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This is a question Eccentrics

We all know someone who's a little bit strange - Mum's UFO abduction secret, or the mad Uncle who isn't allowed within 400 yards of Noel Edmonds.

Tell us about your family eccentrics, or just those you've met but don't think you're related to.

(Suggested by sugar_tits)

(, Thu 30 Oct 2008, 19:08)
Pages: Latest, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, ... 1

This question is now closed.

Shorts all year round
When I lived in Worthing, I frequently saw a bald gentleman wandering around the town. No matter what the weather, he would always have shorts on, never trousers. His sole concession to the cold would be to put a jacket on, but his legs would still be bare. He was always clean and presentable, just a tad underdressed in Winter.

The odd time I overheard him speaking to other people he seemed reasonably lucid and well-spoken (unless I was actually hearing his victim, and hadn't realised), so I don't think he was completely bonkers, just a bit, um, strange.

Maybe he was just an exceptionally hardy fellow. I mean, I've written elsewhere about my tendency not to notice the cold until my friends are human-shaped icicles, but this chap had me beaten.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 18:57, 7 replies)
The revenge of Sadman
Back in the day, a friend of mine used to organise his mates to go to a beer festival held every August Bank Holiday weekend in darkest Gloucestershire.
It was 2 days of physical devastation - drinking "warm" real ale in (if you were lucky) the sunshine, eating what were euphemistically called "Hog burgers", not washing, sleeping under canvas. All in all the sort of weekend it takes a week to recover from.
In any group of friends which centres around one person (A), there is often person (B) who is friends with A, but who A's friends C,D and E can't really stand. And so it was in this case - person B was known to the rest of us as Sadman. Looking like an overgrown child, he had the unfortunate combination of acne, thinning and receding hair, large glasses, a treble voice and stood probably 5 foot 5 inches tall. This, no-one could help. However he was also pedantic, boring, tight with his cash and would on occasions wear a straw boater. He could talk for England on a variety of topics he knew little about, cadged weed without either buying any or paying for it, and fell short of being eccentric as eccentrics are generally interesting in some way shape or form. This guy was just plain odd. And sad. Hence the name "Sadman".
Anyway, this tale is about such a person getting (inadvertently) the upper hand.
As I mentioned, all of us, including Sadman, camped during this beer festival. One year, his tent basically consisted of a sheet and two sticks. It looked like something out of Winnie the Pooh rather than a real tent. The edges came some way short of the ground - it was a typical Sadman effort - cheap, laughable, and stood out like a sore thumb on the campsite.
On the second night of the festival, with 36 hour's drinking behind us, we got to sleep in our respective tents in the early hours of the morning. A few short hours later, I woke up, convinced that I'd pissed myself. Strange, I thought, firstly as this had never happened to me, secondly because the "piss" was as cold as ice.
In the night, there had been an incredible storm, which was still going on, which had rendered my tent useless. I had finally sobered up enough to wake up, shivering, and feeling like death. As I moved to assess the damage, I heard a whisper from another tent.

"Mordred - is your tent dry ?"

"No - no point asking you if yours is ?". Both of us then woke up friend A, who'd driven us there, and then spent the rest of the night shivering in his car.

The only thing that kept our spirits up was the thought of Sadman's tent. Schadenfreude (look it up !) kept us happy in the knowledge that if we were soaked, he was going to be completely drenched. We awaited the coming of the dawn when we could see how his "tent" had stood up to the cosmic battering.

And, as per the title of the tale - miraculously, it had somehow (how ?) kept him dry all night. So he awoke with a smile on his face.

Sometimes God loves those who aren't quite like the rest of us. Even if I can't imagine the poor bastard ever had a shag in his life he didn't pay for, on that day, he was laughing, more so when we paid for breakfast on the way home and he was unaccountably without funds to reimburse us.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 18:35, Reply)
To understand Father I need you to bring two people to mind.
First the Major from Fawlty Towers. Secondly the man from the ads for Glastonbury on the BBC, the one who talks about a woman walking down the road with no top on.
Well Father has the personality of the Major but the accent of the man from the Glasto ads.

Also he is as daft as they come.

He will walk do the pub in the next village with myself, Mr Bin and Mother. Nothing odd there, he would make us be a brass band on the way.

He is not short of a couple of quid so bought himself a shiny new red sports car, built a garage for it to go in, but he wont drive it anywhere because then he would have to wash it again.

