Friday, 30 December 2011

Getting Old 2: then there'll be tears

'We're very sorry ladies and gentlemen, the next Richmond train is not
for another 15 minutes.'

Sod that for a game of soldiers. I'm out of work on time, there's a
match on telly and I've got a red wine thirst on.
Off the train at Turnham Green. TG terrace. Get to the T junction.
Sure it's quicker to turn right than left for the bus stop. Turn
right. Bullet across the High Road. Fast walk for the bus stop.

There's the 391. Shall I? Shan't I? I shall. A simple jog should get
me there. Hold up. There aren't many at the bus stop, I'd best speed
up a little. Bus looks like he might be off any second.

Warp speed 9. A car screeches to a halt as an unidentifiable blur
leaves only edible dust on his bonnet. Another side road. Easy.
There's not even a car driver to bamboozle with my terminal velocity.
Hang on. What's that? Poorly maintained road? Uneven footing? Our hero
losing his catlike balance? This may not be pretty.

Luckily, our hero's brain was operating at Warp Speeed 10: you're
going down. Of that we can be certain. How are we going to minimize
the pain? Right, first of all, throw your bag away, its not going to
help. Now, there are some more undulations up-ahead and I don't fancy
your chances. You're going to have to attempt the Hedgehog Roll,
difficulty rating 8.4. You're sure I can't attempt to regain my
balance? No way. You've spent too long thinking this through already.
Brace. Brace.

So there I am rolling across the pavement. Sideways. Like Ronaldo
after he's been shot. Maybe I roll four, five times. Maybe I just
slide on my side. Either way, I'm lying in the middle of the road on
my left handside. Dramatically, no cars screech to a halt.

'Are you alright?' says some concerned lady, probably startled as she
must have felt the rush of my tailwind, heard the sound of my machine
gun footsteps, and saw a blur as I raced past her mere seconds before.
'Oh yes. Fine thanks very much ha ha ha' I cheerfully responded as I
limped the 7 miles back to the side of the road where my bag
nonchalantly lay.

Continuing on with my short journey to the bus stop, the 391 mockingly
having just pulled away, I assess the damage: no torn clothing; no
obvious blood but a damn sore left arm, knee and pride. I should
imagine I'll be black and blue underneath.
And then I arrive at the bus stop. 267 to Fulwell: 18 minutes.

Your homework:
- why did my brain have sufficient time to work out the best way to
fall yet decided it couldn't be bothered to try and regain balance?
- how disappointed am I to no longer be able to say,'you know, I can't
remember the last time I fell over sober; must have been when I was a
- is the fall down to my half hour old hhhhaircut and should barbers
be made to warn clients that they should only walk until they get used
to their new aerodynamicism?

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