and my mum’s magazines for guidance and couldn’t be happier with the result.

I cunningly disguised my morbid obesity by dressing head-to-toe in black with vertical stripes (as it’s supposed to be ‘slimming’). Unfortunately, I had to paint the stripes on myself, and the only colour I could find in the garage was ‘Day-Glo pink’, but I was confident the finished article set off my balaclava and ski gloves quite nicely.

As I approached ‘The Big Ole Pig Pen’, the burly gentleman on the door with a strange glint in his eye insisted that the only way he would let a ‘runting scrote’ like me into his club was if I paid an extra £50…so I obliged and he bid me good day with a playful jabbing punch to the throat.

I had not limped more than 10 yards into the murky darkness of the club before I was knee deep in dry ice, cigarette butts, blood, vomit and spandex. Amongst the rampant flesh-fest that was on display before my eyes, I was immediately distracted by an image of perfection…

She was a vision, a glistening angel in posture correcting trainers, dripping with the faux glamour that only diamante, weapons grade fake tan and bullet-belts could provide. Her gold tooth sparkled like a glitterball, standing out because it was the only tooth of the top row. Her hair was short and blonde on one side, yet long and ginger on the other, which gave her an indecisive, vulnerable look. The way the lipstick mark was enticingly smudged on her bottom tooth made me literally tingle with anticipation.

I ached to touch the huge wart on her forehead that seemed to have a separate wart of its own, and longed to nibble at the chunky, vein packed thighs, that were attached to a skirt so short that even from across the room I could make out some French deserters straggling down from her undergrowth.

Although she was obviously way out of my league in the class department, I was determined to succeed. Like Spock in ‘Wrath of Khan’, when he got all that flaky skin and died with radiation burns only to be reborn again, I was not about to give up…on my destiny.

From the safety of a dark corner (next to a copulating couple that I’m sure didn’t mind that I was sitting right next to them) I watched, endlessly spellbound as she gyrated, swayed and foamed exotically on the dancefloor (in what I thought was a tantalising ‘mating ritual’, but I later discovered it was an epileptic episode from the strobe lighting).

After a few drinks I finally plucked up the courage to make ‘First Contact’…I tentatively approached her on the dancefloor, and as I mentally patted myself on the back for not stumbling over my own feet, I then proceeded to stumble over my own feet…which unfortunately resulted in me chucking my Pernod and Cherryade all down her white spangled boob-tube.

‘You fackin’ cunt!’ she fumed violently but huskily, in a cumly sort of way…

I prayed she wouldn’t notice my tongue darting out to lap up the droplets of spit she sprayed over me with every delicious word as she screamed again: ‘You better buy me anuvver drink or I’ll rip off your head and shit down your neck’

Transfixed by her charm I wrenched off my balaclava and dazzled her with my long rehearsed and finally mastered ‘sophisticated’ expression. (This was achieved by using my hands to stretch my mouth into my neck and then squinting really hard at her lazy eye).

The ice was now well and truly broken, I decided to hopefully drive her wild with a chat-up line that not only carefully detailed my own knowledge and prowess, but must surely make her powerless to my charm.

“Let me guess, fair maiden, you must be at least a WoW level 59…Do you speak Klingon?” I stuttered in my best ‘Roger Moore’ accent

“Why don’t you just fack off, you lump o’ maggot shit” she retorted with evermore chic finesse.

“Touché” I said. Trying to control my excitement and burning desire as I couldn’t believe the incredible reality that here I was…talking to a real girl...in fact, not just a girl…but a ‘woman’

Amongst the gentile banter I decided that I must take the leap of faith….I took a deep breath, tightly clutched the 17 inch Chewbacca model I was using as a lucky mascot, and quietly whispered:

“Erm…if it’s not too much trouble…erm…would you…. erm…. go out….. with….”

...

It was at this point that she checked her ‘Ninja Turtles’ watch and eloquently exclaimed: “Oh fack me, it’s bleedin’ 2 o’ clock! If I don’t get some hot cock action soon, I’ll have to shag the tramps by the bus stop...again…..so I guess you’ll have to do.”

Thusly, and with delicate grace, she grabbed me and thrust her hand down my grundies, seizing a vice-like hold of my ‘Commander Riker’ and shouted “Hang on spack-cake, it’s going to be a bumpy ride” as her hand forcefully sped up and down my throbbing midget-gem like a runaway jackhammer on overload.

Unfortunately, this rapid push-pull movement was affecting my whole body, not just ‘Little Mr Winkie’, and before I even had time to fire off my 'juicy tractor beam’, I spewed a multi-coloured swapshop of purest vomjuice into her face.

“Aww Fackin’ ‘ell!” she shrieked, and began using one hand to wipe herself down as she carried on vigorously pummelling my purple pork-pole with the other. I felt I was being flung around like a gurning rag doll until the gloopy payload-of-passion paste copiously erupted from my choc-full cheese churns.

Then, without a word, she turned and waddled off into the night with a bottle of Malibu under each armpit and a puddle of sweat formed above the top of her G-string.

I never saw her again…never even knew her name.

In the spirit of ‘better to have loved and lost’ and all that, my only regret is that we never kissed…simply because I had spent so long practising my kissing technique on my 'Jean-Luc Picard' action figure. Perhaps my lack of sensitivity towards her was why she never returned…



But the story doesn’t end there…for I lingered at the disco, simply revelling in the night’s experience…never wanting it to end…I thought everybody had long gone and I was on my way out...when I heard a quiet voice behind me…

It said: “Will you go out with me?

I turned round on my heels, but the only person I could see was Horace, the 7ft tall, half-human, half-rhino doorman. Before I could even say ‘Were you talking to me?’ he’d dragged me by my hair into the coat room and showed me the TRUE meaning of love…twice in fact…and it wasn't particularly tender the first time either.

