Forum Activity for @philip-evans

Philip evans
06/25/17 12:58:04PM
31 posts

Not a Fair Trade

West Coast Eisteddfod Online Short Story Competition 2017

Fare Trade
“ Where to Guvnor?” asked the Taxi Driver looking out of his side window.
“ Merthyr Butt….three of us…how much?” asked the youngster dressed as Osama Bin Laden.
Glyn-Neath Taxi Driver, Bobby Boobie tried to get a measure of his would-be passengers.
It was 2.00am in the Morning and the Tara Club had been shut for over half an hour now where had these boys been until now?
He could see that one of them was propped up against the wall and wore a huge floppy Mexican sombrero covering his features.
It had been a quiet night on the rank and Boobie against his better judgement decided he would take a risk and offer these three lads a fare home.
“£80.00 to you Osama but I warn you that that there is a ‘no honk’ policy with my cab firm and if Speedy Gonzales over there is sick in the cab…there will be a further £100.00 clean up fee!” cautioned Bobby.
“ He’s fine…he is just a lightweight that’s all….fell asleep in Club…the dummy…not surprising it was HIS round too on the stag night and me and Donald Trump Junior here had to stump up for his beer!” said Osama.
In a flash, the Arab and USA President had lifted the ‘well oiled’ Mexican into the cab rear seat and positioned him with his head against the passenger side window, hat firmly down over his face to assist with his 20 mile ‘siesta’.
“ There is always one tight bastard isn’t there…!” said the Taxi Driver speaking from experience.
“ The one who is first out of the taxi and last into the pub and goes missing when it’s their round!” said Bobby….” I hate that kind of person don’t you?”
The Mexican grunted, almost as if he realised he was being spoken about behind his back even though it was in front of him.
“ They are out there….said Osama…lots of people trying to catch you!” he laughed evilly in costume character.
“ Especially me!”
Driver Bobby despite being a taxi-driver was no Fred Housego Mastermind Champion.
He led a simple life dominated only by the buzz and crackle of his cab radio.
As he looked into his rear-view mirror he laughed to himself.
What a story he would have to tell if any of his regulars asked him if he had ever picked up anyone famous.
They didn’t get much more famous than Osama Bin Laden and Donald Trump.
As they passed the link road to the Heads of the Valley A465 (T) they saw the now familiar site of McDonalds but tonight tied to the lamppost with a manacles and a ball and chain was a naked man.
“ Is that your Stag?” asked Bobby.
Two of the lads behind nodded sagely.
“ Bloody Hell no wonder she is marrying him with quarter-pounder!” laughed Bobby.
“ He was almost best man in a recent nudist wedding in Afghanistan boasted Trump.
Holding out his finger and thumb he announced to the designated Driver that he had ‘missed it by inches!”
Osama and Trump settled back into their seats for their high-speed journey up the Glyn-Neath Bank in the black Skoda Octavia –the new favoured car of the Hackney World.
“ It goes like a bomb Osama!” chuckled Bobby.
“ I never thought I would ever say that!”
“ Can you slow down a bit…I am a bit of a nervous passenger!” replied the President.
“ I thought you would be used to flying in Airforce One!” replied the Cabbie.
As they reached the Trump Tower Colliery site an overwhelming stench of a real ale beer fart drifted into the front of the cab.
“ Jesus Donald….Is that is one of your Top Trumps?” asked Bobby
“ Do you mind using THAT word! is offensive to us Muslims!” said Osama
“ Besides ….interjected Donald …that isn’t one of mine….it is a Taco Smell…!” said Trump.
“ Check under his pantaloons to make sure his foo-foo valve hasn’t gone!” ordered Bobby.
“ Foo-Foo Valve?” asked Osama.
“ What is that in English or Arabic?” he continued.
“The anal valve that distinguishes between gas and liquid !” replied Bobby.
Moving the shoulder belt of bullet cartridges that had been accidentally plugged into the seat belt holder , Bobby witnessed a tentative hand being pushed under the leather seat occupied by the Mexican.
“ Keep your eyes on the road….will you !” ordered Trump like he was in a CNN press-conference.
“ There is a £100.00 clean up fee if he defecates too!” warned Bobby looking concerned.
“ If I was you Trump…I would build a wall around that Mexican!”
“ In that case you better stop in the next lay-by for me to have a piss !” said Trump also now in character.
“ Why are there any Russian Prossies around?” asked Osama.
“ You want Aberdare Town Centre for that mate!” replied Bobby without looking up.
As the car pulled into the layby, Osama and Trump got out leaving the lifeless Mexican in the Cab.
“ What about him?” asked Bobby nervously.
“ He’s fine…I’ve been on 1001 Arabian Nights out with him and he has never pissed himself yet….whereas Trump here….he IS different!” boomed back Osama.
Trump nudged him for the insult and once again turned his weapon on the Middle Easterner farting loudly in his direction creating a new ‘Guff War!’.
Trump finished his urine stop but Osama kept going for nearly five whole minutes.
“ Hurry up!” asked Bobby threatening to turn on the cab meter if he didn’t end his Tower Shower.
“ Come on Sheik – shake the snake!” came the cry from President Trump, his sweaty orange face-paint leaking in rivulets down his Mount Rushmore from the inside of the cab.
All the while the Mexican was a silent witness to the shenanigans.
The Taxi pulled off from the layby with Bobby Booby this time singing in ‘Mrs Malaprop’ fashion ‘Iranian Men’ to the Geri Halliwell Hit – ‘It’s raining men’ on the radio.
The car sped up and then slowed down at the sign ‘Average Speed Camera’ on the A465 (T) section of the Heads of the Valleys Road which not been finished due to the triggering of Article 50 and Brexit from the European Union.
“ You’re going to have to stop again for me to have a piss again….pull in by the Old Baverstock’s roundabout will you!” demanded Osama of his taxi-driver hostage
“What are you….part camel or something?” asked Bobby once stopping against his better judgement.
“ This time it goes on the water meter!” he warned.
Osama jumped out and an arc of urine sprayed the Kingdom Hall sign.
“ They’ll fine you for that mind you….there were plenty of Jehovah’s Witnesses to that ‘Passover’….and you know how much the Israeli’s love you Arabs!
He jumped back in the cab, white muslin robe now partly stained yellow from the blowback.
At the summit where Snake Valley merged with Merthyr, all the lights twinkled on the homes in the Gurnos that were busy abstracting electricity.
In the distance could be seen the glowing red roofs of the houses in Galon Uchaf that had cannabis plants being cultivated in the roof space or Cash in the Attic as it was known locally.
“ Where in Merthyr are you going?” asked Bobby.
“ We are getting off in Whitebeam Close Gurnos whereas my tight arse Mexican friend here is paying for this trip after all its only fair as we have been buying his tequila all night!” said Trump.
“ He better have money!” threatened Bobby showing his knuckleduster worn for such late night special occasions.
Osama showed Bobby the square bulge in his trousers pocket.
“ More notes than Jose Mourinho in there mate….he only brings his magic wallet out as a last resort….last time there were three previously thought extinct species of moth found in its vicinity!” laughed the Arab.
Just before he got out close to the Penyfan View unmanned Police Station he handed the Taxi Driver a note.
“ His wife gave us this sticker with his address on as she knows what state he gets into when we end up paying for his beer!” said Trump.
It read ‘Lost- if Found please return to 96 High Street, Merthyr Tydfil CF47 8UD’
Unsure as to the location, he tapped it into his sat nav.
It was a genuine address.
As the pair disappeared into the night, Bobby took another glance in the rear view mirror.
The Mexican was still out for the count but he was no longer snoring or grunting.
Best get him home quick thought Bobby.
It’s His Wife’s problem then.
It was only a five minute ride from the Gurnos over the pot holes and uneven tarmac bumps of Brecon Road.
Reaching Pontmorlais the sat –navigation set to the voice of McCauley Culkin announced
‘You are now Home Alone!”
The street was silent and all he could see was a boarded up smashed window of a Lady’s Fashion shop of Manettes.
There was nothing else but Bobby assumed that there must be a first floor flat with access around the back.
“ Right then Zapata…that’ll be £80.00!” asked Bobby.
There was no response.
He repeated his demand.
His solitary passenger was silent.
He came around the back of the cab and opened the door that had been supporting the weight of the Mexican.
The sombrero covering his face fell off to see a white visage devoid of features.
He thought at first he had picked up Sophie Ellis- Bextor’s brother.
He reached inside the pocket of his ‘model’ passenger and found the square lump not to contain a wallet or money but a book entitled ‘Taxi Driving for Dummies!”
Not grasping the significance at first of the publication he subsequently flew into a rage.
“ That’s not a Fare Trade!” he screamed into the night.

updated by @philip-evans: 11/24/19 06:16:51PM
Philip evans
02/12/16 11:58:37PM
31 posts

The Big One

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2014

The Big One

His mouth was dry with anticipation.

His palms were covered in sweat.

He was not sure if it was the intense heat of San Francisco in July, or the prospect for him that this was a crucial life changing moment.

What if his first love, Sally Twp was no longer that sweet innocent girl, that he had declared his undying love for 40 years ago, when he was just ten years of age.

People change once they leave Wales he thought.

Twm was a Neath boy back then, knee high to a grasshopper, when he had stolen that first ever kiss from his Sally.

They had been out sliding down the disused coal tips together and they were blacker than the darkest night. They both knew they would be in trouble when they got home, but they had enjoyed a complete Summer’s day in the innocent company of one another and a kiss just seemed to be the perfect way to round it off. For the rest of that long and unusually hot Spring , then Summer of 1976, they had spent the six week school holidays together playing swallows and amazons , picking native wild flowers and sending Pooh sticks down the River Neath, as they idled those splendid care free days away.

Where had those innocent times gone….? Twm mused, as his adult world had been tainted by redundancy, divorce and house repossession.

But in a World devoid of light , he had chanced upon the Americymru website and re-established contact with his first love Sally, after nearly four decades when her parents had left the Principality in search of a better life in the ‘Golden State’.

By e-mail and forum, he had become reacquainted with Sally when he spotted her photograph icon.

He was astonished how little she had changed, given the length of time that had passed.

She looked as if she had worn much better than him- although most women do mature better than men- she looked as if she hadn’t aged a bit nor had a single grey hair on her head.

He assumed it was down to the effects of the Californian sun on her skin, whilst all he had was rain, osteoporosis and rheumatism to look forward to - if he stayed in the wet windy Valley climate.

True,- he would miss the four seasons- but hey he could always watch Frankie Valli in Vegas!!!.

As he passed the shops, busily opening up in the picturesque Harbor Way, his nostrils caught a familiar smell on the sea breeze.

Home-made bread from one of the little bakeries on the seafront, overlooking the glistening blue waters of San Francisco Bay.

He knew he only had to round this corner to the pre-arranged meeting place and his life could change forever. His mind raced .

What about the possibility she might not show?

Surely not-the Sally he knew.

The Sally he remembered would never let him down.

She wouldn’t ‘stand up’ a man who had flown ten hours , one third the way across the entire World would she? For the first time in a week, a dark doubt began to creep into his spirit like an evil shadow.

As he rounded the corner of the Harbour-side market, he could hear the voice of Bill Withers inside his head singing about San Francisco Bay and Soul Shadows.

Was his lack of confidence borne out of his recent separation?

His initial pause was met by a reassuring pat on the breast of his jacket pocket, onto the small red diary bearing the impressed date 1976 in gold letters.

It had originally belonged to his brother and was a free gift with the former War Comic ‘The Victor’.

It had been a lucky charm to Twm over the years and went everywhere with him being kept as close to his heart as possible.

Inside it was a pressed flower- a sweet narcissus emblem -the National flower of Wales handed to him by his childhood beau just before their first kiss.

He took it as a sign from the Welsh God (or Barry John as Twm preferred to call him colloquially), that his fate was entwined with that of Sally , as most of the other members of that progressive website ‘Americymru’ save as to its creative genius Ceri ‘Edison’ Shaw were represented by photograph ‘daffodil heads’.

Most preferred anonymity, but some were just technophobic and unable to ‘upload’ an image shot to their profile page.

In a way this was fortunate for Twm, as in amongst the cyber ‘flower patch’, Twm had spotted the beautiful face of Sally.

It was unmistakeable- a face he had seen on many occasions in his dreams and occasionally when he had been ‘on the job’ with his ex- missus.

Twm could remember in fine detail every one of her laughter lines, the way her cleft pallet curled slightly like Elvis Presley in the film ‘Blue Hawaii’ when she greeted him.

They say love is blind and beauty only skin deep but to Twm , on Earth Sally had no equal- his vision of her loveliness could not be stained- his fantasy version of his first love could not be spoiled in his mind’s eye. Another few steps and his ‘Aphrodite’ would be revealed in all her true glory.

He was however, astounded to see that the 2014 version of little Sally Twp was no longer that he had worshipped from afar.

She was no longer little or Twp.

She had more ‘Chins’ than the San Francisco Chinatown Directory.

It was almost as if she had been assimilated into another person.

A thin woman trying to get out of a fat suit.

“ Hi Y’all you look great….just as I remembered you!” replied Sally plus two.

The sound seemed to be trapped in the echo of her vibrating five jowls.