On a sunny day he will sit at the top of the garden and will listen for the church bells to ring 6 so he can have a beer. (won't drink before 6)

But the best thing is his comedy racism (please look away if offended by such things).
When "Fresh Prince of Bell Air" was first on the TV he walked in, looked at it for 5 minutes and said, "Bloody Hell, those n*ggers are so rich they've got their own n*gger.
To my very left wing uncle (who he loves wind up), "I've got nothing against n*ggers, everyone should have one, bloody hard workers".

I love my Dad
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 18:04, 4 replies)
Me grandad (QOTW answer again)
Fucking mental bloke, have posted on here before about him. Utterly mad logic to his brain, bordering (and venturing into quite regularly) highly abusive.

Many examples for this;

1. Grandad Tom and me dad goes to a social club. All the tables were taken up, so Tom heads to a table with 3 old ladies on it. "Right, get up, thank you...." he says while pulling a seat out from under one of them.
"Well I never..."
Tom, quick as a flash, "...and you won't with a face like that, thank you, fuck off please."
Instant free table result.

2. Drink driver extreme. He'd drive 40 yards up a small hill to his social club, get pissed as fuck, then drive back and normally park in the wrong drive. One time he did this and coupled his voltzwagen onto a HEARSE, which was parked up in some mourner's drive. When realizing his mistake, he drove back out amd dragged the hearse with him back to his house a few doors down. Much hilarity ensured (police, mourners, undertakers etc etc).

3. He used to practise darts in his kitchen while gran was cooking. She would literally walk back and forth "across the ochie", or as we called it the pantry door, darts missing her head by millimetres.

4. He beat up his next-door neighbour's cat because it was stealing his kitten's milk breakfast. Well I say beat up, he picked it up and punched it into a shed door.

5. He told me when I was 11 in front of all me family that I was the last male family member with my surname, so I should get out there and get fucking :)

6. He was fucking awesome at chess. I mean dangerously fucking awesome. He'd play games by mail for months. Scary good. Never made any money from it though :(

7. He hates religion. If anyone turned up on his doorstep preaching he'd chase them right up the road while screaming "Leaching bastards!!!"

There are more, but they are some of my faves :)
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:57, 8 replies)
there was this guy behind the spud van in tamworth
preachin about god...but he wasn't so much preaching about god...he was preaching about global warming...saying that god has a thermostat and that we're all bad so god decides to turn down the thermostat to make the weather bad....fortunately we got more customers so they could all bitch about him =]
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:39, Reply)
My uncle's hobby
Is snatching flies out of the air with one hand.

I tried it and it's great fun. Now I do it too.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:37, 2 replies)
My grandmother
Well, she wasn't any more eccentric than any other old lady, but she did have a shockingly filthy mind... She absolutely loved rugby, and had a knowledge of it equal to any male rugby fan you might see in the pub during the 6 nations. But she really loved it because it had men in tight shorts grappling each other and getting all sweaty and muddy.

I grew up thinking it was normal for nice little old ladies to say gleefully "I do hope that nice Victor Obogu gets his shorts ripped off again!"
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:32, Reply)
Disco Dave
Disco Dave was a portly chap who could name the artist,album and year of any tune that came on the pub jukebox.

Not sure what was wrong with him I think cerebal palsy hence he drove round in an electric wheelchair from pub to pub drinking pints through a straw.

After one 10 pint session he was barred from the pub for shitting himself in his wheelchair, he drove off grinning like a loon.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:17, Reply)
The real life Johnny Bravo
I know of someone (friend of a friend) let's call him "Don" who wanted to chat up a girl at a bus stop. Not so strange.

But what did he do?

I wasn't there, but apparently, in the most Johnny-Bravo-esque
way possible, he began attacking the bus stop, karate chopping it, punching it and kicking it all while doing this Johnny Bravo "heg harg hurgh!" war cry while winking at this girl, all while the bus stop was shaking, and concerned motorists gawped on by...

He expected her to be impressed.

The girl ended up getting on a bus she didn't want simply to get away from him.

He's also known around here for speaking to strangers about his sex fantasies and trying to pole dance on the poles of crowded buses that soon become rather empty.

Dear oh dear.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 17:14, 2 replies)
There's a bible basher in my town centre
Who has been known to preach from a copy of Harry Potter every now and then.