Anyhoo, we’ve been together 6 months now...and although my chutney-cupboard has sagged a bit…I have never been happier.


Don't you just love a romantic ending…?
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 15:59, 15 replies)
We met on a beach
It was one of those jaw dropping moments that you don't think will happen in real life.

She was there with her family on holiday, I was feeling a bit down in the dumps after losing my job but i'd already booked the holiday so I was damned well going to enjoy it.

She was just paddling in the shallows when I saw her. She had this wonderful innocence in her eyes.

I knew of course, that she was well out of my league so I just enjoyed the moment as I lay in the sun.

But then, as I walked back to my apartment later a miracle occured. It turns out they were staying just a couple of apartments over from mine. After a bit of clandestine stalking errrr observation, I realised that her bedroom window was overlooked by mine.

That night as I enjoyed my chicken risotto I noticed her parents leaving the apartment with some friends. But she wasn't with them.

Sensing my chance, I climbed in through her bedroom window and stole her. But in the end I had to kill her as the publicity got a bit too much.

I'm sorry, I know it's wrong. I hope it hasn't bindun either
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 10:14, 7 replies)
Fate, Tokyo-style
WARNING: Contains mild peril, adult themes and a happy ending.

What follows is a series of unlikely events that happened to me a few years ago. In the summer of 2005, I was still a fresh-faced IT graduate working for my first investment bank. An opportunity arose for one person in the combined global teams to visit Tokyo for a six-month secondment to work on a large project.

After a short battle of wits with my colleagues in the USA and Germany, I was selected from a pool of ten or so likely candidates. The stage was set for half a year in crazy Tokyo.

A few weeks before I was due to fly out to Japan, another graduate from the New York team entered into the fray. She only wanted a piece of the project, which meant there was now awkward inter-office politics to deal with. My spineless manager ended up conceding three months so she could also spend some time in Japan. Three months in an exotic country was still better than nothing so I agreed to continue with my flight as planned.

July arrived all too soon. On the day of departure, my mind was buzzing with nervous excitement. I’d had a fantastic summer of festivals spending quality time with my friends and family. Bouncing up the steps into the regal surroundings of Virgin Atlantic’s ‘Upper Class’ cabin (corporate expenses are excellent), I slinked into the seat, complimentary champagne cocktail in hand. I stuck out like a sore thumb. All the other passengers in my section were aging businessmen in grey suits. My incongruous appearance and my buoyant mood seemed to catch the attention of a pretty cabin crew girl. She kept brushing past my arm and making none-too-subtle eye contact, so I threw caution to the wind by taking every opportunity to flirt outrageously with her. I think the bubbly helped too. A few hours later, it paid off. The lights went out for the night portion of the flight and she made good on her promise that if I needed “anything at all” she would “make my flight more comfortable”, courtesy of an extended tour of the Upper Class toilets. ‘Virgin’ Atlantic my arse…

Upon landing at Narita, properly worn out after the best flight I will ever take [cough], I felt like the whole world was at my feet. My confidence levels were unassailably high as I checked in to the luxurious hotel my company had provided. I switched on the TV in time to watch London win the Olympic bid and abandoned all hope of getting any sleep. Instead, a night out to celebrate my ‘spawny-git’ luck seemed more appropriate.

The next morning, I dragged my jetlagged, hung-over carcass into the office and managed to stumble through breakfast, meet-and-greets and a full day in the office. I’d barely slept for 48 hours which combined with +8 hours time difference meant I was essentially sleep-walking for most of the day. My moment of clarity arrived at about half past five in the afternoon as I was checking the day’s news. A story was breaking in the UK that morning about a series of power problems on the London Underground. Apparently, several transformers had exploded…. simultaneously… on different stations and lines… during rush hour.

Oh fuck… please no....

One look at the map of the explosions confirmed what was glaringly obvious to everyone except the BBC. It was a co-ordinated attack on London’s transport network. My mood changed quickly, from one of blind shock to total relief. Two of the stations were on my normal route into the London office at about the same time that I usually went to work. Had I not been in Tokyo, there was a strong chance I would have been directly involved in the Liverpool Street or Aldgate blasts. As the enormity of the events was being absorbed, my feelings of relief drained away as concern mounted for my friends in London.

The Tokyo office was full of British ex-pats who crowded around the TV screens. The phone lines were all dead in London so it was impossible to confirm if our colleagues, friends and families back home were okay. We went downstairs to the bar and watched events unfold. My body and brain were too fatigued to adequately reconcile what was happening, and so my spiral of decline began.

I recall very little of that evening as I ended up getting horribly pissed. The next week or so was much the same as the isolation from anything familiar and comforting began to take hold. I spent the daytime ambling through the working day and the evenings drinking, puking or engaging in meaningless sex with any trollop who would have me. Sometimes all three at once. As fun as that may sound, it was as close as I’ve been to a living hell. I lost all respect for myself and was seriously considering going home.

Then my brother arrived for a ten-day visit. He and an old school friend had both been made redundant so they’d decided to capitalise on my free accommodation in Japan and take a cheap holiday. I barely saw them for the first few days as they went out every night, but it was the boost I desperately needed. Just seeing familiar faces again restored my composure, so I started the working week with a renewed desire to catch up with my lagging project work.

About halfway through the week, I arrived back in my flat after work to find my brother, his friend and two Japanese girls sitting in my living room sipping green tea. I learned that my brother had managed to seduce one of these girls the previous night and had spent the night at her place, frolicking as young people on holiday are wont to do. He takes after his older brother … The other girl was a friend of my brother’s conquest.