Like Jabba the Hutt with a turkey wattle.

Twm was horrified and at that moment would have preferred a version of distorted reality that Sally was being eaten by the ‘Blob’ from Outer Space in a 1950’s Californian film flick.

“ Sally…you look….. Gorge- us….truly …American…!” was all Twm could manage to spout.

“ Come and sit beside me on this bench!” requested Sally patting the wooden bench already bowing from her body mass.

Twm’s body had benefitted from his recent divorce, in that he had lost over four stone and had been working out in the gym as he was now ‘back on the market’ again.

He was used to bench presses of a different kind.

Not to invade her personal space, he sat away from Sally towards the other end of the bench.

“ What’s the matter ?” asked Sally “ The Twm Sion Catty I remember wasn’t shy…you haven’t still got a chip on your shoulder over me leaving you behind in the Old Country?”

“ I told you before that was my parents decision not mine…I hope you can forgive me? “ asked Sally sensing that something had changed in her relationship with Twm.

As she asked the question , she put her full weight on her side of the bench tilting it into the air sending Twm tumbling towards her landing in her cushioned ‘bouncy castle’ side .

“ I don’t have a chip on my shoulder…. but you do have a couple stored in your neck fold!” replied Twm looking closer at the supersize model.

“ Wrong fold !” said Twm as Sally tried in vain to reach the ‘fries’.

It was not in her psyche to waste food.

Twm looked deeply into the eyes of Sally as she munched on the chipsticks -like a cow chewing the cud. He could see staring back at him those same beautiful brown eyes that had appeared in his dreams over the last few decades.

It was hard though to concentrate on her eyes, as her jowl and chins were working harder than the silent wheels of the former Neath colliery.

“ So are you and ‘Cheese Burger Sally here an item?” interrupted a Mexican sounding American voice.
Twm turned towards the sound .

Like St Peter in the Garden of Gethsemane to deny the accusation three times.

“ No…No ..No…we are just good friends!” Twm replied somewhat ashamed to be sitting on the same bench as the ‘Incredible Bulk’.

“ But…stuttered Sally…I thought you declared you undying love for me on Americymru…I have the posting saved close to my heart!” .

Sally reached into her blouse passed more rolls than the Harbor Way bakery had in stock.

She produced a single sheet of paper partly soaked in sweat but was also stained in hamburger grease.

“ I thought you e-mailed to say we would be married one day ?” sobbed the shocked Sally .

“ Well your photo on Americymru is very misleading…back home in Wales …we have Trading Standards Departments checking out for misrepresentations like this and programmes like X-Ray and the Ferret!” said Twm.

The Mexican Viv Zapata was embarrassed by the argument he so innocently started.

“ Sally is our best customer …. - a lovely woman …. I accept she is larger than life but compared to most American women she is only a medium….show him your tent-tag Sal!” suggested Viv.

Sally’s face dropped and a Mexican wave of chins followed it towards the floor.

Her beautiful eyes welled up and suddenly burst into tears.

Twm suddenly felt a different kind of shame.

He had made a woman cry.

He put his arm around as much of Sally as he could manage and tried to comfort her.

“ I had big plans to show you around my adopted city….and now they are in ruins !” she sobbed.

“ Sally…you must admit it is a big shock for you to see me after all these will take time for us to be reacquainted again…we are different people to those ghostly children we back were then in the ‘Summer of Love’” replied Twm feeling guilty.

Finally, Twm could stand her crying no longer.

“ Look… I kept this…!” he said reaching into his diary withdrawing a yellow flower that had kept neatly dried and pressed for over 40 years.

“ The daffodil.. not only the National symbol of Wales but a symbol of my love for Little Sally Twp!” said Twm trying to comfort Sally.

“ Little Sally Twp no longer exists!” said Sally.

“ But there is a lot more of me to love!” she said cheering up.

“ Every heard the American expression of ‘ Don’t start pushin’ till you find yourself a cushion?” asked Sally.
“ Sorry …that one passed me by!” replied Twm.

“ Never mind…we’ll take it slowly then!” said Sally throwing her huge arms around Twm’s neck .

“ I’m loving it!” she said in tune with the McDonalds jingle, as both of her bingo wings slapped Twm in the face simultaneously.

Twm’s only thoughts were that of oxygen and self preservation.

Gasping for air, he broke the flabby stranglehold as the USA equivalent of Shirley Crabtree mercifully released her grip.

She began kissing Twm all over in relief.

Twm’s face went red but Viv Zapata could not make out if the cause was embarrassment or a stubble rash reaction.

She then stood and dragged Twm with her, as if sucked into her orbit and began cracking the sidewalk of Harbor Way as she went.

Viv Zapata stood there in astonishment.

He had never seen Sally so happy even in ‘happy hour’ eating a half dozen happy meals.

He wondered whether he should have warned Twm about her dark secret.

“ Oh well !” sighed Viv.

“ He will find out soon enough!” he said making his way towards the Golden M.

The taxi stopped at Pier 39 on the San Francisco sea front. Sally paid the driver and struggled her way out of the exit doors.

She said proudly in a Shirley Bassey voice ‘This is My Town!” to Twm.

As Twm made his way towards the boardwalk , Sally grabbed him by the arm.

“ Sorry Twm…I can’t take you on there … I am banned!” said Sally.

Twm assumed because it was a somewhat rickety structure there may be a weight limit. He didn’t want to end up underneath to the strains of a Bruce Willis song.

“ I can’t go to the Forrest Gump Bubba Shrimp themed restaurant- I’m the only person ever to be barred- they held an all you can eat night and I almost bankrupted the place single handed!” sighed Sally.

“ But there are plenty of other places we can eat here!” she said …” But first some exercise - I want to take on one of the famous ‘Green Line’ San Francisco cable cars as Sally stopped traffic as she waddled across three lanes of traffic.

Most drivers didn’t realise she was ‘jaywalking’- an offence in America-they thought she was a comedy roundabout for the tourists.

As they got on the conductor-less carriage- the rest of the passengers sat wide eyed or chose to get off. As the trolley-car car bumped its way up ‘Rue De Clint Eastwood’ – the flattest street in the City Sally turned to her Welsh boyfriend and sighed seductively.

“ A street car named desire?” she said to Twm.

Most of the passengers struggled to keep their lunches down.

A fact that angered Twm – suddenly the Californian World he had longed for – seemed so superficial- full of ‘Shallow Hals’ – people who could not see past Sally’s size.

Some were genuine however- because they had missed their stop .

But others were hung up on the brainwashing of the fashion world that for a girl to be attractive she had to be a size zero.

As the Streetcar made its way through the lower streets – Sally pointed out the sights to her tourist Taffy.

“ There is Wendy’s Homebake where I get my first breakfast of the day …there is McDonalds where I get my brunch…KFC where I get my dinner…Pizza Hut where I get my Dea…!” said Sally.

“ Dea…what’s Dea?” asked Twm confused.

“ In America we like to have a meal between Dinner and Tea…..don’t you have it back home in the Old Country?” questioned Sally.

“ No… I Wales we only have two meals a day … fags for breakfast and Rhymney Brewery beer for Supper…unless the food banks are open that is…we have precious little disposable income after you take out the fuel hikes and the cost of Rugby International tickets! “ said Twm.

The car rumbled on, as it passed 608 Bush Street which had a plaque proudly displaying the fact Treasure Island writer , Robert Louis Stevenson had lodged there.

Sally didn’t care. She was too busy looking at the mouth watering treats on display in the Oriental shop windows of San Francisco’s China Town.

Twm was starting to feel ‘Kidnapped’ himself as his new companion turned ‘Jekyll & Hyde’ as they drive past food stores to the cries of “ Don’t you just love Chinese food?”

“ 20 Number 6 tipped for me!” said smoker Twm.

As the incline increased on the Rue De Karl Malden , the Trolley bus started to spark from the rear as the weight of the Californian Welsh girl took its toll.

As it reached Rue De Michael Douglas, it was positively on fire as the metal wheels threatened to buckle. Luckily for Sally & Twm they had reached their destination.

They stood above the most beautiful setting in San Francisco- that of the flowered zig- zag hill shown in most Hollywood movies- Lombard Street.

Twm on descending from the trolley reached in to take the hand of his beau. The remainder of the passengers were certain they heard the Trolley Bus actually let out a gasp. Twm decided to show that he was true Welsh romantic and plucked a flower from the beautiful display on show. He didn’t have a romantic bone in his body but he still had a few romantic muscles left. Sally was shocked.

“ Is that for me?” she blubbered.

Twm went down on one knee. He didn’t care anymore about her body weight. He was more interested in the way to her enlarged heart ….oh and of course the small matter of a Green Card and US citizen-ship . If she would agree to marry him -he might get a Kevin Spacey welcome to the USA from the Passport Border Control Guards.

“ Sally, will you marry me?” asked the Welshman.

It was more than Sally could take.It was either the shock of the proposal or the fact she hadn’t eaten for two hours but whatever the cause….Sally fainted. The Californian public love a good Hollywood ending but they didn’t get it as Sally was on a roll. Down the zigzag of Lombard Street that is…like a demented rolling Weeble crushing everything in her unconscious path. Schoolchildren leapt out of the way of certain death, as Sally thundered down the street picking up speed and litter as she went. Twm tried to run after her, chest wheezing like an accordion as he frantically leapt the flowered covered hedges like a grand National Horse in an effort to stop his love from hitting San Francisco Bay. He knew with her ‘dinghy like inflatable qualities and inevitable offshore rip tide she would be near Alcatraz Island Penitentiary in minutes. He had lost his Sally forty years ago.. he did not intend losing her again.

Twm dived like Sam Warburton after his bit of ‘crumpet’ but only succeeded in slowing down the human ball as it hit the Main Street. Luckily, for Sally she hit a passing Greyhound Coach with her face. The passengers and shop owners thought it was the Big One- the promised Californian Earthquake – the successor to the 1906 disaster caused by the Pacific and North American land masses colliding under one another. This time it was not San Andreas fault but Twm’s.

There was a different kind of plate techtonics at work .The years of overeating and the American ‘dream’ lifestyle caused by inactivity and food advertising 24/7 had taken its toll on poor Sally. Even her right leg weighed more than Toby Faletau. Twm reached the unconscious figure and immediately tried to check if there was a pulse. His hand disappeared and his watch came off and was lost in a sea of flab. He put his ear to her chest and could hear a heart beating. It reminded him of the end scene of the Peter Jackson film ‘King Kong’.

His love was still alive!

He placed the Lombard Street flowers in the hair of his child of the sixties and Sally came round and smiled at him. Twm burst into tears for the first time since he witnessed a different Grand Slam in 2008. As Sally came around the bus cheered loudly and applauded spontaneously in a way only Americans can at a tickertape parade. Sally’s ticker was okay as she looked up longingly at the blurred face of Twm.

“ Yes …Brad Pitt I will marry you!” she said through her concussion.

“ But first if we are to be married I must tell you about my past!”

“ I have spent a five stretch in San Quentin when I accidently killed by first husband whilst on a drinking binge!” said Sally.

Twm’s eyes widened he knew in America it was ‘three strikes and out’. In Neath- the Colliery was even more militant.

“ How did it happen?” asked Twm.

“ I had been on a bender and rolled over in our bed and crushed the poor man….he suffocated….but at least he went in his sleep…!” said Sally.

“ I was charged with homicider!” she continued.

There was a minutes silence while Twm absorbed the full extent of the news. Sally was worried that her necessary confession had lost her love for the second time. Suddenly, Twm burst into life.

“ Separate beds it is then!” said the pragmatic Twm.

It didn’t matter to him that his future wife wasn’t skinny…he didn’t care …she was beautiful… he already knew she had a face that could stop traffic . Twm had lost his heart in San Francisco.

updated by @philip-evans: 02/12/16 11:58:55PM
Philip evans
01/28/16 09:59:50PM
31 posts

A Knight at the Museum - by Philip Evans

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2015

“Good night and good luck!” said the Curator Derek Dunny as he locked the huge wooden front door of the Cyfarthfa Castle Museum.

The only Grade 1 Listed Structure in the whole of the Merthyr Tydfil Borough was imposing looking at the best of times, but on a dark wet Winter’s evening it was downright scary. Safer Merthyr employee Dicky Knight looked around nervously. It was his first night as a security guard and he didn’t feel very safe.

“Everything looks so much more scary in the dark!” he said to his shadow, who was his only companion for the night. Merthyr Council too had to comply with Central Government Budget cuts and were warned that they had to make savings, which is why they employed a youngster on the National Minimum wage to guard their museum, lit at night by solar powered lights.

This wouldn’t have been a problem anywhere else, but as most Merthyr people will confirm, we don’t get sunlight for six months of the year. Knight looked around him dimly, the old stuffed animal heads on the walls seemed to glower at him menacingly and the suits of armour looked ready to follow him as soon as he turned his back. His first ever night shift was going to be a long one. He sat down at the counter on a chair, with just a Pound shop flash light with a Polish battery in it for comfort. His senses were on high alert for every sound or movement as his imagination ran riot. The swirling high wind and driving rain outside didn’t help matters either .He had a mobile phone but he only had 20p of credit left on it – just enough to text HELP to his girlfriend – if he needed to.