Even the nutters have their own nutters it seems.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 16:49, Reply)
I've posted this before, but it fits this QOTW perfectly so I'm posting it again.

My local pub is a little rock bar in a small town in the northwest of England.

"The resident mentalist, Michael, is a daytime alcoholic who comes in for a Guinness or eight every day. While he's there he likes nothing better but to sit there muttering to himself - occasionally shouting such gems as "FUCK OFF! JUST FUCK OFF!" to no one in particular.

Yesterday, he came up to me, and spoke.

"If you think I'm talking to myself, you're wrong." he said. "I became psychic 3 months ago. I'm not talking to myself, I'm talking to the other psychics. Not that I care what anyone thinks anyway."

Then he ambled away, muttering.

Makes me wonder whether he IS faking it."

Recently Michael has had a haircut and a shave. He now has a mullett. He's still just as mental.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 16:35, Reply)
My bird's dad
He wrote a book about his marriage to her mum after they got divorced. I read a bit of the finished manuscript, page after page of details such as:

"she would always place the saltpot just out of my reach".

He was hoping to get it published but, strangely, no publisher was interested.

Edit: It was to be titled "The Lion Mauls Androcles".
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 16:32, Reply)
On the way to work just 1/2 hour ago
Me and a mate in traffic heading towards the office. We reach a speed bump road passing a school, and Richy lowers his speed accordingly.
Unfortunately though a car heading past us in the other direction did not, as the old man driving the Peugot 206 hit the speed bump in front of us doing 30+ and aptly being thrown from his chair directly head first into his own roof, before mouthing off obscenities and slowing down for the next bump. Lolz.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 16:32, 4 replies)
Guy from my local
Wear a metallica tshirt.
Look like Richard Whiteley.

Pick one.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 16:03, 3 replies)
There is a gentleman
who from about November onwards can be seen hanging around outside the Barnes and Noble bookstore on the University of Chicago campus protesting loudly and with full colour pictures about what he considers to be the evils of circumcision.

Dressed as Santa.

EDIT: I've had a "tip off" that he's not really Santa at all. Ho ho, and indeed ho...
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 15:41, 10 replies)
Sir John Gielgud
...the famous Shakespearian actor, who in his later years played Dudley Moore's butler in Arthur, was a famous eccentric and coprophiliac.

Every morning he would eat one of his own turds from an egg-cup.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 15:27, 5 replies)
The Barnes family
where I grew up, this lot were notorious.

The parents were related before their marriage, I suspect, and the resultant children were, well, odd. The kids were just odd - the parents were well beyond that stage.

Ma Barnes used to chase after random children with a washing pole. Not the line prop, the actual metal pole that you attach the rope to. It even had a lump of concrete on the bottom. Needless to say, she was a big woman, and if she started after you, you ran like hell. To my knowledge she never caught anyone, which is probably the only thing that kept her out of prison.

Pa Barnes was a 'collector'. He collected anything that could conceivably be burned on a fire. Everyone else was content to burn coal or wood, but not Pa Barnes. He had a home-made wheelbarrow which he spent all evening, every evening, pushing around the place collecting things to burn. Bags of rubbish, old bits of fence, tatty old clothes raked out of a bucket, you name it. He only tried to burn an old tyre once, though, I heard the Fire Brigade talked him out of trying it again. The same local Fire Brigade who eventually launched a campaign against this guy. They were called out to chimney fires in his house at least once a week. They made official complaints to the council every time they were out, to no avail.

I could almost understand if they were living in dire poverty. They weren't. Pa Barnes worked for the Inland Revenue and was apparently quite senior there. They had a nice car, the children were clearly well fed and were always decently clothed despite being raised by two oddballs. Pa Barnes just point blank refused to buy coal or logs for the fire.

I wonder now if he was some sort of prototype 'eco-warrior' determined to keep the land fill sites empty. Either that, or he was just nuts.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 15:26, Reply)
Ah yes, school...
Our school in the lovely town of Strathaven had a few brilliant/mad teachers to boot.

-The chemistry teacher who liked to tell us how to make bombs and explosions.

-The physics teacher who sneezed like a bomb and kept a battery powered singing kangaroo in his classroom cupboard.

-The dippy english teacher who came in swathed in pink, let us take class outside in the summer under the shade of a tree, and loved exam times because the papers "flipped out" and were pink.