Keiko (for that was not her name, but it will do) also spent the night at this girl’s flat as all the trains had finished for the night, then she’d tagged along with the others the following morning. She was quiet, but she seemed to enjoy making conversation with me while the other three chatted amongst themselves. There was *something* about Keiko that I found quite bewitching…

That same day at work, I’d been given a new mobile phone, but my phone book was empty. I asked if I could take Keiko’s number as she seemed warm, friendly and, most importantly, she spoke good English (I couldn’t speak Japanese at all back then) so it seemed like a smart move. After a short while, the girls said their goodbyes and I sat and listened to my brother’s shameful boasting (as I said, he takes after me) while pondering my brief but jovial encounter with this mysterious and enchanting girl.

I couldn’t take my mind off Keiko. She was so unlike the other women I’d met so far in Japan, so delicate and feminine, adorable in every way. My usual tactic would have been to attempt a quick one-night stand but I didn’t want to tarnish her with a cheap fling. Unusually for me, I just couldn’t find the courage to call her. I was suffering a mental block that placed her tantalisingly out of my reach.

Friday came and my brother and his mate went home. I felt a little sad to see them go, but their visit had repaired my self-esteem so in the evening my work mates and I went out into Roppongi and we had a *massive* night out in town. I wobbled back into my apartment at 7am in the blazing sunshine of a summer Saturday morning and collapsed face-first asleep on my sofa. At around midday, I crawled the short distance to the kitchen, poured a glass of water and fell into my bed.

You know when you get woken up in an unusual way, sometimes things just don’t make sense? Well, the first sensation I remember was wondering why I had a wet face… don’t get any nasty ideas though. It turned out to be the glass of water I’d rested on the shelf behind my bed. The reason I was wet was because the contents of the glass were splashing to and fro. I sat bolt upright as it dawned on me what was happening…

A FUCKING EARTHQUAKE!

Dealing with a massive hangover is hard enough, but when the entire world around you is shaking like a shitting dog, it’s difficult to work out which movements are real and which are self-induced. I crab-walked across my room, braced myself in the door frame and watched plates and glasses tumble out of my cupboards. The ‘quake was terrifying and seemed to last ages, but eventually, the shaking subsided. I got dressed quickly, picked up my phone instinctively… and saw just one number. I pressed the ‘call’ button and waited for Keiko to pick up.

“Very big earthquake!” she squeaked at me down the phone. I stammered back my rubbish attempt at Japanese “Hai, sugoi eartho-quako!”. She giggled and my heart fluttered. We were excited and edgy having just experienced this awesome natural display of power, but talking to each other was providing a soothing effect for us both.

I asked where she was when the ‘quake happened and it happened to be in the local cinema not more than a ten minute walk from my apartment. I agreed to meet her for a coffee so we could recount our experiences, but I was secretly just pleased to be seeing her again. About nine minutes later I was opposite the coffee shop and I found Keiko sitting there, waiting for me. When she noticed me cautiously watching her from across the street, she smiled in a way I will never forget. It was a radiant, sunny smile that made me forget all about the earthquake. I knew then that I was smitten with her.

We spent the rest of the day just hanging out together. Later that evening she came round to my apartment and we watched DVDs together after I enjoyed a meal she cooked in my tiny little kitchen using the remainder of my unbroken crockery. Unusually for me, rather than trying it on, I walked her to the train station and watched wistfully as the carriages pulled away. It had been a long time since I’d felt such strong emotions for anybody and I was perversely enjoying that long-absent yawning in my stomach.

A few days later, Keiko and I met up again and went out in Tokyo for a proper dinner date. Afterwards we went out in town but by the time we wanted to go home, it started raining unbelievably hard, so we waited it out. The rain refused to stop –Tokyo typhoon season is like that— and again, all the trains had finished, so we made a dash for a taxi back to my apartment. We were both absolutely dripping wet, so I offered her a towel and said she could get changed into one of my shirts while she waited for her clothes to dry. Deep down I was hoping for more, but I still didn’t want to risk spoiling the magic we were generating together. After about five minutes of getting changed in my bedroom, she stepped out, still with wet hair (one of my biggest turn-ons) wearing just two items of clothing… my home town football top and, as I was to later discover, a pair of sexy silk panties. I was in heaven! After much kissing and cuddling, I asked her (in badly broken Japanese) if she wanted to spend the night together.

She looked at me with those beautiful brown eyes and softly whispered one word:

“hai”.

-----------------------------
EPILOGUE:

Keiko and I stayed together as an item for the remainder of my trip, but I had to go home in September. It was too much to bear for both of us, so Keiko ended up visiting me in London a month later. She then decided that she wanted to stay with me in the UK, so she moved here in early January 2006 and she’s been with me ever since. We got married in January 2007 and we’ll shortly be moving back to Tokyo so I can repay her commitment to me with my own tour of duty.

So there you have it. A series of seemingly unconnected events, not unlike the movie Magnolia, which culminated with me meeting my future wife.

And the best part? It’s all true.
(, Tue 2 Sep 2008, 16:45, 11 replies)
Break up...
...not getting together, but breaking up.

She came over to me when I got in from work and said, "we need to talk about our future..."

I replied, "yeah, it's going to be fucking excellent. Flying cars, phones implanted in our heads, TV on demand...."

Single now.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 13:29, 6 replies)
Im thinking of selling the rights to Disney
At a party

flatmate: Hi
girl: Hi
G: so uh, whereabouts do you live?
FM: xxx avenue
G: xxx avenue!! I have slept with five people on that street!
FM: wanna make it a half dozen?
G: sure!
(, Thu 28 Aug 2008, 21:56, 1 reply)
milord tulip
and I met completely randomly. For some reason this makes people think we met online, but we didn't, we met in real life and everything. It was in a pub about five years ago. He caught my eye over my best mate's shoulder, waited until she went to the bar and then pounced. We talked for three hours that night, swapped numbers, then met up two days later and spent the whole day together. I knew within about five minutes that I would marry him one day. Course I didn't tell him that until after he proposed about two years later, I'm not daft.