In the half-light he carefully unwrapped his silver foil package peering in to see what sandwiches his mother had packed for him -hoping in anticipation for salmon. All he had was cheese- with bread so hard it could have been from Swansea Road. Bored silly after just ten minutes, he began to throw peanuts into the air and catch them in his mouth. He began to throw them higher and higher until one lodged in his left nasal chamber and he nearly choked to death.  sighed to himself as he checked his watch with the flash light 6.40pm....ten minutes gone only another 11 hours and 20 minutes to go. He knew he had to do something so he decided to pluck up enough courage to patrol the place.

After checking the entrance door was locked firmly, he made his way into the art gallery section filled with furniture not good enough for St Fagan’s Museum of Welsh Life. As he walked in, all the portraits on the walls seemed to looking at him. In his mind’s eye, Dicky could see the eyes moving behind the oak panel wall partitions and Frans Hals ‘Cavalier’ seemed to be laughing at him.

“I don’t know what you are laughing about....because the Roundheads kicked your arse pal!” he said aloud to the oil painting.

Dicky almost expected him to answer but no reply came. Dicky had heard wives’ tales for years of the Castle being haunted ...but apart from his teachers at the school, he never saw any monsters. Passing along the Crawshay dynasty, he refrained from spitting in the face of the Ironmasters who had abused the Town and its poor people. He looked around him at Lady Charlotte Guest, translating the Mabinogion into English and realised he was in a place of priceless historical importance to the people of Merthyr. Even so, he didn’t care...he just lit up his little roll-up fag and blew out a smoke ring onto the face of Richard Trevithick.

“Narrow Gauge ...he puffed closing his mouth... Broad Gauge!” he said opening the aperture.

As he grew more confident in his explorations, his stomach started to roll so he decided he would have a sniff around the cafeteria area known as ‘Crawshay’s Truck Shop’ and see if there were any freebies on offer. As he entered the dark underground area , he was disappointed to see that everything was shuttered down and locked up for the night. There was however, a single vending unit sponsored by Diet Coke, containing various chocolate bars , crisps and full sugar cans of coke to encourage healthy eating in the Borough. Dicky didn’t have any coins anyway , but he certainly wasn’t prepared to spend £1.00 for a Mars Bar in any event. He bent down, opened the metal flap and tried lifting his remaining hand up to flick the goods off their metal shelves. The machine was designed to stop this sort of petty pilfering. Bored further he decided to use the toilet. Sitting in peace he relaxed as he sent two beautiful ‘corn dogs’ down the River Taff. Dicky’s peace was shattered, when he looked across and realised that the Council cutbacks included toilet paper too. No the brand his Mam and Dad had ‘pampered’ him with at home.

“Shit!” he cursed aloud . He suddenly had a thought. “What about those velvet drapes in the portrait room?” Walking with his trousers around his ankles, he shuffled along like a penguin until he reached the room with the soft curtains.  careful to use the inside of the green and brown velvet, he noticed that they were beginning to stick to the wall near the window reveal.

“Shit happens!” he said as he raised his trousers and adjusted his clothing.

And then it hit him. Looking through the doorway, directly at him was a small Egyptian Death Mask of King Tutankhamen, in a small glass display case. It wasn’t the pharaoh that caught his eye but the rod of Osiris next to him. It was perfect to knock off a mars bar from the machine. He made his way to the cabinet and was dejected initially to find it locked.

“Now where would a Merthyr curator hide the key?” he said aloud.

Spying a plant pot, alongside the entrance door he went and checked and bingo there it was.

“Safer Merthyr....that’s training for you!” he said as he flicked the key high in the air, being careful not to throw it high enough to lodge in his nose. As he opened the cabinet, he grabbed the rod of Osiris and made his way back to the cafeteria. He returned minutes later with armfuls of chocolate, three bags of crisps and a can of coke, smiling inanely as he carried the magic rod in his teeth. Putting down his ill-gotten gains, he returned the rod to its place in the cabinet. As he did so, he noticed a cutting about the curse of King Tut and the mysterious death of museum benefactor Lord Caernarvon.

“I‘m not Brendan Fraser ...he said “ the only mummy I’m afraid of is my own!”

He placed the death mask on his face for a second and a few bits of wrist jewellery as a costume and ‘Walked like an Egyptian’ with the ‘bangles’ on. He then foolishly picked up the book entitled ‘Necropolis’ and began to decipher the hierographics. As his dad was a former postman , he had no difficulty in reading the writing out loud. As he finished the last sentence, he heard a dog howl in the distance. Like his father, he too had an innate fear of dogs and that sound was not unlike the sound Lord Caernarvon had heard seconds before his dog dropped dead at the exact time, when Howard Carter opened that tomb, in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt.

“Anubis...the Jackal Headed God!” said Dicky....”Guardian of the underworld!” he said reading the papyrus parchment scroll aloud, which crumbled to dust as he spoke.

“Where are those drapes again?”

As he made his way to the window overlooking the rear of the castle, two likely lads were digging in the woods behind the castle, looking for the money that a local drug dealer had allegedly buried there.The Gurnos pair of Mac Head and his brother ‘H’ were digging away, trying to find the buried loot. Sudden movement in the window above was noticed by the pair. The movement was the bare arse of Dicky , reflecting the moonlight , as he used the velvet curtains for a purpose not originally intended. Mac picked up a stone and launched it expertly at the aperture. It sailed through the gap in the sash window and landed on the table containing a priceless vase from the Ming Dynasty. It teetered on the table edge tantalisingly for a second, as Dicky lunged like Edwin Van Der Saar full stretch to catch it, in doing so knocking over a Bronze age cup –the only one left in existence- found by Tony Robinson and the Time Team in Swansea Road- as proof that civilised man HAD once lived in Gellideg.

The vase fell all the same and shattered into a thousand pieces.“ I want my mummy!” said Dicky sucking his thumb for a split second , until he realised it wasn’t just the drapes that were humming. When Dicky opened his eyes he was hoping it was all just a ‘nightmare’. But he could see the two teenage drug dealers making their way home with their ill gotten gains on the back of a black horse. More disconcerting to Dicky was that he could see a small bulldog looking at him slobbering away, with ectoplasm dripping from his mouth.

“What the Hell are you....Anubis?” stuttered Dicky.

Beyond the dog in the entrance hall Dicky could hear strange guttural noises – um chukka....

Dicky backed away from the dog eventually circling the wall and running towards the strange sound. Dicky stopped ‘dead’ in his tracks, as he witnessed a strange bearded man step down off the canvas of Rolf Harris. He was all in white, like an outline of a person and was almost transparent.

“What are you...?” stuttered Dicky... as the trickle down the back of his leg began to fill his white socks too.

“Can’t you tell what it is yet?” asked the spectre .

Dicky stood white as a sheet (bar for his socks) shaking his head in terror.“ Are you a Rolftergeist?” he eventually stammered.

“I won’t harm you....different to him...he said nodding at the dog....he could put you in ‘Animal Hospital’ if I was to say the word!”

“What word?” asked Dicky.“

Churchill.....he’s my spirit guide...helping the recently bereaved to find their way in the afterlife....a ‘loss adjuster’ if you like ....oh and by the way .... that vase wasn’t me....for insurance purposes....he nodded at the dog....I don’t want to lose my no claims was them out there....those ‘Two little boys’ on their ‘wooded horses’. said the ghost.

“Do you think I should go after them?” asked Dicky pretending he was brave.

“So let me AsBO’s go...son.....!” sung Rolf...singing to the tune of Tie me Kangaroo down sport .

“That’s the trouble in Merthyr ...said Dicky....I haven’t made the place any safer...I had my car wheel trims pinched from this very castle forecourt...and the GTI sport ones cost a fortune....thank God my father gets money in the mail regularly...!” said Dicky growing more confident.

“I know what you mean cobber....lot of ‘poor little blighters’ in the town...they’ll steal anything in Merthyr from scrap metal signs to shitty drapes ( Dicky blushed red at this point)...I even had to tie my kangaroo down sport to stop it being taken from the Park!!! So what are you doing here so late at night Sport?” asked the phantom.

“Having a little ‘Walkabout’ like you really!” said Dicky. “How come you live in that painting?” he asked not so scared now- safe in the knowledge that the dead wouldn’t hurt him.

“Every artist leaves a little bit of their soul behind in their as a fellow arsetist chose to leave your impression on a different material- the drapes...for example!” said Rolf.

“But one thing I don’t understand....I know your career is dead...but I didn’t know you had gone to ‘Dreamstate’!” said Dicky.

“Neither did I until about ten minutes ago!”.......I was stood before the Queen ...she had previously given me the CBE & MBE honours....before she saw my 80th birthday painting of her....she said I was to be made Sir Rolf....for my services to animals and art and anoraks sales ...but then the flunky, told her that David Cameron had rung first, then Nick Clegg second and they had told her that the Royal Family were not immune to the public sector cuts.....then she went all ‘Helen Mirren’ on me.... and the next minute I’m ‘condem’ned to talking like Anne Boleyn.... !” said Rolf putting his head underneath his arm.“ Now I’m looking for a Stairway to Heaven!”

“Stairway to Cefn...I can help you with ...but not that best follow Churchill.....!” said Dicky.

No sooner had Rolf uttered the ‘immortal’ line then the sun came up behind the shitty drapes. “Sun Arise!” wailed Rolf as he headed for the light. As he did so, the front door was opened by the returning curator.

“Enjoy your work experience?” he asked hopefully.

“I quit mate....once a Queen always a Queen...but once a Knight’s enough Rolf Harris head....I’m off!” said Dicky tucking in his chocolate bars.

The curator looked at him somewhat bemused and shut the door behind him.

updated by @philip-evans: 01/28/16 10:00:14PM
Philip evans
01/28/16 09:58:09PM
31 posts

A Bit ON Tom Jones by Philip Evans

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2015

The crowd began to hush each other, as the announcer took the microphone. Compere Black Eyed Pete stood waiting for the hall to be completely silent, before he would introduce the Special Guests that he had lined up for the special Charity night at Merthyr Tydfil Labour Club. Pete owned this stage. He was smartly dressed in a suit complete with gold pocket-watch and a much better tan than Cardiff City. He had mascara around his eyes, as he peered out like a panda at the packed hall.

Pete was the second generation of his family to have ruled the Club with his commanding stage presence. This ‘Labour of Love’ was not carried out for money, it was another demonstration of his caring nature- he was again showing he had a ‘Big Heart’ and wanted to put his home town of Merthyr Tydfil back on the map. Black- eyed Pete had recently appeared on the Television show – ‘Deep Throat’ where he had demonstrated his talent live to the Nation and in the process had made a few celebrity friends as contacts in the showbiz World. Pete had already appeared in a promotional video called the ‘Vampire of Merthyr’, where he had illustrated that the multinational monopoly stores were sucking the life blood out of the Big Heart of the Town leaving behind boarded up shops and tumbleweeds blowing around where once local businesses had thrived.

He was no stranger to fame and certainly no shrinking violet- his You-tube Video alone had had more hits than a battered wife in the Gurnos or a ‘bus-spotting’ heroin addict put together. He was featured white faced in Gothic costume, drinking a pint from the Queen Camilla Hospital Blood Bank, as he hung upside from a tree branch by his legs. His little stunt almost made into in the tabloid newspapers – which would have been a great reflection on the Town but due to a printing error and being a vampire no one could see him in the ‘Mirror’.

Like Dracula though, the Compere knew there was a ‘sucker’ born every minute, and tonight over 300 punters had paid £25.00 each for a show that would benefit a local charity and more importantly gave him the opportunity to raise his profile and share a stage with some of the World’s finest entertainers. That would be priceless on his C V. But Pete was no Madonna- he was no Material Girl. His pleasure came from the thrill of entertaining- a buzz feedback from his adoring public and not just the screeching sound from his microphone when he turned it on to announce his principal guest.

“ Ladies, Gentleman & crack addicts- let’s have a rousing Merthyr Tydfil welcome … live on stage at Merthyr Labour Club is no other than that Ponty boy made good- TOMMMMM JONES!”  boomed Pete, as the curtain was pulled back revealing the former ‘Sex Bomb’ who now looked more like a wrinkled hand grenade.

Tom looked at the curtain and had a feeling of ‘deja vue’. It was not just the surroundings either, as the velvet curtain was the very one Tommy Cooper had died behind years ago at the Her Majesty’s Theatre Performance . It was no longer capable of being billed as ‘Live at Her Majesty’s’ and was bought on e-bay by one of the Committee Men looking to save a couple of quid…he had to be quick as he was told it would go ‘Just like that!’.

Tom looked around the audience expectantly and was dumb struck.He had in nearly 60 years of performing never suffered from stage fright, in playing to audience on both sides of the Pond, Las Vegas shows and Royal Command Performances. He couldn’t understand, as he opened his mouth but no words would come out. True, the audience was exceptionally ugly, but there was something more deep-rooted in his psyche. He remembered then in 1963 , when he was ‘a boy from nowhere’ that he had been told by the then Entertainment Secretary Trevor, not to bother going on the stage for the second half, as he couldn’t sing and the crowd didn’t like him. His parting shot was that ‘he would never make it’. How accurate was that call …after 20 million record sales World-wide and a millionaire seventy five times over, the club official was made to eat humble pie. But the cheekly little bastard that had ‘paid him off ‘was still sat in the front row expecting an autograph.