-The calm, quiet LOTR obsessed history teacher who gave the best talks ever before making us work. It once involved him climbing on the desk and lying upside down with his limbs in the air to demonstrate what someone frozen on a lifeboat might look like. Then he crashed a toy boat into a boy's head pretending it was an ice berg to show us what the Titanic looked like sinking.

The top prize has to go to the other history teacher though. He looked like a merry Winston Churchill and kept some very odd classroom rules. If you wanted a ruler, you had to ask for a Kaiser/Queen/King as they were all "rulers". He played music in class, such as 50's songs or Gilbert and Sulivan tapes.

He was the creator of the Ten Minute Rule.

This was where he brought out, from his locked cupboard, a hand bell, a timer shaped like an apple and a sand egg timer. Setting the apple and flipping the timer, he would declare the Ten Minute Rule had began. This was queue for us all to work in absolute silence for ten minutes. If you talked, you got two chances before being given a punishment excercise. After the ten minutes were up, he would ring his little bell and we could chat again.

It was his way of making sure we atleast worked hard for ten minutes of the class.

There were posters though, which he made us make. And a phrase, which he declared... a lot:

Don't be a fool! Support the Ten Minute Rule!

School was ace...
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 14:51, 3 replies)
On the way to the Isle Of Mann
The head Of maintainance at my place has just told me this story a few seconds ago. As he is not a B3TAin I shall relate the story on his behalf.
Not sure if it counts as an eccentric or just a nutter story, but I think it's a very fine line.

He and his wife, who is a nurse had travelled to the Isle of Mann over the weekend to see thier son who lives there with his Manx girlfreind.
On the return journey on the ferry there was a commotion behind them and it quickly became apparant that someone had keeled over (oh funny! - ferry - keeled over. Ahem. Never mind)
The casualty is quickly removed to the first aid room by junior naughtical types. A few moments later a message is relayed via the Tannoy system to the effect "Is there a doctor on board?" So Mick's wife, the nurse, follows where the casualty was taken.
He is in the first aid surrounded by a load of very worried looking teenage ferry people. The nurse checks the guy over who is still twitching slightly from some form of siezure. She is just beginning to explain the situation to the crew when a very oddball gentleman walks in and says "I'm a doctor, get me 10 cc's of injectable ampicillin stat!"
Never looked at the casualty, didn't ask any questions, and ampicillin is a f£$king antibiotic , and WTF does "STAT" mean?. The nurse pulls one of the staff to one side and tells them that whatever this chap is - he is NOT a doctor.
Just then the bursar (or someone with lots of gold braids) walks in and asks for a report of the sitution. He listens to one of the crew until he notices the "doctor" in the corner of the room (who has now been dis-engaged from the still prone casualty).
"What the hell is Mad Ernie, doing here?"
"Mad Ernie?" says junior crewmember "er, he said he was a doctor"
"Yeah well," says Bursar "last week he said he was the fucking captain, get rid!"

Which I suppose goes to show that if you find yourself being tended by someone after being run-over, having a fit, or coming around from unconsciousness-- always, always ask for ID.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 14:47, Reply)
The Story Of Frank
A week or so ago, I went to an unknown bands night in a local rock venue with the rest of my band (guitarist and drummer).

We weren't playing, but we're looking to get some gigs so we figured that we could make some useful contacts there.

As I wasn't driving, I proceeded to get rather hammered on whisky, and talked to just about every musician in the place.
I managed to get a lot of info about local venues, names and numbers of promoters, recording studios and other bands, so it was all good really.

Anyway, I went out for a well-deserved drunken cigarette, happy that I'd managed to get so much information, and that the night had been worthwhile.

There was a strange man out there, struggling to light his cigarette, so I offered him a light, and we got chatting.

This is where it gets blurry... The alcohol had hit hard by this point.

His name was Frank, and he was in his late fifties, by the look of it.
He was pretty well dressed, wearing a black suit and a dark red shirt, but there were a couple of odd things about him.
He had a massive scar across his forehead, he was quite short, he had a cane, and piercing blue eyes.
He said that he was a music promoter, and we started chatting about that, and I mentioned that my band are looking for gigs.

He asked if we had a demo, and I went to grab one from my drummer.
Frank followed me, and had a chat with my bandmates, took the CD and my contact details and said that he'd call me in the next two days.

I fully appreciate that he's likely some weirdo, but I can't shake the feeling that he's exactly how I imagine the devil to look, in human form.