He is ace, and he thinks I'm the best girl in the world. The sight of his lovely bottom in his cricket whites makes me go weak at the knees, and no-one makes me laugh like he does. And no-one else has ever waited up for me till past midnight with champagne on ice and a special meal, just because. (that was the other day) We're best mates and he calls me his little buddy (amongst other things)

I can't wait to marry him. He's promised to wear his kilt and everything.

apologies for lack of funneh.

click I like this if you think I should wear pants-with-the-cross-of-St-Andrew-on underneath my wedding dress.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 10:30, 23 replies)
The lovely Mr Emperor Bob and I
met at a charity karaoke party thrown by some mutual friends.

I was hiding from some perv who gatecrashed, so got Mr Emperor Bob to stand in front of me, hiding me from perv's view. Later, he sang "7 Nation Army", bought me multiple gins, and invited me to a gig. A match made in heaven.

Strange as it may sound, from the moment I met him, I knew I wanted to kiss him. 10 minutes after properly speaking to him (probably merrily praising his White Stripes performance), I knew that I was going to kiss him. And within a couple of dates with him (proper dates, not just kissing at the party), I knew that we had a really good chance of having a good relationship.

It's been over 3 years now, I moved in with him at Easter, and I've never been happier. This is the first ever proper relationship I've ever been in (4 months with a flute-playing geek at school doesn't count, and uni was made up of, ahem, shorter-term liaisons), and I have the happy feeling that it's going to be the last relationship I'll ever be in.



Click "I like this" if I just made you vomit a little bit.
(, Thu 28 Aug 2008, 23:16, 6 replies)
How did you get your current flame to go out with you?



... *ahem*...

*Whistles innocently*
.
.
.
(, Tue 2 Sep 2008, 14:36, 12 replies)
we met at the adoption agency
I said "do you come here orphan?"
(, Sat 30 Aug 2008, 14:25, 2 replies)
Tis a sad and sordid story that ends happily with lesbian lust!
I split up with my Ex some time before, not because we hated each other, but because I think I wanted it more than him. He was lovely, but alas not The One. You see, my Mother read my Tarot and told me, you are going to meet a guy, but he will not stay and then you will meet the one.

I turned to Gaydar Girls, a lovely sight of a site where lots of beautiful elegant ladies all ignored me or told me that they just wanted to be friends.

Then I had a message from out of the blue. "Sat here sulking, scanning profiles, thought you looked like the sort of person I would get on with so thought I would say hi."

Hmm I think, sulking, sounds like my kind of girl so I replied and said that I was still a bit heart sore being freshly single by a couple of months. Then ping, a new message arrives. "Being just out of a relationship then we are both in the same situation, maybe we could 'not settle down' together sometime?"

We ended up swapping messages for ages and in the end even Gaydar Girls got fed up with us and we turned to e-mail and then phone calls. I missed her first call, I was doing something private, being recently post op TS (Oh the shock, I am admitting that I am Transsexual and a lesbian all in one post! Trans and proud me...)I needed to catch up with my physio. She left me a profane and ear splitting message on my answer phone that had me in fits of giggles.
I phoned her back and we talked non stop for an hour, exhausted we wished each other good night.

Then I was attacked in work by a group of school kids in a trans-phobic attack. I mention this because it is important. I left the area rapidly for the house of a good friend, who lived an hour and a half away from who shall for now call the one. The time away was just what I needed, but my heart ached to be so close to the one and yet so far away, also my friend, although a wonderful artist was experimenting with house dust and spider webs and I have a dust allergy.

The one met me at the railway station and I saw her right away, long leather coat, dark glasses and all in black. Very Matrix... I got through the gates and we met each other for the first time, but no words passed between us...

Well they couldn't, you see the world had faded away and all that existed was our first kiss, it was one of the most beautiful moments in my life, even beating the moment I woke up as a girl for the first time. I was to stay with her for two days, but this turned into a week and I had missed my train home again. So she popped me in her car and drove me home so I could go back to work...

I made it through half a day before I could stand it no more, four years of trans-phobic abuse by the kids at work had left me feeling hunted and miserable. Nothing happened to the kids who assaulted me and I felt like a target waiting to be attacked again. I phoned The One and said please come and get me and she did. She drove me to my Doctor and my Doctor told me I was too ill to be in work due to stress and fear. I was already taking huge amounts of antidepressants to cope with the abuse in the school. I cried a lot.

The one is called Carol and she is beautiful, red hair, eyes to drown in and a smile that can bring me to tears of joy. I love her with all of my heart, she rescued me and helped me get off of the drugs I was taking for depression, she got me out of a town where I was so unhappy and even bullied. She made me realise that I am a lovely woman and I do not have to be ashamed of my past anymore. She helped me start again and then she...


Proposed to me.

Carol, with all of my heart, I love you. How could I say no to the woman who taught me to be free?

Length:- none at all, it's an inny now!
(, Sat 30 Aug 2008, 1:33, 8 replies)
Threesome anyone...?

The temptation to turn this into a full-on stinking stonking joke post was almost overpowering, but in the interest of ‘keeping it real’, I’ll tell it how it actually happened… for a change. Who cares about clicks anyway?

This was one of the only times I can (currently) remember being properly propositioned in ‘open play’ (I don’t count times when I was in the band…). Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite as glamorous, romantic or even erotic as I thought it would be.

A while ago, I was with a few friends getting arseholingly squiffy on a Saturday night in my local. It was late, and the smell of stale smoke, strong lager and weak bladders hung in the air like the antichrist of ‘Febreeze’…

I noticed a woman across the room doing her best impression of a ‘pouting diva’…or as good an impression as is possible to do when you’re shitfaced on Bacardi Breezers.

Our eyes met… (accidentally in my case) and straight away she approached me and sat down by my side.

“Hello” she chirped.

Oozing charm and radiating an almost heroic ‘studmuffin-ness’* I stuttered back:”Erm…hello”.