For what seemed like an eternity to the audience, but which was merely seconds to the traumatised performer, you could hear a pin drop. Black eyed Pete didn’t know whether to intervene and save his superstar from embarrassment- but he was too scared – this WAS Tom Jones after all- not a small time Valleys entertainer.

For two whole minutes, Tom stood in front of the audience- mouth wide open but unable to form any words or force a sound out from his voice box.And then 80 year old committee man Trevor Quiff spoke.“ Come on Cauliflower Head….let’s see if you have improved since 1963!”

Tom was very touchy about his hair which had received various ‘Rooney’ treatments over the ears but was now a tight white kinky afro. The jibe spurred Tom out of his self –imposed musical coma and he finally found his voice.“ Well …that was my tribute to Simon & Garfunkel’s the Sound of Silence!” he quipped regaining his composure.The Merthyr audience were too dull to appreciate the joke. But at least Tom’s larynx was working in Merthyr again even if very few of the audience were.

“This is a song called a Boy from Nowhere!” said the former Ponty boy.“

"That’s impossible …you can’t be from Nowhere!” heckled Trevor.“ You are from Pontypridd….you fat get…the Full Pontynow…look at you swanning back into Wales after all those years a tax exile in California….you have got a cheek to call yourself Welsh!” barked Trevor.

Tom could feel his throat closing but in his mind’s eye wished it was Trevor’s. He had a mental vision of his Sunkist Californian orange hands around his neck….treating him to a different squash. The multimillionaire swore then that we he got back to Las Vegas and the Mob, he would get a hit put out on this old buzzard that had now embarrassed him twice in one lifetime.

“Treforest Plump….they ought to call you…your life has been like ‘a box of chocolates’ but us in the Valleys have seen tough times…the closure of the steel works, then the pits, then Hoovers and now our Town Centre is dying!” said Trevor.“ You could buy this Town and put it right…but what do you do…come here Lording over us like you own the place….I suppose you even expect an appearance fee for tonight..?” said Trevor.

Tom made eyes at Black eyed Pete as if to stay quiet.Trevor was already on it.

“Charity….there is no such thing as charity ….if you and the likes of Gary Barlow and co paid your fair share of tax based on your income this Island might be called ‘GREAT’ Britain again and not just known as Wails….so TAKE THAT!” said the old git.

Tom despite his 6 feet frame felt he was shrinking. He could respond in the only way he knew how- musically.

“Hit it!” said Tom to his invisible silent orchestra…Gary Oke. Black eyed Pete put the 45 rpm single on the record player and Tom began to do a ‘Milli Vanilli’ and mime to one of his old records.The Young New Mexican Puppeteer had never been performed so crackily before.

“I have never heard it sung that scratchily before!” said one audience member.

“It must be because of all those wrinkles…you have seen the way Yoda talks!” replied her friend.

“I told you that OBE stood for Old Bald ‘Ed!” shoutedTrevor as the record wound down.

“Leave him alone!” said a 70 year old woman with a 1960’s Beehive last seen in the Rosie Royals Café in Pontmorlais.

It was Tom Jones number 1 Fan and secretary of his World Wide Web fanny club, Eira Gwyn from Norfolk.She loved Tom with a passion that could only be equalled by Miss World contestants. Black Eyed Pete had found another more modern compact disc this time, the cover version of the Prince Song ‘Kiss’ from the early 1990’s.This was more of a challenge to the Voiceless star of the ‘Voice’ , as he would have to pretend to be the squeaky-voiced singer who’s voice was so high he could make ‘Dove’s Cry’. Tom tightened his trouser belt even more to compensate and the Front Row had a clear view of his ‘Full Monty’ meat and two veg.

This sent Eira wild , as the music started up from the I-phone of Black Eyed Pete who had routed it through the speakers.

“I think I’d better dance now!” said the Real Tom Jones, as the elderly women in the audience started to cover their idol in underwear.

In the 1960’s Hippy era, Tom had flower powered knickers everywhere, in the 1970’s it was still the Good Life but the panties became smaller, by the 1980’s they were miniscule and the 1990’s saw Tom being showered by Thora Hird and her ‘Thongs of Praise’….as the audience got older in the Naughty Noughties and into the turn of the Millenium the knickers started getting bigger again, as middle age spread took over, some of the underwear were marginally smaller than Chipperfield’s Circus Big Top and culminating in the ones thrown at him today which would have had taken out a smaller man off the stage.

Tom also had to duck, as lots of Room Keys to the Five star hotels of Merthyr - the Tregenna and the Castle Hotel rained down followed by the keys to Elwyn Morgan’s the ‘Dorchester’ on Brecon Road.

Eira Gwyn, or Snow White as she was to Tom, was always immaculate but to some of the locals in the audience from Merthyr, laundry was an expense they had decided to cut back on in favour of bingo, cigarettes and alcohol .One massive pair of grey knickers hit Tom right on his cauliflower patch and as he snatched the revolting pair off his head, he left behind a love memento from one of his Valley ‘Commando’ admirers.“

What is it about oral sex in Tesco Car park that always makes me want to shit!” said one committed Jones fan.

She stroked her varicose veined leg as she looked up at her ‘Sex Bomb’. It was all Tom could do not to vomit on the front row. He stood there oblivious to the fact that a small part brown part grey turd was lodged in his fake grey thatched roof. As Tom was such a big star, not even Black Eyed Pete could bring himself to tell him he had a Log on his bonce. If he didn’t want to be blacklisted from every entertainment venue in the World (again) he would have quipped “ Tom… you can leave your SHAT on!” But there would be Hell toupee if Tom found out and Pete would as organiser, would more than likely get the Californian law suit rather than the velvet one Tom had lent him for the evening.

“Shit.. Tom!” cried Trevor never one to pander to reputation….pointing at Tom’s head.On this occasion Trevor was trying to be helpful. Tom glared back at the old man before misinterpreting the comment and diving in an uncontrollable rage for his fellow pensioner – the one that had haunted his nightmares for many a year.Trevor realised he would never get an autograph now and decided to abuse the star in a way only a Club Entertainments Secretary could.

“And you’re a poultry thief…you stole a chicken from the Fochrhiw Social Club raffle too in 1963 !” alleged Trevor rolling round in a Greco/Roman wrestling hold Tom had learned from Caesar’s Palace.

“They had to have a chicken dinner minus, the chicken and they are a poor lot over there in Fochrhiw!” protested Trevor.

Despite the scrap, the offending turd refused to budge, even as the pair grappled, the lacquer and thatch of Tom’s barnet held it in place.The pair rolled around the floor amid spilled beer and old crisp packets, as both combatant’s plastic hips screamed and strained– Tom’s from years of pelvic thrusting and stage gyrations and Trevor’s hips from years of racy dance moves including Foxtrots and Tangos in this very concert hall.

Tom was top dog for a while, managing to wrestle the ancient committee man onto his back, before Trevor would use an old Red Indian trick he had learned from all those old Western Films he watched on the TCM Channel by flipping his opponent over. Once or twice Trevor had managed to get his plastic comb out to scalp his celebrity rival, only to be thwarted by the super-strong superglue used to keep Tom’s Grey, Grey Grass of home intact. The other people in the hall would not step in to help, they knew by filming this struggle on their camera-phones they would change their lives, as our celebrity obsessed culture whether at Caesar’s Palace or otherwise still loved gladiatorial contents.

Trevor being a Merthyr Labour Club Committeeman for over 50 years had much more experience in stopping fights then Tom Jones who was more used to watching women fighting over him. True, most of the time it was one of his wives and his present conquest. At one stage it was so frequent , the Management at Caesar’s Palace, the Corleone family, installed a mud pit at the front of the stage and charged additional fees to watch.

The Trevor and Tom fight ended when after three successive bangs to the concrete floor, Tom’s hair came away in Trevor’s hand and the innocent turd that had caused the melee, shot out into the air and was caught by Eira Gwyn , who eagerly snapped up the souvenir for her collection of items once touched by her Valleys hero. Over the years, she had become the original pop stalker, years before Mark Chapman shot John Lennon, Eira had become obsessed with Mr Jones having taken chest hair, fingernail clippings and chewing gum over the years and of course her prized used condom which he had signed for her at the Top of the Pops studios.

‘To my Delilah with lots of love….Uncle Tom’.

This she kept in an airtight glass case, in the hope that one day medical science could help her father her own mini version of Tom when they found a cure for her barren ovaries.The turd would now keep the condom company.The Police were called because of the ‘Tomfoolery’ going on in the Hall, and a Police Officer bravely pushed the unpaid female Community Police Officer into the fray as the entire hall erupted and cousin fought cousin, breaking chairs and tables over heads and punches were thrown indiscriminately.

And the men were just as bad.

The Police officer was asked by the ambulance brigade what was going on as he waited outside for the hurricane to blow itself out.

“Tom Jones is in town!” he replied.

“Oh I see!” said the Ambulance Man.

“Friday Night….Labour Club….fighting…Tom Jones…it’s not unusual!”

updated by @philip-evans: 01/28/16 09:58:30PM
Philip evans
01/28/16 09:56:23PM
31 posts