Maybe I shouldn't have given my number to him...
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 14:28, 9 replies)
I used to run a multi-user dungeon (MUD) game at university. People would walk around a world casting spells, fighting monsters etc. Think of it as a text based World of Warcraft and you'll get the idea. A few of my friends were set up as admins so they could help out. In hindsight it was actually good training for defensive programming, supporting users, developing networked apps, minimizing downtime etc. but at the time it was an excuse to piss about in computer labs instead of actually working. It was a good laugh.

Then came Satchelman, thus described because he was lanky with a greasy hair, a weedy moustache, a long dirty raincoat and a large satchel on him at all times. And an impenetrable cloud of body odour. I think he was a year below us. I don't recall him ever talking to us once, but somehow he learned about the MUD and created a character. Fine, let him play since everyone was welcome.

So he plays for a bit and then decides he is going to be a dickhead. MUDs let you use commands like shout to talk to everyone in the game world. Normally you might do it if you want help or something. But he starts spamming shout commands for no reason, filling up the screen. Then he spams some more. Then he starts bothering specific people by using the similar whisper to direct spam.

So after a few warnings (duly ignored) we delete his character. Then he signs up a new character and does it again. Then he gets deleted. This went on for a few weeks until we decided to get a bit more proactive.

We started to append "the Sad Twat" to his character names which also had the effect of muting them. Then we would banish any new characters to a room which I still have the description for: "The Sad Room: You are in a room especially designed for sad twats like yourself. I hope you like it here, because every time you quit you will end up back here and there is no way out."

This must have pissed him off no end. So he started using his l33t hacker skillz to take screenshots of our x11 terminals for reasons unknown. Unfortunately I noticed him doing this and told the system admin who found the screenshots in his folder. Oopsy. He got a warning from the dean and almost chucked out for this.

The funny part is all of this snowballed because he couldn't play nice on a MUD. All these years later I wonder what happened to Satchelman. After we graduated did he go on to annoy someone else? Did his social skils advance from non-existent to neglible? Did he use a deodorant? Is he still being a dickhead on some other online service? I may never know but Satchelman is still a treasured memory from uni.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 14:19, 8 replies)
Manic Roommate Part 4
It was almost Christmas time, and as is the case in most dormitories, we were getting a bit nostalgic for childhood Christmas specials. As this was before the advent of VCRs (or rather, when they were still new technology) and well before YouTube and the like, you had to wait until they came on TV- and they were only played once. So we decided to have a Grinch party.

Off we trooped to the liquor store, every one of us getting a bottle of whatever rotgut we preferred, and met in the lounge at 7:00. I had a bottle of brandy and K.O. opted for Southern Comfort.

We sat there for two hours, drinking and watching the Grinch and Charlie Brown and Rudolph and Frosty, and I put down probably close to a pint of brandy. K.O. had downed about the same amount of bourbon by this point. And yet we were both completely sober.

The last show ended and I looked over at K.O. "Want to go down to the Fort and get a beer?"

"Sure." We grabbed our coats and headed down the hall.

What neither of us had realized was that sitting still like that, the alcohol hadn't really been absorbed into our systems. But once we started to move-

When we reached the stairs at the end of the hall I felt a faint buzz. When we got to the bottom of the stairs I felt a strong buzz. When we got twenty feet from the dorm I felt quite merry indeed. When we had gone a hundred feet we were both blasted.

My memory of the trip across campus is rather jumbled. I do, however, recall K.O. climbing a fire escape on one of the old buildings and going up onto the slate roof in the snow storm, and having to climb up there to get him down.

I also remember him spotting the bell in front of the church and grabbing a rock and beating it.

We made it to the Fort, got our beers, then got separated. I drank mine, found that suddenly it didn't taste good anymore, and decided it was time to go back to bed.

I got to my dorm and the dorm director stopped me in the hall. "Look, do me a favor, okay? Your roommate is upstairs and is very drunk. Can you keep an eye on him and make sure he doesn't do anything else stupid?"

"Sure, Don." I smiled, realizing the irony as I was probably far worse off than K.O., and went to my room. I remember noting that he was there and passed out on his bed, then I climbed into mine and was out.

The next morning I woke up with a slight hangover, but nothing too bad. I heard a groan from across the room. "Morning, K.O.!" I said in an artificially cheerful voice. "How do you feel today? Wanna go get some breakfast?"