She then nodded her head in the direction of her giggling companion and fawned: “Me and my friend were just wondering if you would like to come back to my place for a…..’

At this point I watched her take something out of her purse and felt her press it into the palm of my hand. I looked down to see what 'it' was…

It was……a screw.

‘Awww’ I thought for a second…before the mongtoid hamster snoozing in my head finally understood what was going on, and the reality of the situation hit home like a breezeblock nailed to an Exorcet Missile…

‘Hang on a minute!’ I thought.

Being scrote-strokingly proud of my powers of intuition, three things immediately sprang to my attention, making me realise this was not the ‘dream come-on’ I had at first suspected.

1. I was married – and was wearing the ring and everything. She saw this, understood…and just didn’t care. This meant she was of highly questionable morals (and not just in the good way either.)

2. The women just weren’t my type. Neither of them. I mean, they were attractive enough, but they just didn’t ‘tazer me in the nad department’. Call me ‘more old fashioned than Joan of Arc’s panty liner’, but there’s always time for a modicum of class (even I have standards you know). Overly forward slappers just don’t make the cream rise to the surface of my milk bottle if you know what I mean.

3. I realised the only reason somebody would actually carry a screw in their purse would be either a) because they were being ever vigilant for any fiendish 'picture-hanging emergency', or b) it was a well used prop for a no doubt equally well used chat up line. I deduced from this that collectively, they probably would have had more 'dongs' and 'wangs' than a Chinese phonebook. Their flanges would have no doubt been so capacious that I may as well have had to reach my hand inside and tug off my own custard-coughing cucumber mid-session…should I accept their (admittedly generous) offer.

Looking for guidance, I glanced over to my mates, who were still reeling from the collective state of shock of witnessing that not only had I been propositioned (and they hadn’t), but it was also a potential threesome situation. CODE RED!

Their unanimous decision as to my course of action was swift, and they motioned towards me in the usual timeless, mature, gentlemanly way…

They each placed their left hand palms in their right arm elbow pits, before bending and raising said right arms…whilst shaking their right fists at me exclaiming “Phwoooar! – Get in there boy!” etc., en chorus with enthusiastic, yet sensitive overtones.

I looked back at my potential ‘conquest’…who by this point was eying me up and down as if she was mentally marking out the best cuts of meat for herself…and I replied:

“Erm…sorry…but no thank you” I muttered before gazing sheepishly back into my pint.

She got up despondently and wiggled back to her friend. I was then subjected to the kind of ritualistic, arse-tearing abuse from my mates that they seem to spend years researching before storing in stasis for occasions such as these.

It may go down in my life history as the one (or two) that got away…but at least it’s something for the wank-bank**…

And I’ll always have something interesting to tell my grandchildren whilst I sit there dribbling over my Werthers Originals and prune juice...



*ok, that bit was a lie

** besides, I’ve had threesomes before…but that’s something for another QotW

(, Wed 3 Sep 2008, 10:14, 19 replies)
Ok....
Back when I was 16, I was up at the Edinburgh festival. I'd met a few techie types whilst doing work experience, and ended up meeting most of the comedy circuit at the time. It was fucking great, going to every house party and being plied with all sorts of booze and narcotics. And then I met Mick.

He'd sat down next to me in a bar, and we had instantly clicked. You know how you just start talking to someone and everything else melts away? Well, tht was the two of us. Only one small slight issue- he was 38. But we were mates instantly, and that was all that mattered. We spent the next week glued together at every party.

At the end of our week together, I was trying to shake off a bloke who I'd snogged drunkenly earlier on and who was telling anyone who listened I was his girlfriend, and Mick was being persued by some blond thing who was adamant that he was the one for her. He'd tried to get her into a quiet corner to tell her about his (fictional) wife and three kids, but she pulled him into a toilet cubicle. After shouting for the bouncer, the two of us legged it.

We went to another bar until we were kicked out at 4am. I had a train home later that day, so we walked arm in arm around the city, just talking (still just mates here). After a few hours, he asked me if I fancied him.

"Fuck" thinks I, stupid 16 year old me has ballsed up this friendship. Because I had fallen for him so hard over the last week. I hadn't even thought I was capable of feeling this much about a single human being. And I was doing my damndest not to show it to this incredible man, because with a 22 year age gap we couldn't honestly be more than mates, right?

However, I make a point not to lie. "um, kinda" I saucily replied.

"Good. Then I guess we can be mates that fancy each other then"

(Bear with the flirting, neither of us are any bloody good at it. I still have no idea whatsoever if someone's interested in me)

We had a coffee. We walked down to the meadows and lay on the grass, and watched as the sun rose. And then we leaned towards each other and had the shyest, most gentle kiss ever.

From that day we have been inseperable. I was still at school- I had to deal with having a boyfriend older than some of the teachers, he had to deal with every one of his mates asking what the hell he was playing at. But we've stuck with each other, because there is no way I can be without him. When we're apart, it hurts so much. I never knew that I could feel so much for someone that just lying next to him would make me gasp with the swell of emotion. He's my best mate, my rock, and the best fucking lover in the whole damn world.

We've been together for just over 5 years now, and people do accept us for what we are these days. We've been living together for almost the same amount of time. We worked together for 3 years so that we would never be apart, and now we both work from home together. Every day I look at him and feel more in love with him, and he tells me the same all the time. We honestly can't go more than a day apart before rushing into each other's arms again. We have no secrets.

Regardless of other people's judgements, follow your heart. Because 5 years ago we knew this wasn't some simple "lets be together because we're bored". There is no way I'd be in a relationship with this age gap if I had any choice, but that's what Mick is, and I love the wisdom he brings to me, and he loves the clarity I give to him.

And he still keeps me up til 3 every night :D
(, Tue 2 Sep 2008, 15:04, 17 replies)
I'm so sorry
So, I manage to cut through the social anxiety.