Bjorn again Christian

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2015

Bjorn again ChristianEternal bachelor Bjorn Free felt a little out of place.He had only gone on this SAGA holiday cruise to appease his nagging step-sister Nora, who had suggested it might 'change his life'.He had at 67, finally retired from his teaching role after some 48 years in the 'blackboard jungle'and had been cajoled into taking a cruise of Scandanavia by his relative, even though all he wanted to do was have a well earned rest.Bjorn had lived for most his adult life in the little Welsh Valleys backwater town of Abercynon and been the local Primary School Headmaster for over 30 years.He was much respected in the Town and a regular at his local Sunday School Chapel - it was a place he had come to love and felt completely at home in, unlike today where he felt like a fish out of water.True, he was sat in a fold up green chair that he had purchased from 'Asda' in Merthyr Tydfil and was the only one dressed in an anorak and wellies, whilst everyone else was dressed in bikinis and swimsuits and sat around the upper deck swimming pool.Bjorn was deeply religious and didn't feel at all comfortable with the amount of flesh on display and assumed that as it was Early September he should pack and then dress accordingly.How was he to know that Britain and its near neighbours would experience an Indian Summer that some attributed to a shift in the patterns of the Gulf Stream.Perhaps the promised 'Global Warming' so threatened by World Scientists for over a decade had finally materialised.Bjorn was a passionate birdwatcher and had been persuaded by his Step-Sister Nora to take on this cruise of the Norwegian fjords, in the hope of being the first Briton to record on camera a photograph of the rarely spotted 'Norwegian Blue Parrot'.The 'twitcher' lived up to his own billing , as he too had a nervous tic, where his head would suddenly jerk of its own accord particularly when he talked to members of the opposite sex.This was part of the reason Bjorn had never married- the other reasons being his raging dandruff and extreme halitosis.Bjorn enjoyed his own company and felt more at home lying in a field covered in waterproof clothing, than he did sitting poolside watching young kids through his binoculars trying to surf on the on-board wave machine pool.Eventually, he was asked to move by the waiters , as he was unsettling the children's parents with his telephoto lens.Bjorn decided to head to the prow of the great ship 'The Norse Code' - a luxury liner - the first in the World to be built entirely out of Danish Lego bricks.Like all newly retired people, he had decided he must address the problem of not having a will.He once again had been persuaded to leave his not inconsiderable fortune to his younger step-sister Nora , in exchange for certain assurances that he would never be placed in a nursing home.As you can imagine, not having drunk, smoked or gambled all his adult life, Bjorn had amassed quite an amount of 'riches' , even if in realty these 'riches' were merely printed numbers on a bank statement.Bjorn had led a troubled childhood with his Mother Virgo , leaving his natural Father Leo on account of him being 'boring' at the very impressionable age of ten.His Father had been influential in getting his young son named after one of the members of pop group Abba but had soon after met his Waterloo when his much younger wife had left him for a Spanish Waiter whilst on holiday in Majorca.Bjorn remembers with great clarity his normally reserved Father embarrassing his Wife by declaring at the Hotel Evening A LA Carte buffet to the amorous Fernando that ' I am defeated you won the whore' before storming out to catch an Easy-Jet home.Perhaps that was why Bjorn didn't take vacations during the Six- week holidays or was it the fear of ending up on the same beach as one of his pupils for a fortnight.Now he had finally retired , he wasn't concerned about his reputation or standing in the school, he could finally let the remainder of his hair down.Underneath Bjorn knew that was the reason he had never married- his Parents relationship , being Leo and Virgo was always on the cusp with the inevitable divorce written in the stars- he couldn't face a repeat of that tragedy.He stared out at the North Sea , as his giant cruise ship cut a sway through the grey/blue waters heading North towards the Port Of Stavanger and its ultimate destination of the Carlsberg sponsored Hardanger Fjord- 'probably' the largest fjord in the World.*******************Back home in Abercynon, Nora was busy sorting out her Brother's recycling problem.He had put his paper recycling in the black box and not the green bag and the result was that Eco- unfriendly Council in Snake Valley had left behind a warning notice and potential fine sticker with the waste.They wouldn't take it.A different slant on 'refuse' collection.To prevent more mounting ash in Mountain Ash , Nora had decided to take the papers up to the 'tip' herself.Normally, such task would be beneath someone who had climbed up the social ladder having married an Army Colonel, but having recently succeeded in getting her Half-Brother to leave his entire fortune to her , rather than leave it on intestacy to full blood relatives he didn't ever see, she felt it her duty to ensure that his house was in order whilst he was on holiday.Leaving piles of rubbish uncollected on the street of Abercynon was tantamount to an open invitation to burglars written on social media that you were away on vacation.Picking up the piles of amassed 'Hornby Train Collectors Monthly' and 'Chums' magazines, she placed them with the hand delivered local 'Kebab' shop advertisements and discount vouchers for local supermarkets which appeared unsolicited in his letterbox 'Aldi' time.Unwittingly, she had picked up her Brothers Will with the same pile that her Husband had moved there, for them to take home and lock in their safe at their 'Grange' Country Home.As she made her way up to the Abercynon Recycling centre- the refuse disposal operative was shocked to see his first ever delivery via a Rolls Royce Silver Phantom.He definately expected a 'tip' for turning a blind eye to this delivery of trade waste.Placing the items on the top of the overflowing 'paper' skip with her white silk gloves, Nora felt pleased with herself- it was the most 'work' she had done in two decades and was now 'exhausted' by the ordeal of physical labour.Like her Mother before her , she preferred her labour to be of the 'Manuel' variety rather than the 'Manual' sort and certainly not of the ballot box kind.A sneering glance at the minimum wage Council worker did nothing to engender his support as she looked down her nose at his efforts to direct traffic around the jam which her chauffeur had created on site.'Madam, pay up and would you move your vehicle now as it is causing an obstruction !' Council Worker Wayne Womble ordered.'My good is my husband....Colonel Bogie who gives the Orders ...not people of your persuasion.....besides this is a Gratis is my Brothers rubbish .....Mr Bjorn Free!!' replied Nora arrogantly.' My chauffeur Bentley will be given instruction to move ...all in good time once I have attended to my lipstick....!' said Nora opening her vanity mirror and checking her Botox sponsored monkey lips.As she did so, she pressed a button to rudely send the darkened electric rear window to close in the face of Mr Womble.After two or three minutes of making her point felt, she tapped the interior limousine window to signal to Bentley to head for home.Neither Nora nor Mr Womble noticed a buff coloured envelope marked 'Last Will and Testament of Mr Bjorn Free ' near the top of the pile of recycled papers.***********************************As the cruise ship pulled into picturesque Norwegian Fjord of Hardanger, Bjorn was impressed.It was even more beautiful than he had imagined.With the steep sides surrounding the deep but shining waters , the reflection of his white ship shimmered with symmetry and was a photographers's Heaven with the verdant green slopes, blending in with the tranquil deep blue of the inlet stocked with clear blue Atlantic seawater.Rainbow Trout and Salmon rippled the surface of the fjord, as the unspoilt beauty of the once Viking stronghold of Odda came into view.Bjorn looked up to see perilous granite overhanging rocks that jutted out from the Norwegian skyline.He lifted his binoculars to the Nordic Heavens in the hope of spotting in flight the elusive rare Norwegian Blue Parrot that he so longed to see and record in his bird- spotters almanac diary which had a special place close to his heart.He was told that the almost extinct bird had 'beautiful plumage' and wanted to witness its mating call all to himself.The clicking of the ships tannoy system that preceded an announcement was heard .'Good afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen, we have arrived in Norway and will dock here for two hours for you to explore the World famous, Hardanger Fjord- the third largest fjord in the World...please remember to visit the Viking gift shop at the end of the pier which has a nice selection of Hammers, Axes and Swords for you to try and smuggle back through British Customs ......please remember to pick up any litter you may drop as this fjord has a delicate ecosystem which has existed for over two thousand years since the last great Nordic glacier retreated......'Bjorn couldn't wait for the gangplank to be lowered ,not just because his sea-legs weren't as steady as they were in his youth but he wanted to spend as much time as possible checking out the likely habitat and nesting positions of the local birds - the Scandan- 'Avians '.He strode out with walking stick and crampons tied around his waist ready for his journey up to the top of the summit of the fjord.As he passed some of the majestic waterfalls in the World with crystal clear mineral waters flowing into sheer drops of several hundred feet set in a picturesque backdrop fit for the Gods of Northern Mythology.It was like he had been transported back to the time of Freya and Loki - as the place was an unspoilt haven for fauna and flora.If it was the last thing he did on this Earth, Bjorn was determined to get a photograph of the mystical Norwegian Blue into 'Feathered Friends Monthly' and be the envy of his fellow bird spotters.It was his life's ambition and one to tick off his bucket list before he went up to Valhalla to meet Odin's black ravens Huggin and Munnin.***************************'Have you moved Bjorn's Will?' Asked a frustrated Nora finally after twenty minutes of frantic searching.Her husband , retired Colonel Bogie Mustard-Coleman up from his Suduko and raised an eyebrow at his accuser.'My Dear...if you recall- I placed it near the pile of magazines you were taking up the recycling centre!'Nora's blue blood ran cold.She froze, as a look of horror not seen on her face since she was given second row seats at St David's Hall , Cardiff for the Madame Butterfly Opera and had the indignity of having to sit behind her nemesis Maude Pindick , the Local Police Inspector's Wife for the entire five acts.The social climber could not have been more offended, if she had mixed up her home-made Jewish vegetables and marmalade pots at the local Women's Institute Summer Fete and no one could tell her jam from her Jerusalem Artichoke.The will was missing and needed to be found.What would happen if something went wrong with Bjorn whilst he was on holiday.She was aware from her research as a former actuary , that over 40% of the over 70's that go one retirement cruises do not return.She checked the drawers, her car and then realised that she must have picked up with the Will by accident with the magazines she had taken to the Council recycling centre.Not wishing to wait another second, she grabbed the keys to her limousine and slipped onto the drivers seat of the Rolls and set off for the tip and another showdown with the Council Officials.***************************Bjorn crawled flat on his belly on top of a massive flat rock called the Preikestolen or Pulpit Rock.He was certain he had caught a flash of blue plumage in the bushes to his right.It was definitely a birds nest in there...but was it the 'Holy Quail' of the European Birdwatching fraternity?Bjorn controlled his breathing - he was so close now- he didn't want to miss his photo opportunity as he crawled closer to the edge.He could hear the sound of chicks from beneath the rock, and his desire to get the 'money shot' seemed to cloud Bjorn's judgement , as he edged closer to the rim of the stone.The 67 year old was not as lithe or as supple as he once was and a sudden unexpected strong gust of wind hitting his kite-light anorak , unbalanced the pensioner as he struggled against gravity.He tipped over the edge of the rock, with only his strong hands clinging on by his neatly manicured fingernails.He looked like a wrinkled Sylvester Stallone in Cliffhanger, as he fought to pull himself back up to safety and not plummet 1000 feet into the fjord below.As he held on for dear life, he suddenly felt a tingle in his khaki long-shorts and realised his mobile phone was ringing.Bjorn was no different to anyone else in the modern World- in that he was ruled by his mobile phone.He could not resist the urge to answer it- like a teenage driver responding to a text- it was compulsive.He let go with one hand and pressed receive.'Have you reclaimed your PPI?' said a metallic pre-recorded voice message.Bjorn suddenly realised he was doomed, he could not support his weight one handed and was no longer strong enough to pull himself up with the other - as he tried to swing his body to reach up, his remaining grip was loosened and he plummeted towards the fjord water at 70mph becoming the first recorded pensioner to be filmed from a passing P & O Cruise Ship 'stonewalling' .Ironically, he was passed on the way down by a Norwegian Blue Parrot heading in the opposite direction.Even then, Bjorn tried to film it on his camera phone.*******************Nora Mustard-Coleman was not a happy bunny.She had to be physically restrained by two policemen from getting into the Council paper mountain skip.She had demanded to 'Parle' with Council Employee Wayne Womble and ordered him to go into the container and retrieve her Brother's Will.He had taken great pleasure in refusing to come out of his gnome like porta-cabin on the grounds of 'Elf n Safe Tea'.Nora was having none of it.She knew a jobsworth when she saw one and he was just being bloody minded in revenge for her act of lipstick defiance earlier that day.She had tried herself to climb into the skip but it was so precarious to stand on a pile of paper that she could fall through to the bottom and suffocate under the weight of the Local Government Reorganisational Council Boundary Change Minutes of the new Cynon, Rhondda And Pontypridd (labelled CRAP for short) that had been binned by the Welch Assembly Government.She thought that being an Army wife, that the two police officers being men in uniform would naturally take the side of the person with a much higher social status.How wrong she was.They arrested her and issued her with a formal caution warning her about her behaviour.' Mrs Mustard-Coleman I would remind you that you simply cannot go around slapping Members of the Public or Council Workers in the lawful execution of their duty because they refuse to 'bend' the rules to accommodate your wishes....Mr Womble is legally correct in informing you that once you placed that item in the skip ....ownership passed to the Council who are then free to sell the contents of the skip to whosoever they wish...and not account to the rate paying public for the monies.' Said Sergeant Dimm View'You are fortunate that Mr Womble has agreed not to press charges for Common Assault and Battery providing you apologise to him and agree never to darken his recycling centre again!' continued the Officer.'Batteries were in a different skip Sarge...!' Interrupted PC Correct.The Senior Policeman ignored the comment.' Not in a month of Sunday's will I apologise to that oike...!'replied Nora angrily.'Well if you won't do this the easy way...we will have to do it the hard way....and you will have to accompany us to the Station...Mrs Coleman-Mustard....if you think that skip is a lot of paperwork...wait till you see my desk....!' Said Sergeant View.'I know your Chief Constable personally...If you arrest me ...I promise it will be your last act as Sergeant...!' Said Nora trying to intimidate the Officer.'Do you know what effect the taser gun can have on a human body Mrs Coleman-Mustard?....if I were you I wouldn't be KEEN on taking a blast if I were you!' Shouted Womble enjoying his little victory by gloating at the spectacle.Nora made once last grab for the Will before being forcefully restrained and manhandled into the back of the panda car, by a combination of the officers.********************Bjorn Free was hurtling through the air at around 80mph.Free - falling if you like.Port Talbot actor Rob Brydon was sat on the Upper Deck of his P & O cruise liner watching the entire spectacle.He thought that he better film the entire incident on his camera phone - as no-one back home would ever believe him.Whilst he was now entering the twilight of his career - he was getting fed up of being mistaken for Comedy Actor Ben Miller, and decided that he preferred being the other side of the camera for a change.This complimentary break from the Cruise Line Company in recognition of his advertising on television had been great - whilst Ben Miller was probably still having ' The Worst Week of his Life'.He hoped that the elderly birdwatcher would hang on- but secretly and a little selfishly , a little bit of him wanted to see the man fall - so he could be interviewed on ITV show Good Morning Britain about 'his ordeal' and get fifteen minutes of prime air time that his Agent said his career desperately needed.He was also curious to see if after observing our feathered friends for all these years if this man had learned anything about how to fly himself.Bjorn waved his arms about a bit as he fell parallel to the vertical rock face of the fjord.Bjorn was lucky that his descent was slowed down by protruding green vegetation , as he bumped into small overhangs and green ledges as he plummeted, down spinning and turning in the air.He landed with a sickening crash into the top of a Norwegian Pine tree - arse first - resulting in the worst wedgie known to man.Brydon could see from the result how the idea for the first fairy at the top of the Christmas came to pass.Whether it was kismet or otherwise but Bjorn had crash landed on top of the nest containing the only remaining eggs of the Norwegian Blue Parrot- killing its occupants and the female bird incubating the same.The male parrot too was in shock- he had witnessed the massacre of his entire family by someone who was reputed to be a 'bird lover'.Bjorn was concussed from the fall and utterly defenceless from the insurgent attacks from the Male bird protecting his territory .His mate of ten years no longer looked like a 'pretty polly' but more like a deformed kingfisher.He swooped and dived on poor Bjorn like he was an extra in the Hitchcock film 'the birds' until he managed to send the pensioner tumbling the extra 80 feet to the narrow inlet shoreline.Bjorn landed head first on a rock which knocked him completely unconscious.Brydon, coming from Port Talbot acted 'instinktively-' and dived off the ship in a swallow dive that Splash Olympian Tom Daley would have been proud of.Using his little 'action man' arms to propel himself across the choppy waters of the fjord, Brydon swam like a man possessed.He doggy-paddled his way across the natural estuary towards the downed pensioner and hauled himself up onto the rocky ledge where the stricken Bird man lay bleeding.Brydon tore a strip off his 'I'm not YOUR Uncle Bryn' tee-shirt and wrapped it as a tourniquet around the head wound.He winced a bit , as he popped a little bit of the injured man's brain back inside his temporal lobe.He cradled the injured man in his tiny arms until the sea- ambulance arrived nearly thirty minutes later- which was still within the permitted longship call-out target times.Bjorn was then taken to the closest village of Bledesbaad for specialist treatment on his head injuries.*************************Bjorn woke up in a hospital bed.He had a pounding headache , which felt like he had been struck by Thor's Hammer but was only to be expected considering the height and nature of his fall.He was lucky to be alive, and even luckier that specialist brain surgeon Haard of Herring was passing through the region.As Bjorn opened his eyes for the first time in a week, he knew something was radically wrong.He reached up and felt the top of his head .On the left side, there was a small satellite dish installed inside his fractured skull which made him look like Former England striker Gary Lineker in profile.The rest of his 'Swede' was wrapped in conventional Norwegian Head medicine - dressed in vinegar and brown paper.He remembered what had happened to him but didn't have a clue where he was- other than in hospital.He opened his mouth to speak but no English came out.There was sound but he couldn't understand what he was saying to himself.Dr Herring was summoned by an Asian looking nurse who strangely seemed to be the only one of the two able to understand his request.Bjorn instinctively knew that there was some neurological damage- that his brain had been impaired by the fall but it was too early to understand its full effect.Dr Herring was talking to the Nurse who Bjorn understood to be called Wun Hung Lo.Haard of Herring was difficult to listen to , as with his speaking in gobbledegook - it was like he was in a Foreign Country.Bjorn didn't know it but it was the first man to be saved by his anorak hood and the integral layers of dandruff packing.As soon as Nurse Hung Lo spoke he could understand her.She signalled for his family and friends to come in to see him - after all they had flown in from Britain to be at his bedside.His Step-sister Nora, his Brother-in-Law Colonel Mustard , his real sister -Elsa Free - who had been released into the wilds of Africa - who had had not seen for over twenty years and some chap with a television crew who looked like comedian off the television , all came in at once to see the invalid.'It is nice to see you are 'Brainually Retentive' again!' gasped the relieved comedian.' I feared that like that Norwegian blue parrot you were a had ceased to be...become an ex-man...being really really Thor from hitting that Norwegian Spruce....'Bjorn did not understand a single word the Welshman uttered- not because of his accent but that it was being received by Bjorn's brain in English.'This Doctor and his staff have brought you back from the dead and left only a tiny portable scar on your head!' Said Nora relieved that her Step-Brother was still alive and kicking- even if his right leg was paralysed completely from the pine needle injuries.Once again Bjorn could see her lips moving but could not understand a single word that was uttered.It was like watching a bad Western Film dubbed into Welsh.'Those Norwegian Surgeons are wonderful- repairing your brain the way they did- they are the real heroes of Telly- Mark' " quipped Brydon.The joke like the mini satellite dish on top of Bjorn's Free's bonze ....just went right over their heads.'Is that Free- view?' Asked Brydon following up his earlier effort at humour which fell even flatter than a Welsh Ornithologist off a Norwegian Fjord.'I have brought you something...look here are the deeds to your house and the keys to your car...if you give them back to me I will accept them as a 'death bed gift' ' said Nora passing over a metal box.Bjorn tried to speak but all that came out was the sound of a language he did not recognise.Only Nurse Hung- Lo appeared to understand -as it was in a Chinese dialect.It was odd , as before the accident Bjorn had never even been to China or even eaten Chinese Food.He did however accept the box from his step- sister and placed alongside him on the bed.He asked the Nurse to ask the Doctor if he could be permitted to have a small can of American lite beer and a cigarette to celebrate the survival of his ordeal.Dr Herring didn't object- after all he was a big fan of 'smoking' too.Bjorn picked up the box containing his deeds and his car keys but to the dismay of his Step-Sister Nora and Blood Sister Elsa , he handed them over to Brydon in gratitude for him saving his life.Brydon cheekily also asked if he had 'any plans for that left slipper too?'As he did so he raised his beer can to the Comedian that had saved his life.In perfect Mandarin he said''It's Miller Time!'.He was no longer a Bjorn again Christian but a Bjorn again Buddhist.

