I thought this blog would be a good way to retell stories I’d come across in a long and adventurous life. I try to be a good storyteller so I always gather all the facts of each story, in anticipation that readers would ask questions. However, blogs it seems, are not interactive, so no one commented or asked any questions, which has been a big disappointment. I have had a few messages from people who had taken the time and made the effort to just be sarcastic, a criticism I can accept, but at my age, I don’t take sarcasm well. So, after three years, I intend moving on and directing my efforts elsewhere. As a farewell, I leave you with a bit of humour.
Motorbikes and girls don’t mix
When I left school in 1956 I got a job as the town’s Telegram Messenger-Boy who first rode a pushbike but later when I turned 16, graduated to a 125 cc BSA Bantam motorbike. I thought I was pretty cool, with a flash red motorbike to ride, a crash helmet with goggles and best of all a leather jerkin and a wide leather belt with a leather telegram pouch. I often managed to stop the bike out the front of the Post Office in order to chat to my envious mates. For effect, I kept the motor running and undid the chin-strap on my helmet to give myself the John Wayne tough-guy appearance. This particular day, I had the motor revving and the bike in gear with the clutch in and chin strap dangling, while I regaled my mates with stories of speed. Just then a girl I’d known from school and rather fancied, and hoped to ask out on a date, walked down the street, she smiled and gave me a little shy wave. So Mister Cool, (that’s me for those of you who haven’t been paying attention) revs the motor then casually waves back with my left hand. Now if you know anything about motorbikes you’ll know that to do that I had to let out the clutch with a bang. Well! The bike lurched forward at speed and struck the bumper of a parked car about five metres up the road. Unfortunately, I didn’t lurch forward with the bike, I did a, beautifully executed, (I have to say) backwards summersault off the bike and into the street. My, undone chin-strap helmet came off and when it hit the road, dislodged the goggles which flew into the carriage-way and was run over by a large, slow-moving lorry, which I was obliged to witness in close-up detail from ground level. I never did get a date with that girl, I got the impression, she thought I was just showing off, doing circus tricks on the company bike to impress her.
The Night Intruder.
Ever since I was in the Navy, I have sported a full beard which I’m sure has enhanced my rugged good looks and gave me a rather swash-buckling devil-may-care piratical appearance. My wife, on the other hand, has never liked my beard, claiming it looks moth-eaten and makes me look old and decrepit, which of course is nonsense. However, last night while my wife was out visiting a relative, I decided, on a whim, to try to please her by shaving off all my facial hair. I thought as she was coming home late after I’d gone to bed, tomorrow morning when she wakes up next to a clean-shaven younger looking chap, she’ll get a pleasant surprise. However, it didn’t work out quite that way.
In the early hours of the morning, I had to get up to go to the toilet, but as I entered the bathroom, there standing in front of the full-length mirror, was an intruder. He was a short fat choochy faced old git, with his scraggly grey hair all over the place like a crazy professor and bulging mad eyes. But the thing that scared me the most and turned my blood to ice, was the look on his ugly mug. The look was a combination of stupidity, surprise, confusion and downright pig ignorance, for what seemed like an age we just stood there looking at each other, he, looking confused and stupid with his three chins quivering with fright, while I, no doubt looking masculine and ruggedly intimidating. Then my old navy training came back and I lunged forward and gave him a swift Liverpool kiss on the bridge of his rather large hooter, quickly followed by a forearm smash to his gob.
I’m not quite sure what happened next but my wife started screaming, which I took to mean the intruder, who had disappeared from my view, was assaulting her, but it turned out my wife had come out to see what the commotion was, caught sight of me, for the first time in her life, without a beard and in the moonlight, thought I was the ghost of my dead brother, which gave her the heebee jeebies, which she still hasn’t quite got over, in spite of downing a bottle and a half of sherry for breakfast. In the morning I had cuts to my forehead and forearm and the big bathroom mirror was smashed to pieces, but no sign of the intruder.
I did do a photo-fit picture of the intruder for the police but they told me I had probably headbutted the intruder so hard that I had become concussed and a little confused because they thought my photo-fit picture of the intruder looked a bit like me. The Police Sargent told me that from my description, he thought the intruder may have escaped from a nearby mental health facility, however as he turned away I heard him say to the Constable “I’m sure somebody has” which I took to mean that they both knew there was a raving loony on the loose but didn’t want to alarm my wife and I. Later I heard the constable say to the sergeant under his breath, “the guy’s a nutcase we should lock him up for wasting police time or have him sectioned under the mental health act.” Then the sergeant replied quietly “or we could charge him with grievous bodily harm on himself.” Which for me just confirmed my suspicions that there was a dangerous mental patient at large and the police were well aware of who he was but were reluctant to alarm my wife and I with the details.They never did catch him and where he disappeared to is one of life’s little mysteries. One good thing came out of it though, my wife has now decided she is not too keen on my clean shaven persona and says she likes me better with a full beard and wants me to regrow it again right away.