I've got her number.

She agrees to come back to mine for 'a little bit of privacy' whilst her mates waited for her at the club.

We're on my bed, tearing each other's clothes off.

Now, time for a bit of 'Q&A':

Did I forget to have any condoms?
Did I fail to get it up even when she said 'no bother, I'll just have to go down on you instead' (HER ACTUAL WORDS)?
Did she fall off the bed as she moved to do some kind of routine to 'get me going' (her words again)?
Did she crack her head on the wardrobe as she fell off?
Did she proceed to vomit everywhere?
Did the bog seat smack her on the nose after I'd managed to haul her half-naked semi-unconscious body to the toilet to save the mess?
Did this mean she'd become a bloodied, panda eyed, crying, vomiting, complete car-crash of a woman?
Did I escort her back to the club?
Did her mates threaten to call the police after I'd returned her looking like what can only be described as a victim of domestic violence?
Did this whole farce fire me back into the socially-impaired class of human beings?

Yes. Oh yes.

The best thing about it, I called her the next day to see if she fancied 'trying again sometime'.

The response was, shall we say, lacking.
(, Sat 30 Aug 2008, 10:42, 3 replies)
I shat onto my her out of a hotel window in Bracknell
I had accidentally locked myself inside a second-floor chair-storage cupboard on my way to a conference being held at the hotel, I shouted and banged but nobody heard me. Eventually nature took over and for some reason I decided to make a mess out of the window and onto the plant beds below. I hadn't realised that this was sometimes used by hotel staff for impromptu fag breaks and in the time between checking the coast was clear and getting into the right position she'd leant against the wall to enjoy a quick B&H. She was horrified of course and furiously marched upstairs to find the culprit, obviously I was pleased to be free and very apologetic as you can imagine. I offered to pay for new clothes, a hair-cut and to buy her dinner as an apology, somehow she accepted - we hit it off and have been together for 17 years, married for 14 with two kids.
(, Wed 3 Sep 2008, 18:31, 4 replies)
The Chat Up Line Oscars
Over the years I've been both on the receiving end of requests to go out with someone and I've also done my fair share of pursuing the object of my affections.

Chaps don't despair at how cringeworthy or crap your approaches are…even the worst ones sometimes work.

So here in full Chickenlady Through The Ages Style here are my Dating Oscars


For the Worst Ever Chat Up Line

A drunken sixteen year old lad by the name of Mark who simply shoved his tongue down my throat at a party, no 'hello, what's your name' none of that at all.

I dated him for just under a year



For the Best Chat Up Line Combined with Costume

A drunken soldier by the name of Andy who was dressed as a Roman - his toga made from a bed sheet and his 'olive wreath' around his head made from a passing hazel bush.

"Fancy coming to an orgy?"

I dated him for two weeks - he wasn't lying about the orgy



For the Most Unpleasant Chat Up Line

A drunken student in the SU bar,

"Can I shit in your handbag?"

Ignored him




For The Cheekiest Chat Up Line

A complete stranger,

"I've got naked photos of you"


A brief fling and a short friendship



For The Most Honest Chat Up Line

He had already succeeded in asking me out to dinner - before we went he had followed up my acceptance by phoning me to confirm that I was still on for the meal - a nice touch.

We ate our meal in a nice pub, he refused to allow me to buy even a drink - nice but I also felt a little creeped out by this - I'm used to paying my way or at least buying a drink.

On the journey home he came out with the line that clinched it….

"I'm not up for playing Happy Families. Your place or mine?"

A brief fling involving lots and lots of meaningless but very athletic sex and an enduring friendship


For The Most Rural Chat Up Line

In a bar, said by a fit and healthy looking outdoor type, "I've got my own tractor you know."

Married, produced children with, split up with - he was lying - the tractor wasn't his own, it was his dad's and he loves that more than anything else in the entire world



For The Sneakiest and Most Manipulative Chat Up Line

Car Share to a party?

We'd better meet up first to make sure we get on, nothing worse than sharing a car for hours with someone you can't stand. Visit to an art gallery, trip to a pub, all good. Time to say goodbye, "See you next month then for the party!"

Ten minutes later….

Phone goes,

"Erm…I've missed my last train."
"Me too"
"I know, let's get a hotel room!"

Just coming up to nine months…...Oh, and I'm the recipient of that last Oscar - he didn't have any idea of what he was walking into.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 16:15, 7 replies)
Woman related twattery
When it comes to my own lovelife, I'm a complete Beadlehands of the first degree. Normally, when a member of the opposite sex shows any kind of interest a hidden psychological switch in my brain changes it's default setting from "Confident, articulate and smiley" into "Blabbering, awkward mongtoid" and a cringeworthy descent into drooling haplessness ensues.

Many a promising smile or warmly comfortable first date scenario has descended into a belming farce (minus the obligatory trouser dropping) thanks to this hidden brain switch I seem to be blessed with, from my earliest days of earnest lady fumbling. It’s nothin short of a miracle that I ever managed to get my end away at all.

My salvation I suppose, was to adopt an attitude where I simply pretend that I’m either chatting away to a stranger or that I’m having a drink with a friend. That way, I can appear all cool and non-committal, while avoiding frightening the ladies away with any unseemly spakkardness. Having said that, hedging my bets so to speak had led me many a time to realize – often months or years after the event – that I’ve missed an open goal in somewhat spectacular, Stuart Pearce style. Occasionally, this realization will come to me when I’m in a public space.

“Mummy, why is that man in the car smacking his head on his steering wheel? What's a 'cunt'?”

To give an example of PJM’s sterling spazziness with the laydees, we’re going to have to beckon you dear readers back in time to 1994, probably sometime in July to be accurate. PJM is in his local fleapit nightclub and is stood near the dancefloor clutching an overpriced pint of beer which has some similarities to the act of making love in a boat; namely it’s fucking close to water. The club is reverberating to the sounds of Alex Party’s absolutely atrocious “Don’t Give Me Your Life”. PJM’s alcohol dulled mind is probably thinking “God, this track is awful. When I’m running the country, whoever is responsible will be shot”.