"Fuck you. Think I'm gonna die."

I gave a sadistic chuckle and sat up- and noticed a large traffic sign leaning against the wall, still on its steel post. "What the fuck-"

There was a knock at the door and I yelled to come in, and the dorm director entered. "Morning, gentlemen."

K.O. sat up and grabbed his glasses and tried to focus, an apprehensive expression on his face as he realized who was standing over him. "Uhhhh-"

Don looked over the sign post. "I'll bet your shoulder is sore from carrying that thing up three stories. It's going to be even worse after you carry it back to where it came from."

K.O. groaned. "Okay, just let me get a shower first... How much trouble am I in, Don?"

Don's stern expression finally cracked and he burst out laughing. "Man, that was the funniest thing I've seen in years! You were colliding with both walls in the hallway, dragging that thing like Jesus with the cross!" He chuckled again. "Just get rid of it by lunch time, okay? And don't let Security see you." He left, still laughing.

I looked at K.O. He looked at me. He opened the window and together we flung it out as far as we could.

It made a nice SPANNGGG! as it hit.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 14:08, 1 reply)
I'm mad me...
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:53, Reply)
They must put something in the water...
When you venture into the topic of eccentrics, one of the most common places to have such people is schools. Lord knows why, but schools seem to spawn and/or attract absolute nutcases of the highest order. Luckily (Or unluckily, depending on how you look at it) I have had first-hand experience of such raving lunatics which I shall describe thusly. I left school nearly 5 years ago, but I will never forget these true eccentrics.

Mr Wright (RE): Of the crazy professor type, he would go off on wild tangents during lessons. Notable speeches included the history of basketball and why popcorn is one of the greatest inventions in modern history. Homework setting was also an artform, including "Read the bible" and "Watch Songs of Praise".
Had numerous nicknames for people in the class, such as "Haystacks" for someone with bleached blond hair. Once confiscated a yo-yo from a classmate and spent the entire lesson playing with it. Utterly crazy, but one of the most memorable teachers I've had. Got sacked a year later as the school got wind of his behaviour.

Miss Rowat (English): Would casually insult random people in the class, and start shouting for no reason whatsoever. After such outburst, she would carry on as normal. When we had her in Sixth Form, she would regularly say she couldn't be bothered to teach us and tell us to 'bugger off'. Not as crazy as some, but eccentric nonetheless

Mr Attrill (Physics): Was obsessed with physics to the point of hysteria. Would work himself up into such a frenzy when teaching us that he would actually shake, and his voice would have no constancy of pitch. He also once told us to run around the room to experience "The life of an atom". 4 people got injured.

Mr Longden (Chemistry): Would prepare his whole lesson in the lunch break, including writing everything on the blackboard. He would go absolutely potty if someone forgot their ruler, and once kept us back for a whole hour after school because 8 people forgot their ruler. However, he never raised his voice and had a scarily monotonous voice even when angry. Always wore a brown leather jacket.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:51, 3 replies)
Manic Roommate Part 3
About February or so my original roommate stopped by the say hello. "So how are you liking the new roommate?" he asked as we all sat in my room.

"Oh, we get along great. The only thing I had to get used to was the gnomes."

My old roommate stared. "Gnomes?..."

K.O. wheeled around in his chair, eyes aglow. "Yeah, it's the wildest thing! Some nights we'll be sleeping and we'll wake up and there'll be this orange glow coming from the corner, and there'll be one gnome standing on top of my textbooks taking a hit off of Ed when the other one's standing on the desk with a match, going like this!" And he mimed making a circular motion with a torch held over his head.

The old roommate gulped slightly. "Okay, cool, uhh, I'll see you around-" and bolted.

We were still giggling an hour later.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:38, Reply)
A mate of mine
is a big big fan of the Electric Light Orchestra.
Back in the 90s, he went through a phase where he dressed and looked not entirely unlike Jeff Lynne. Shades, curly hair, beard, similar clothes, the full works.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:37, 2 replies)
Saw meets gardeners world
I have a bit of a habit that makes others think I’m a nutter. I will drop whatever I am doing if I notice a slug or snail in my garden and deal with the situation using salt (if I see one in anyone else’s garden I don’t care).

This may sound a little boring but what really puts people off is the fact that I use the salt to create a maze for the slug to escape from. I always make sure the slug has enough room to manoeuvre and there is a genuine route to escape. At one point I was also thinking of adding some kind of obstacles to the mazes (Such as a see saw from a hamster run) but I realised that doing that would have me classed as a full blown loony.