updated by @philip-evans: 01/28/16 09:56:49PM
Philip evans
01/28/16 09:54:44PM
31 posts

Religious I-Con

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2015

Religious I-conThe wind was whipping around the graveyard of St Tydfil’s Parish Church, with Autumn leaves being tossed around by mini-cyclones, as if they were paper planes.Pastor Selby-Date tried to open the heavy wooden door of his Church but the force of the wind was too much.He had to put down the King James Bible that he carried around for emergency purposes.In Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales you never knew when the Holy Book would come in handy, as either a shield or as a weapon.As he pushed his shoulder into it- he was shocked to see a gaunt looking face staring back at him.Without a second thought, the wan stranger slid in through the narrow opening of the door of the Ancient Church.Pastor Selby-Date was a little scared at the intrusion – after all, this sacred spot was rumoured to have been the place where Tydfil the Martyr was murdered and he was conscious of the phrase ‘history has a nasty habit of repeating itself’.The man’s face was a similar shade of colour to that of the interior vestry walls- magnolia.He too clearly had a habit- as he was stick thin and looked as if he could have ‘snapped’ in the high winds outside.He was red around the eyes, as if he had taken something recently and was not fully aware of what day of the week it was.He looked almost as dangerous as Johnny Depp’s dogs, Boo & Pistol and the Pastor was still uncertain as to whether or not to let him into the Sanctuary.Pastor Selby then had a divine revelation- that he should not Judge the man before him- as his Saviour Jesus Christ had looked not dissimilar to the man with his straggly beard and thin frame, hanging on the wall of his Church.The Pastor plucked up enough courage to speak to the man- being alone without a mobile phone or any of his usual congregation to help in the event of trouble.“ I am sorry My Son but the Church is closed!” said the Pastor.“ But it is SUNDAY!” protested the shivering stranger.He only had a ‘trainspotting live’ tee-shirt on his torso , as he clasped his thin fingers around the energy efficient wall-light bulb- desperate for some warmth.“ This church closes at 10.00pm but reopens tomorrow at 11.00am!” announced the Pastor in his best sermon voice.“ Closed …even to receive this?” asked the stranger.He produced from under his tee-shirt a small bowl resembling the top of the Chalice of Valencia.“ What is it?” asked Pastor Selby.“ Don’t you know what it is… yourself a Man of God?” asked the Strange pointing to his dog-collar.“ What is your name….friend….?” asked the Pastor nervously.“ I have many names….I have street names…I have my Birth name!” said the stranger.“ One would do!” said the Pastor looking at a member of his Parish flock with suspicion.“ Renton!” replied the stranger.“ Evening…Renton… I am Pastor Selby-Date ….or Louis to my friends and parishioners!” said the Man of the Cloth –a little more relaxed-no longer touching cloth.“ Louis…Pastor…?” replied Renton….” I am sure he was a druggie too like me!”Pastor Selby looked at the pustule covered face and scratch marks on Renton’s face and began to worry again that his physical body was once again in peril.If someone disrespected their own body this way- they obviously had even less regard for other people’s wellbeing.“ So what is it exactly?” asked the Pastor.“ You already KNOW what it is….look inside your own soul !” said Renton.“ It came to me this Morning- its religious significance that is…when I found it surrounded by a corona of light …atop two videos of Indian Jones & the Last Crusade and Monty Python’s first feature film!” said Renton.“ I must say you are very eloquent for a heroin addict!” said the Pastor.“ Thing is….Louis…I wasn’t always a junkie….there is always a sad tale behind each fall from grace!” said Renton.“ That’s true…do go on!” said the Pastor.“ I was married in this very Church in 2015- shortly after you re-opened and re-solemnised this Medieval Church….did you know there has been a Church on this site….for over 1500 years…?” asked Renton.“ I am new to the Parish….but I knew it was quite old!” said the Pastor.“ Well this Church is where I originally found this cup buried ….in the external alcove near the Chancel!” said Renton.“ Thing is…before my fall from Grace- by the wife that was the name of my nagging Wife…Louis…I was a local Politician and shop owner…I was in all the right organisations that control the Town…the Freemasons, the Royal Order of the Buffaloes, Tesco and of course the Knights Templar…!” the shivering drug addict continued.“ Go on!” said the Pastor with his interest having been piqued.“ My Real Father was originally from Scotland- he met my biological Mother on a rugby trip many years ago and in his Will, he left a series of startling revelations which left me so confused that I turned to drugs….imagine finding out that the man that reared me, Irvine Welsh, for 23 years was not my real Father at all…it was like Paula Yates all over again…..luckily my Father wasn’t Hughie Green …he was called Vincent ….anyway he didn’t leave me any money but he did leave me a series of Medieval Documents with various clues therein….I trust you understand that when ‘Opportunity Knocks’ ….you have to take it…!” eulogised Renton.“Irvine told me that my real Mother was called Rosslyn Chapel…but I could find no trace of her in Merthyr’s Births, Deaths & Marriages records!”.“ He left me with a family trail that led from the Middle East to Rome, Spain, France, Glastonbury Tor, Scotland and then to the South Wales Valleys!” continued the addict.“ Irvine once told me that I am descended from someone called Joseph of Aromatherapy!”“ I followed the series of clues that my real Scottish Father had left me and together with some cyphers and cryptographs and it led to this very cup buried in the consecrated ground next to this Medieval Church and was being used as a surface water gully pot…Da Vinces’s Code…led me to the very ancient Holy relic!” said Renton.“ So you think that this cup…is… THE Holy Grail?” asked the open-mouthed Pastor.“ Well , the Church World-wide has a history of being duped into paying fortunes out for religious artefacts and then creating pilgrimages to the Churches housing such relics….but I think it was definitely involved in the Last Supper!” said Renton.“ I have compared it to the painting by Leonardo Da Vinci and it is identical to the bowl in front of Jesus Christ on the long table!” the addict continued.“ But Leonardo Da Vinci wasn’t present at the Last Supper was he?….he wasn’t one of the 13 disciples was he….!” Said the Pastor.“ So you think you are some sort of Bible expert do you?” asked Renton.“ Well..I am a Pastor , went to Bible College and was ordained and have studied the Word of God all my life!” said the Holy Man.“ But have you ever REALLY read it….after taking two bags of magic mushrooms…I had it narrated to me by the voice of God…and yes…he really does sound like Morgan Freeman!” said Renton.“ And you have found this ‘San Greal’ from your ‘habit’ of ‘drain-spotting too’?” asked the Pastor suspiciously.“ Well….I suppose you could say that!” replied Renton.“Sorry to be a ‘Doubting Thomas’ but if this the One True Grail from the time of the real Christ…don’t you think…even in this poor candlelight….that it wouldn’t have writing on its side?” continued Louis.“ What writing…where?” asked Renton.“ Or this face of what… looks like a tiger?” said the Pastor.“ I can make out the letters…F.O.ST..S!” the Preacher said turning the bowl.“ It probably stands for Father of Saint someone or other!” said Renton.“ I forgot…you are good at cracking enigma codes and things…. but what about that tiger?” asked the Pastor still not convinced.“ Well they did have them in Mesopotamia and the Ancient Ur Valley…and that is close to the Holy Land….didn’t that Old Testament bloke get slung in with a few?” continued Renton.“ I believe you are referring to the story of Daniel in the Lion’s Den!” said the Pastor.“ Yeah…but there COULD have been some tigers in there too!” said Renton.The Padre remained sceptical.“ Look it doesn’t really matter if YOU don’t believe it is genuine….it is what YOUR CONGREGATION believes that counts…surely that is what your church was built on….FAITH?” pleaded Renton sitting down on a wooden bench.“ Good point!” said the Pastor.“ Good publicity for the Church too….put a few more bums on pews eh?” said the Pastor…” No offence like!” said the Pastor realising what he had just said.“ None-taken…that’s the Holy spirit….now all that is left… is to haggle over the price…!” said Renton.“ Well I don’t like to talk shop in the Church itself- especially in front of the Holy Grail…remember Our Lord wasn’t ’bowled’ over by moneychangers being in the temple!” said the Pastor.“£100.00…cash!” offered the shivering Renton – going cold turkey – and not only because of the frozen chicken he had shoplifted from Farm Foods was affecting his nether regions.“ That’s very cheap for the REAL grail!” said the Pastor.“ Are you calling me a liar?” snarled Renton.The Pastor thought discretion was the better than valour.“ Of course not….If you are a gambling man…why don’t I offer you what is in this sealed box in exchange for the relic…this congregation collection box COULD be rammed with cash ….we had a big funeral here of the last Merthyr business man this week…?” offered the Pastor.“ And there is some nice lead flashings up on that roof….got to be worth SOMETHING!” he said throwing some more consideration into the deal- but fully ‘cogniSaint’ that the Church of Wales was well insured- unlike him.After a five second Mexican stand- off, the Holy Grail was thrust into the hands of the Pastor in exchange for the collection box and Renton was gone quicker than funeral mourners past a collection plate.The Pastor bolted the heavy wooden door behind the druggie who disappeared into the night he had appeared from.“ How much did you get for the Frosties bowl?” asked his accomplice Sick Boy as they sat on the Lucy Thomas Fountain steps.Levering the box open- he replied angrily- “ £3.75, some Polish coins and three buttons!”“ That’s GRRRREat!” said Sick Boy.“ Let’s go to the Constitutional Club and buy a bottle of cheap imported Polish vodka that we can drink through our eye sockets again!”“ Now that’s a REAL I-Con!” replied Renton

updated by @philip-evans: 01/28/16 09:55:06PM
Philip evans
01/28/16 09:53:13PM
31 posts

A Blast from the Glast

West Coast Eisteddfod Short Story Competition 2015

Welsh student Peter 'the Rock' Giggs loved his big music festivals, and they didn't come much bigger than Glastonbury in June. He was particularly ecstatic, as he had just obtained his degree from Pontypridd Polytechnic and was rightly proud of his 'Desmond'. As the old saying goes- a 2/1 for thinkers and a 2/2 for drinkers. He was delighted with his degree in 'David Beckham studies' and was hoping to get a job as a ballboy at the Cardiff City Stadium when the new season started in August, but for now he had the 'Summer of Love' to look forward to.