"PJM, haven’t seen you in a while? How are you?”

I’m shaken from my wallflower-esque torpor by a familiar looking brunette with dark eyes. It’s Melanie MacDonald. Ah, Melanie.

I used to have a McJob at a well known high street stationers while I was studying for my A Levels. If I may come across all Terry Thomas for a moment or two ("Me? With a group of privately educated schoolgirls? With my reputation"); I was aware that one of my co-workers was showing some interest in me and that some of her schoolfriends, finishing their final year of GCSEs at the local ladies private school were turning up to check me out. Most of them would pretend to flick through the pages of What Horse or whatever and gawk awkwardly at me, but the boldest actually strode up, calmly put something she wanted to buy on my counter and engaged me in conversation. Yep, that was Melanie. Bold, charming and articulate.


Two years had now passed since those gang of awkward teenage girls and Melanie was now of voting age. She was also rather lovely, dark hair, dark eyes and possessing an alluringly curvaceous shape. The gist of the ensuing conversation has been lost in the mists of time, but the upshot was that Melanie pressed a piece of paper into my palm containing her phone number and asked me to give her a call sometime.

Now 1994 was a very bad year for me. I was then struggling with a serious illness that left me two and a half stone underweight. Yes, I realize I was in a nightclub and drinking beer, but I wasn’t about to abdicate from my social responsibilities. Believe you me, I ended up paying for every night out.

I think I called Melanie once, chatted for about an hour and didn’t follow anything up. Over the months and following years, I often wondered why Melanie gave me her phone number. I guess I kind of kicked myself for not following up a friendship, but c’est la vie and all.

I lamented that women like Melanie never found me attractive, should I ever end up having a girl as pretty as Melanie make a pass at me in the future - hypothetically speaking of course - I'd overcome my innate bell-endedness and make the very most of whatever opportunity presented itself.

What do you mean “That’s a shit story?”. Well the story isn’t quite complete folks, for we’re going to revisit the same club but three years hence in July 1997. PJM is now back enjoying good health again and is stood by the dancefloor clutching an overpriced, pissy-weak pint of lager in his hand swaying gently to the rhythm of Olive and “You’re not alone”, not the finest example of the genre but much better than Alex-Cunting-Party.

“PJM! Hello!”

I was startled by a familiar sight in front of me. Oh my stars, it’s Melanie MacDonald again. We talked for a while, reminisced about mutual friends and old times, had a drink or two and eventually went our separate ways having made vague promises to “catch up” at some point.

Melanie was as alluringly lovely as ever. Oh yes, she was quite something to behold. I was feeling a bit of a warm glow to be honest, nice to be acknowledged in such a fashion and all. I remembered warmly that promise I'd made to myself three years earlier. Could she...? Possibly...? Nah... Surely not.

I headed to the bar, whereupon I rejoined the chap I was out clubbing with and gained the unwanted attention of a bloke called George, who I went to school with. George was frankly a knob, never letting an opportunity to show pass him by and was doing his damnedest to impress me with tales of his derring do. All of a sudden, someone forces their way in between the pair and thrusts a piece of paper into my bewildered hand.

“PJM, I’m back from Uni for the summer. I’d really like to spend some time with you over the next few weeks. Call me”. With that, she departed to her waiting taxi, leaving a trail of perfume in her wake as if to reassure me that what just happened wasn’t an hallucination.

My mouth dropped open, as did the mouths of my two drinking partners. What. The. Fuck. They couldn't believe their eyes. Damn it, I couldn't believe mine. George stood there mouth opening and closing with no sound coming out. Like a gulping like a goldfish, aware that he was well and truly beaten. Thank Christ for that, he was beginning to bore me to tears.

I pressed the phone number into my pocket.

But I never did call Melanie.

Why? Because the following day I had a prearranged first date with someone else.

That "someone else" ended up becoming my ex-wife.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 15:15, 9 replies)
I set my luggage on fire
at Warsaw airport. By mistake, with a huge hotrock from a poor quality European budget cigarette.

Since at the time I was attempting to hail a cab in a country where I couldn't even read a roadsign, with my back to my suitcase, and since it was night time, and about minus 15, I had completely failed to notice the telltale smell and smoke.

I suddenly heard an odd noise, and span around to find this beautiful young woman jumping up and down on my suitcase. I assumed she was pissing about, Jackass-style, for the benefit of some nearby mates, and started to launch into a whingy tirade of 'knackered traveller just off a bad flight'-style abuse.

But she then quickly pointed out the burnt hole in the top of my case, and the yellow scorch mark on the sole of her white slip-on shoe, and said in the coolest accent ever, 'y'know, I fink it is a good job you got ov the plane when you dit,' - which, once I'd clocked what had happened, made me laugh a lot.

We shared a cab back into town, went for a drink, met up the next day, and ended up spending pretty much the whole week together, on and off. After a year of repeating the meet-up (sans baggage fire) every couple of months or so, either here or back over there, she moved to England full-time to do a Masters degree, and we're currently shacked up in central Manchester.

Funny, the more I tell that story, the more I can't believe it's actually really about me. I must be the luckiest hapless luggage arsonist in the universe.
(, Tue 2 Sep 2008, 14:25, 2 replies)
I've decided to hell with brevity, this one deserves words.
Well, way back in the mists of time I was in the first year of University, living in a halls of residence referred to by lecturers as Stalag 17 - yes, it was THAT nice.

Anyway, In the first term I was badly missing the current girlfriend, and after being drunkenly preyed on by a diminutive Scottish lunatic, and giving into the lonliness I was feeling in the arms of this smoke-tasting deviant I soon found myself single, even more alone and more miserable than before... Uni was, quite frankly, shit.