On Saturday I was on my way out to the taxi with my wife for our night out in the town centre when I noticed a slug on my garden path. I will admit that I looked at the wife and made my excuses while I popped back into the house and fetched a salt container, the maze I made was a very crude rushed effort and the wife ranted at me for the entire taxi journey into town.

Just to let you know I’m not a diehard gardener and tbh I don’t know why I do this as I can’t really see a bunch of slugs meeting together and saying “I wouldn’t” go back into Mons garden, it’s a fucking death trap”.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:30, 3 replies)
Manic roommate Part 2
One afternoon I happened to be looking out the window when I spotted a girl that used to hang around with K.O. walking across the campus. "Hey K.O., didn't Kathy drop out?"

"Yeah, a couple of weeks ago, why?"

"Isn't that her there walking over my Seneca Hall?" I pointed.

K.O. looked out the window to where I was pointing. "Huh. You're right." He opened the window to call to her, then emitted a shrill scream and leaped back- and a snowball missed him by less than an inch and plastered the wall.

We looked down to see one of my fraternity brothers and Nurse Ratched falling over with the giggles.

K.O. hated her from that day on.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:28, Reply)
I was quite strange
when I was 16/17, I used to wear extremely outrageous hippie type clothes - huge baggy ethnic material trousers, with ethnic shirts and waistcoats - all clashing horribly. I also had monstrous hair and I'd never shaved, so I had a weird wispy beard. I also occasionally walked around with those chinese balls that clang in my pockets because I liked the bong BONG bong BONG noise as I walked along.

Children used to burst out laughing as I walked past, and people used to unashamedly stare. Looking back, I'm not really sure why I used to dress like this - maybe it was a cry for help or something.

My wife has, unfortunately but understandably destroyed all photographic evidence of this era, otherwise I'd post a pic.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:28, Reply)
My manic roommate
It was 1982 and the Loon was in his second year of uni at a small school in the middle of nowhere. I initially had a roommate who decided to room with a friend of his instead, so he and the friend's roommate agreed to swap.

Enter K.O.

He was one of those weird twitchy guys, a scrawny little thing with glasses, wiry and absurdly strong after years of being on the wrestling team. Just talk to him for a minute and you knew there was something odd about this guy. And there was- he was a manic and intense person who could tell bizarre and surreal stories at any moment, and do it so well that people just sat there, mouths agape, listening to him.

Best roommate, ever.

K.O. was there to study Design and Drafting. This was back in the days when CAD was something that only NASA used, so he did it all by hand. He would sit at his desk, taking the occasional hit off of his bong, Ed (named after a teacher- it was a long and strange story involving Baby Huey), then hunching over his drafting board and carefully working for hours.

One of his assignments was to draw the intersection of two geometrical shapes. He chose to do two cylinders intersecting at right angles. Then he had to cut out what he had drawn and make a physical model of it. He started on Friday and worked very carefully on it, cutting it out of pale green poster board and gluing it together. The end result looked remarkably like Beaker from the Muppet Show.

We lived on the top floor of our dormitory at the inside corner of the L-shaped building. As heat rises, the room tended to be stifling hot in the winter, so we often had the window open. The wind would blow into the face of the building, causing a perpetual updraft outside our window- I used to love flicking cigarette butts out the window just to watch them spin in the air for a moment before rising up and vanishing over the building.

K.O. set his intersection on the windowsill in the sunlight to dry, and I went into the bathroom across the hall. As I sat on the bog I heard a scream worthy of Beaker himself- something like Steve Bollmer at a Microsoft convention- then the slam of our door and frantic footsteps down the stairs. I got up and went back to the room and found it empty, of course, so I sat down to wait for his return.

Five minutes later he came back, cradling his intersection, and in a staccato burst of words told me what had happened. "I had just put it on the windowsill and was taking a hit off Ed when I looked over just in time to see it lift up, float out the window, then take off like Superman. I ran downstairs and out the back door, but it was gone!" His eyes shone with a glint of madness. "Gone! Nowhere! I stood there for a minute looking all over the place, then I looked up- and it landed right in my hands!" He reverently put it back on the windowsill and closed the window.

Yup, just another Sunday with K.O.
(, Mon 3 Nov 2008, 13:17, 2 replies)

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