It was a hot Summers day and the Rock was cooking , standing in line waiting to use one of the men's porta-kabins supplied by one of the festival hippy sponsors, 'Sceptic Tanks'. He had plenty off time to read the advertising slogans written on its side- as he had been queuing for over half n hour and he felt that if he didn't go soon one of his kidneys would burst. As the queue shuffled along slowly, he sincerely hoped that each of the three guys that were in front of him , wanted to spend a penny and not 'drop the kids off at the pool' - as was the current euphamism for a number two. As he was from the Welsh Valleys, his choice of 'Rhymney slang' phrase was a 'Merthyr Kitt'. He tried hopping on one leg , like young children do, to pass the time and not his waste liquid but it was to no avail...he could feel a tiny trickle -as if from a downstairs tear duct.

The trouble was that it was like going for a pee at the Millenium Stadium, all those beer swilling men wanted to go at the same time- halftime or full time or as was the case, as soon as the act on the Pyramid Stage ended. He was reluctant to urinate into the next field, as there were rumours that the boundary fence had been electrified this year to keep the New Age Travellers that did not want to pay the £230.00 entry fee. He knew from his 'New Age Education' that in the darkening evening sky that if he hit the wire with his arc of urine, that it would create a circuit and the charge would flow back and he would become yet another 'conductor' at the festival and he didn't want his own personal baton to lead the 'Electric Light Orchestra'. He had no option but to brave it out and hope that his kidneys didn't 'turn to stone'.

He was now second from the Holy Cubicle and within smelling distance of the chemical toilet.True, his senses had been nullified a little over the last week by the smell of hippy body odour and worse still the smell of petunia oil- which he knew from the Polytechnic days as 'Junkie Juice' but the stench from the trench serving the latrine was really overpowering. The amount of body fluids that been anticipated was way below what had been expelled and the units were overflowing and the surplus water ran like yellow rain down the man made gulley and into the watercourse which ultimately served the River Brue on the Somerset Levels. Perhaps that was the true inspiration behind the Scottish drink -Irn Brue. He thought about tying a knot in it , but despite what he told his friends it wasn't big enough to do that.

There was now only one man in the cubicle between him and his long awaited relief. This was the crucial moment for Rock- they say that the darkest time of night is just before dawn- this is true of the moment before your bladder empties too. The toilet door swung open and the first to react was an elderly gentleman in his eighties , who cut in line in front of the desperate Rock. Rock protested limply, as it was difficult to be assertive with your legs crossed standing up.

'Do you know the way to San Jose?' asked the distinguished white-haired American in a strong New York accent. Distracted and unable to offer a coherent reply, Rock was met with the slam of the heavy plastic cubicle door in his face and the sound of the door being locked from the inside. Gutted he had been hoodwinked-Rock would give the old geezer a piece of his mind, once he came out.

For what seemed like an eternity, Rock stood holding the tip of his manhood in his clenched fist , as if his 501 jeans colour depended on it. Finally, the aged Yank emerged from the toilet smiling, having executed his plan with military precision. Rock, being Welsh , was brainwashed into respecting his elders and betters , principally because the over 70s in Wales were now the only ones who had any money or were still in employment. He glared at the cheating wrinklie, who toddled off in the direction of the main arena, as fast as his artificial hips would carry him.

'Do you know who THAT was ?' asked the middle age divorcee dressed in a Andre Agassi headband, reliving his mid-life crisis.

'No...but you ain't distracting me's my turn for a piss!' said the Rock. 'If I don't go now...he said stepping inside the WILL get blood out of a stone!'

As he bolted the door, he undid his fly and stood in an upright position. It was times like these when he appreciated buttons and not a zip- the last thing he wanted to do was catch his pubes in his zipper and urinate all over the place. He assumed that is what had happened to the last few occupiers , as the cubicle floor was four inches deep in pee and the toilet basin looked as if it had been decorated by a combination of Banksy, Mary Berry and Thornton's .

It was definately not the 'Hollywood ' Bowl and it would take some poor immigrant worker a Hell of a job to get the Great British Cake- Off. It was the first time, he had ever witnessed yellow condensation before, as he observed that the last occupant had clearly suffered from prostate trouble, as he had been on the ceiling more than Lionel Ritchie. As Rock's engine finally started and a jet stream of urine flowed into the toilet, which from outside sounded like there was a horse in there with him- it was Somerset after all-, the student suddenly realised it was raining INSIDE the cubicle. As he did so, he noticed that at the dark side of the toilet basin floating in the 'yellow sea' was a 'Backstage Pass' belonging to one Burt Bacharach. So that is why 'Raindrops are falling on my head!' remarked the student. He lifted the soggy cardboard ticket and looked at the markings. It looked genuine enough to him. He shook the remaining droplets off his member and put it back in his Calvin Klein underpants. He waded back to the door and tried to slide the bolt back. As he did so, the small metal bar on the top of the bolt snapped clean off.

Rock looked at the small piece of rusted metal and realised that the 'acid house' atmosphere coupled with the heat over the five days at Glastonbury and continual use had ruined the lock. Rock was trapped inside. Worse still, the long queue outside was getting a tad impatient and began to bang on the door and sides of the toilet making even more chemicals spill into the unit. The 'Eau de toilette ' was now up over his ankles and lapping at his henna tattoo of Lady Gaga. He was also starting to get a little woozy from all the drugs that were contained in the piss that were being absorbed by his skin. LSD, Ketamine, Ecstacy, Cocaine and twenty -eight different types of cannapiss swished around in his trainers. It wasn't long before his Hi-Tech trainers became 'High'Tech trainers.

The new acts were being called to the central stage to the sounds of high-pitched screams which in the 1960's had been first witnessed for the Fab Four- but now teenage girls would scream at any pre-pubescent singer even if they looked like Ed Sheeran. The angry crowd outside threatened to tip him over into the trench as he had 'McBusted' the lock. One hysterical Father decided enough was enough and shoulder-charged the plastic toilet, sending the unstable kharzi into the WC Fields behind. As it toppled over , poor old Rock hit his head on the flush handle and was knocked unconscious. He got a mouth and nose full of the chemical solution which nearly drowned him- had it not been for his gag reflex. As a student, when he had drunk too much in a drinking game called 'Buzz', his fellow students made sure that during the Fraternity House initiation ceremony that the 'Fresher' would not be allowed to quit drinking until they had stood up and told a blue joke. The Bloo was already covering Rock but he forced himself to 'stand-up' and heard his half- conscious self say:

'What does a sewage worker and a good 69 have in common? One slip and your in the shit!' spluttered the chemically enhanced tax dodger.

By now, Rock was starting to get worried , as he realised that he was starting to become overwhelmed by the fumes. More alarmingly he began to hallucinate. He suddenly felt that he was not alone in the toilet.A voice in his head was followed by a slight breeze through the crack in the toilet door, that had appeared following its dislodgement from its original position. Rock was certain someone had said 'the Wind Cries Mary'. But the even more disturbing thing was it wasn't in was like it was it was played on a Heavenly guitar.

All of a sudden , through the 'Purple Haze' appeared the bandana head of Jimi Hendrix, followed by his beaming face and yellow teeth.'Hey Joe....are you enjoying the 'Experience'?' asked the dead guitarist.

Rock couldn't believe his eyes. The ultimate guitar hero was sitting crossed legged in a yoga position talking to him.'Is that really you Jimi?' spluttered Rock ingesting a new wave of urine caused by the ripple effect of the deceased musician.

'Yes caused that to happen...'all along the wash towel' ' said the phantom bluesman.

'What do you want with me?' said the nervous student.

'I have one regret in my short life...I only lived to 27 you know...trapped in this cubicle I only now appear on Top of the Plops, Ready Steady Go...before this punishment I played at the Monterey Festival and headlined at Woodstock .... I really regret that I never made it to the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury....! ' wailed the Afro-ed warbler.

'Sorry about that...but Woodstock was before I was born and they tell me if you remember being there weren't REALLY there....!' replied Rock finding his feet a little (wet, wet ,wet).

'Oh I WAS there and not just in spirit...I remember talking to Max Yasgur about his farm as if it was .....what did my fellow performers the Beatles say...ah Yesterday....'' said the string maester busy name dropping.

'So why have you chosen me ...of all people...?' asked Rock.

'We share a common were born on the 27th November just like me!' Rock asked the Rock God.

'Hippy Birthday' said Rock....but can you tell me what you want from me?

''I came to set you free man....I am like a genie in a bottle ...trapped in this porta-loo for all eternity until someone does my bidding!' said the Legend.

'More like pill-popper in Pilton Farm!' replied Rock getting cheeky.

'Do you want to get out of this Toilet Tardis or wot?' asked Jimi riddling.

'How can you - an apparition - get me out of here...?' asked Rock.

'Voodoo .....Child ....and a strong pair of teeth!' said Jimi sizing up the trapped metal bolt like it was a guitar string on a Fender Stratoscaster.

'But IF I get you out ....I want one last favour...and you will have to hurry as this potion of piss and barbiturates is ruining my velvet jacket!' said the Ex-Hippy.

'How can I help you Plectrum Spectre?' said Rock honoured to be asked.

'I want you to get up on the pyramid stage and set fire to Burt Bacharach's Piano!' ordered the spirit.

'Why would you want to do that?' asked Rock looking puzzled.

'Well I was speaking to Noel Gallagher the other day at a seance and he said there was something wrong with Rock n Roll in this Country when Ed Sheeran was headlining Wembley Stadium.....I feel the same way about the way that music is going....Ex Factor and Britain's Got Talent is sucking the lifeblood out of Rock n Roll....manufactured pop with singers that can't sing and artists that can't string two lines of lyric together that mean anything....look at the headline act on Stage 2- Cheryl Cole duets with Milli Vanilli....come on man!' protested Hendrix.

'But you didn't strike me as a fan of pyromania...I thought you were the Hendrix not the Prodigy !' replied the Rock.

'Who do you think set Michael Jackson's hair on fire in that 1984 Pepsi commercial...that wasn't no pyrotechnics....that was me!' admitted the Fringe Festival Firestarter.'Who set fire to his guitar on stage at the Monterey Pop Festival...who inspired Led Zeppelin to trash their hotel rooms ...who told Keith Moon of the Who to drive a Lincoln Continental Car into a Holiday Inn swimming pool....?' asked the Kinky Afro.

'Burt Bacharach?' Asked the Rock.'Hal David?''

"It was ME dummy...and now I want to be remembered by a new generation of rock fans who think of me just as an unsold poster in the corner of HMV music store!' raged Jimi.'Once you have torched his Steinway, I want you to tell them the spirit of Jimi Hendrix told you to do it and swallow dive into the crowd....if you do this you will become as much as a Festival Legend as I was at Woodstock....!

''You can be my Mark Chapman but only this time no insect will be harmed - set fire to the piano and if you wish you can then 'tinkle on the ivories'' suggested Jimi.

'Let me out and I'll do it!' said Rock.

Jimi bit down hard on the rusted bolt and freed the trapped student. Gulping down a lungful of pure oxygen- the Rock felt as high as a kite- he also ingested the spirit of Hendrix. Heading back briefly to 'tent city' for some lighter fluid and his Bob Marley emblazoned cigarette lighter, he staggered through the psychedelic crowd in a purple haze as if on another planet. The crowd watching Burt Bacharach was ten thousand deep but parted like the Red Sea at the command of Moses principally because of the infused stench of the Welsh Student drenched in urine, byre water and cow shit that was reminiscent of the aroma of the nearby Bridgwater Canal in a heatwave. Noses were wrinkled worse than a female cow elephant deprived of her anti-ageing cream. Flags and banners were lowered in disgust at the obnoxious odour which even caused fellow students to fall from the shoulders of other revellers. Even the combatants in the Mosh Pit stopped pogoing at the passing fragrance , as Rock anched his way towards the front of the crowd.

Waving his white soggy backstage pass at security, he was directed hurriedly towards the stage door by the stewards and then the roadies. As he made his way through the groupies, they were stunned not just by his appearance but also the odour of human landfill , as he pushed passed them intent on reaching centre stage, Rock initially hesitated when he got there. It was definitely a classic case of 'stage fright'. Knocking over the backing band and their string instruments Rock grabbed hold of the centre stage microphone.

Burt Bacharach stopped momentarily playing his piano , and warned the Rock that 'you'll never get to Heaven if you break my be very careful what you say or do' There were twenty thousand people hanging on his every word. Security guards crept forward slowly from both wings.The Rock held them back by lifting his arm threatening them with his armpit stink. Pheromones can be dangerous weapons in the wrong hands.