Towads the end of the term however, I'd assembled a new band, and a fairly large group of mates, I was starting to enjoy things again, but there was still a gaping hole where my romantic life should be. I went home for Christmas, bumped into the now-ex and didn't feel too bad, save for the longing to find someone new...

Upon my return I managed to get blind drunk, go running through the halls and smash my head into a door. The resulting bump was the size of a tennis ball, and it was only when I saw the copious amount of blood leaking from it that I decided to take action. I stuck a plaster on it and went out to a mate's gig.

That head injury became quite the talking point, and it wasn't long before I was chatting to a couple of ladies I'd noticed in halls a few times, thanks to their concern regarding my still bleeding head...

Over time I started to see one in particular around more and more... especially in the local pub (frequented by the Krays apparently, but then 90% of the pubs in London say that). She had chestnut curls down to her shoulders, Irish eyes that were deep brown and could have contained whole universes, a gorgeous pear shape that made her slim and curvy all at once, and a taste for alternative clothes and music. She ticked every single box I had, plus several I didn't even know about.

One night, after I was stuck between two tables and the aforementioned Scots deviant for hours, I'm rescued from the conversation by the chestnut curled angel. After chatting for a bit, I'm distracted by a mate at the bar and her group of mates seem to be heading off back to halls for the night, when one of them comes over and asks if I want to come back with them and watch Parenthood. Even I, with my near pathalogical need to fuck things up for myself managed to agree to a night in a room with a load of girls and Steve Martin film.

I ended up sitting next to a certain lady of Irish descent, and as the film went on, both with arms crossed, our hand touched... gently at first, then as we both got more confident this turned into a full fledged holding hands...

In time, the movie ended, I have no idea what happens in it to this day, and people began to leave and head back to their own rooms to sleep. Once outside the friend's room, we kissed, and kissed and kissed, not caring who was wandering past at the time (for the record though it was only a trainee teacher and rugby player from Leeds, off his tits on ketamine that walked past). When we finally stopped, I was shaking - my jaw, my hands, semingly my whole body trembled with joy. We parted ways, and agreed to meet up the next day as I stumbled, like babmi in the headlights of a juggernaut, back to my room.

The next day, we met at 12:00, and didn't stop talking the rest of the day, learning everyting there was to know about each other. We spent the night together, and the night after that, and the one after that. In the time since I don't think we've been apart longer than three consecutive nights, and even then only because of work or moving house. Seven years on from that, we're now married, and expecting our first child. Sometimes, just sometimes, life deals you a winning card.

No apologies, it's been worth every second.
(, Mon 1 Sep 2008, 11:07, 4 replies)
"Fancy coming back to mine for a coffee"?
The aftermath of my marriage breakup was a tumultuous whirl of bitter recrimination, new found confidence, desperate lows and the occassional manic high. Alcohol abuse became extremely rife as I could hardly bear to sit in my flat alone at night for fear of bouncing off the walls. It's fair to say that I found out that it's actually quite easy to strike up a conversation with random strangers in pubs. It beats talking to yourself.

One Friday night (Comic Relief Night 2003 to be exact - March 14th), as I was preparing to meet some older mates from my dive club, my mobile rang. It was Dave, a former colleague. "We're on the piss in Morpeth tonight", said he, "get your boots on and meet us in 10 minutes".

And so I did. I had been over to Amsterdam a few months earlier with Dave and his mates, and had a great time - it would be good to catch up with them again. And so it was. We drank, chatted and laughed. We also nearly got thrown out of one bar, an 'internet' cafe (established as such in order to get a licence - the internet is long gone in there) after Dave thought it would be fun calling up Veronica Mozer scat porn websites. *EDIT* Do not, under any circumstances, Google this delicate lady, as Spimf appears to have discovered to his cost...

And so we wound our way from pub to pub, until we hit upon HQ...

HQ was possibly the most hideous place in the town, a meat market of the lowest order and the highest prices. The lads were keen to go in as it had a late licence, I was less so, having experienced the horror before. But the call for more beer won out, and in I went.

The lads did their usual chatting to groups of women thing. I wasn't particularly bothered that night, and to be honest I'm something of a spak-knuckled incompetent when in that kind of situation anyway. But then Dave came over to me.

"You need to chat to this lass" he said, and thrust me in front of a small, dark spiky haired female wearing combat pants. And with very beguiling eyes.

"Erm, OK. Hello".

"Hello", she replied.

Silence (apart from the bloody music pumping through the place).

Her: "Do you want a cigarette"?

Me: "OK, thanks"

Her: "I love your jacket".

Me: "Thanks. My wife bought it for me". *Oh, well fucking done, that was classy you utter tit*

And so it went. The conversation got less stilted; she was out with some mates and hadn't wanted to go into HQ either but was dragged in. Eventually we realised that we were alone; Dave and mates having gone off for their minibus home, and her mates having done similar. No worries, we were getting along just fine now after my initial aloofness had worn off.

It was approaching closing time, and she needed to get a taxi home. Only trouble with that is that the queue is huge, and it's not very warm.

"Listen, I live literally just up the street. Why don't you come back for a coffee, and you can call a cab without having to wait in a chav ridden, kebab wrapper infested taxi queue"? I suggested.

So she agreed. I made coffee, she called a cab, and we discovered some mutual tastes in music. Before long the taxi arrived and I escorted her into it. We swapped numbers and arranged a date the following week.

Mid way through the following week when she started texting me Viz top tips I realised we shared more than musical tastes. We still try to get each other to scoot coffee / beer from each other's noses with well timed one liners. We've had our wobbles, but we're getting hitched next year and celebrating that by attending a b3ta bash in Edinburgh.

Length? Five and a half years so far.
(, Fri 29 Aug 2008, 18:57, 6 replies)

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