'Now Ladies & Gentlemen of Glastonbury....I have a message from beyond the grave from Jimi Hendrix....the greatest rock guitarist that ever lived....'as he did so....the face of Hendrix appeared on the visage of the Rock- a phenomena that was witnessed on the big screens all around the Festival site.....Zammo from Grange Hill was right kids....don't do drugs or you will join the '27 Club' like my astral friends, Brian Jones, Janis Joplin & Jim Morrison ...stay out of the bodegas too - avoid Winehouses like the plague....or I promise you like Kurt Cobain you will never ever reach Nirvana....but before you's important to do something memorable ....leave behind something for people to remember you by....he began to play the 'Star Spangled Banner' using the palm of his hand in his armpit into the microphone....and then leapt on top of the Bacharach people...before exposing his phallus , urinating on the vase of carnations on the piano top and tinkling on the ivories....he then began to sing 'Magic Moments' at the top of his voice.....'I'll never forget the smell of the sweat as I pissed on the flowers...the aroma lasted for hours and hours....'

He then casually sprayed the piano with lighter fluid and struck his lighter switch. The piano despite being wet went up like a tinderbox. Burt Bacharach, despite being an Octagenarian leapt across the fiery stage and grabbed Rock by the throat - as if he was Hal David on their final collaboration together.He tackled the young student and handcuffed him in one movement. There was one benefit to being 87 years of age - no sense of smell.

The security staff were mightily impressed by the agility of the pensioner- most Jewish Samaritans would just 'Walk on By' but Burt got stuck right in.

'Where did you learn to do that?' asked Bouncer Dior Keeper.

'My first wife was a may have heard of her ....Angie Dickinson?' said Burt.

'Dickinson?'asked Dior.....'I would be careful if I was you over here....Operation Yew tree hasn't finished yet and you were Top of the Pops in the 1970s I assume?.' Questioned the Security Man.

'Angie Dickinson....ooh foxy lady!,' said the spirit of Jimi Hendrix from deep within the young student.

Burt dug his knee Rodney King -style into the kid's back.

'I wasn't talking to you PERP!' Said Judge Burt 'I did spend a good deal of that decade at the top of the charts....!' declared the lyrical gangster raising his prisoner onto his feet with a view to handing him over to the Authorities.

Suddenly, Rock broke his grip and swallowed dived into the crowd shouting 'Freedom' like he was Wales William Wallace, hoping to crowd - surf his way out of the arena. Exactly whether it was the pheromones or just a general aversion to dirty students is unknown -but the crowd parted and Rock fell like a stone into the Glastonbury mud with a splat....dislodging the spirit in the sky and sending Hendrix 'purple haze' back to the ether it had come from. The blast from the Glast was now in the past.

updated by @philip-evans: 01/28/16 09:53:38PM
Philip evans
03/26/14 08:36:17PM
31 posts

Ill advised short story

General Discussions ( Anything Goes )

Ill advised Welcome Mr Sponger....Ive heard a lot about you from my appears that you are the stuff of legend in these here parts! said Mr Eichmann, Chairman of the DSS Unemployment Appeals Tribunal in Merthyr Tydfil.Mr Sponger accompanied by his friend McKenzie took a chair in the middle of the room facing the panel. Mr Sponger...Im afraid your companion will have to leave the room...this back- to- work interview is private and confidential! continued the Chairman. Mac here is my lawyer....! said Sponger looking the chairman in the eye. Your Government Rules say that I am entitled to have legal representation present at such a hearing....if this version of the Nuremburg trials is in fact a hearing! said Sponger. Mr Sponger...this is not a trial...this a board set by the new Conservative Government to determine whether or not you are fit to return to work your lawyer....which law school did he attend...? asked Eichmann. No Law School Sir...but he has a degree from the University of Life and was brought up in Galon Uchaf, Merthyr Tydfil and is therefore an expert in unemployment matters...!Besides ...interrupted McKenzie ... he is my friend and once again Mackenzie Friends are permitted in hearings of this nature .Rule 7c of the Unemployment (Wales) Benefit Regulations 2010 (as ratified by the Welsh Assembly and the European Parliament....! said Mac reading from his book Employment Law for DummiesEichmann knew then he was going to have trouble with this pair.This is Dr Hilary Jones, formerly of GMTV ...a daytime show that you probably watched while everyone else was in work! sneered Eichmann.The jibe did not even register with Sponger.His skin was thicker than a rhino wearing rugby padding. Wheres my usual Doctor....from Swansea....Dr Mumbles...wheres he gone? asked Sponger nervously. He was struck off for helping a drugs mule get five condoms from his intestines with a street value of 1 Million....once he had his cut he told the General Medical Council to shove their job up their arse....since GMTV finished ...Dr Hilary needed to get back to the DSS helped him....and now we are trying to help you! said Eichmann. used to be the DHSS...and then you dropped the H...why dont you drop the D too and show your true colours! said Sponger. Mr have been out of work so dont just have a have your own cabinet....!replied Eichmann. Let me left school in 1962...the year of the Cuban Missile crisis and have worked less than 50 days since! said Eichmann. Hes been ill see! said Mackenzie interrupting. Oh yes....hes been ill alright....! said Dr Hilary Jones. Ive been reading his medical records for two weeks and that was just the notes on the front cover! Hilary Jones....thats a girlie name....and what the Hell are you doing to your hair these days? said Sponger ....My mother would have given me a clip around the head if I pretended to go to school with hair like that!The glare from the TV Medic was enough. In 1962 , after you left school and started in Hoovers in Pentrebach...., you left the premises on your very first day because you felt the room spinning around you..... said Dr Hilary Jones.What did you expect you were in the Washing Machine manufacturing Section.... said Eichmann pontificating. In 1963...continued Dr Jones... you want to work in Triangs Factory...and resigned after claiming you were being pushed around by the foreman in the pram department.! Your medical records show your were prescribed tranquilisers in 1963 and have never come off them! Oh dont stop my prescriptions Doc or half my street will be start to besiege your waiting room too! said Sponger. Idris the Milk likes those blue pills and Dai the Coal would be lost without his Tamazepan! So in were sent to Thorns for some light long did you last there? asked Eichmann. dont have to answer that...said Mac...they already have that information on file! Two hours....I was in my element there till they told me I would have to work Continental Shifts...I have been incontinent every since....come on... who in their right mind in Merthyr works more than 16 hours a week ....everyone knows that affect your benefits! said Sponger. 1965 ...wasnt a good year for you either was started in OP chocolates didnt you! said Eichmann. Well I thought Id give it a whirl! said Sponger. You got sacked from there on the first day for kakking in the chocolate vats ...isnt that right! declared Eichmann. I wish had been in charge up there ! sighed Eichmann Id have put you in the ovens! I bet you would ! said Mac. That wasnt my fault....I wasnt used to having a toilet indoors in those was like a new piece of machinery to me...I was used to the one up the top end of the garden which didnt block easy....they wouldnt have found out either if that Racing Post I used to wipe the clinkers off hadnt clogged the machine up! replied Sponger. So whats your excuse in 1965....when you left Trelewis Drift Mine......scared of the dark? said Eichmann. According to his medical records he was traumatised as a kid when his pet canary died said Dr Jones deciphering reading the handwriting of Dr Mumbles. You drop out of the employment records for the next 19 years until the 1984 Miners Strike when you apply to become a Scab.....the records show that you turned up for work at Merthyr Vale colliery every day for a week but went home because you wouldnt cross a picket line! Every Doctor will tell you it will never get better if you picket! replied Mac the equivalent of an unwanted extra in a Bet Fair Ad. In 1990 you went to work in Abercanaid...Blue Bird Toys makingA la Carte lasted one day! said Eichmann And why ? he asked Sponger. I got food poisoning! said Sponger defensively. Dr Jones...have you ever heard of anyone catching food poisoning from plastic food? asked Eichmann. He is allergic to all the additives the Government put in our food to kill off the Proleteriat! said Mac. So in 2000 you were ordered to work in the meat factory up at Pengarnddu...! You lasted one whole day before getting the chop....can you tell us why! said Eichmann. It was brilliant ...he told the Portuguese workforce that each of the animals had names....Daisy....Buttercup...Croesfeld Jacobs.....and that they were like pets to him....! interrupted would slaughter anything for a week!Sponger sat silently smirking reliving the moment of genius. I was a vegetarian for almost a month after that one...till I got fed up of KFC! said Sponger... And what about the short spell at the Opencast site? asked Eichmann. Why did you leave there? Allergic to dust.....its in my medical there Doc! said Sponger. I see Dr Mumbles ran a lot of tests on appears Simbec Research have shares in you according to this! said Dr Jones. He quit because thats what the Doctor ordered! said Mac. So to the key question today are you actively looking for work ? asked Eichmann. Ive applied for lots of jobs...but I agree I need to upload my CV to Jobsite! said Sponger. Are yes.....snow shoveller in Jamaica in cream salesman in the North Pole even had a job offer for John Lewis for Santa Claus in the Toy Department.....but you turned up on Boxing fairness there was a glowing reference from Transfynydd Nucleur Power station about your to renew your energy and that you are a good worker but are easily lead.....but in all honesty your 64 now and you dont really want to work do you? said Eichmann. Dont answer that....its a leading question designed to trip you up! said Mac You even said NO to a job offer from the Man from Del Monte! said Eichmann defiantly. Come on...we all know that this Country was founded on the principle that the primary role of the Government is to protect property from the masses! preached Mac manically. And the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of this Country is that we have a right to be unemployed if we want to! said Sponger That is the basis of the Welfare State! supported Mac. The Welfare what it says ...well fair! said Sponger. Well youre right about the state part ....its because its right in state that we have to weed out people like you and get your kind back to work!...I cant cut back on staff...I dont have anyone left over the age of 25....why we ever stopped transportation is beyond me! muttered Eichmann. See .....said Mac ...I told you hed show his true colours....its the classes against the masses again! If you sign him off will be the end of the black market economy...pubs like The Thalidomide Arms and Spoons will close....tobacco firms and breweries ...and the three bookies on Victoria Street ...will I bet go to the wall warned Mac. See I told you! said Eichmann.... You cant win against these people!....there is only one solution....albeit somewhat final! I have an idea! whispered Dr Jones to his Government Colleague. Im awfully sorry to have troubled you Mr Sponger especially after what I have just read about you in your medical file....said Dr Jones....after all you dont have long...!Spongers ears pricked up. What did you say Doc? Are you still smoking those cigars....? asked Dr Jones. Ten a day...! said Sponger proudly Still drink ten pints of Guinness? Yeah....! he boasted wearing it like a badge of honour. Good....youll need something to cushion the blow and to get over the shock! said Dr Jones. Youve tested positive for AIDS...HIV...Chlamydia...and the Lassa Virus...! said the Dr from WHO . Jesus! ....said Mac moving away from his former brother-in arms. I think we need HIM to cure you! said Dr Jones. That is a sign of a sick mind! said Eichmann....looking down at the notes trying to decision the hieroglyphics. How exactly do you catch Porksword? asked Sponger nervously. Bestiality usually ....or eating too many bacon sandwiches! said Dr Jones watching his victim squirm. Dont get all Shipman on me Doctor!....level with me how long have I got! pleaded Sponger. Sorry its time to go....are you in BUPA?...if not make an appointment in a monthss time at the Health Centre...if you are still around! said Dr Jones. You free to go now....enjoy the rest of your life gentlemen! he continued.As the two left, worried sick about the imminent arrival of the non- government sponsored Grim Reaper, Dr Jones smiled at Eichmann. Thatll teach them to take the piss out my hair ! What exactly is Sponger suffering from anyway? asked Eichmann Hes been swinging the lead....nothing medical ....unless you include hypochondria and an allergy to hard work! .
updated by @philip-evans: 11/11/15 10:39:11PM
Philip evans
03/25/14 07:35:27PM
31 posts

The last turkey in the shop

General Discussions ( Anything Goes )

LAST TURKEY IN THE SHOPIt was Christmas Eve in Merthyr Tydfil and last minute shoppers competed against shoplifters and pickpockets to get their respective final Christmas present list completed.The Town Centre was vibrant and full of life, which in turn contrasted with the butchers shop run by local man Huw Atkins Cleaver.All around him - lay evidence of death.Cuts of blooded beef, were assembled neatly in the shop-front window, as enticement and invitations to treat to the general public.Inside on huge metal rails, hung whole pig carcasses (minus the heads) and a variety of game birds, all lifeless and limp which adorned the shop like feathered Christmas ornaments.Hugh waved his hand in a friendly gesture , as a regular customer shot passed the place on the narrow pavement.Unfortunately for Huw, the man standing on the opposite pavement, who was on a day trip from Bargoed , to see the Christmas lights Merthyr Council had lavishly put up, took his gesture as an insult.The angry hill dweller looked at the shop window and saw red, the hand signal was misinterpreted and he entered the shop doorway intent on further bloodshed. What do you mean sticking two fingers up at me! he said aggressively.Had he been from Merthyr Tydfil, he might known poor old Huw Atkins Cleavers circumstances and reacted differently. Im awfully sorry ! apologised the 12 year old Portuguese box-boy, Frey Bentos helping to gut the fresh fish. Poor old Hugh ... he only has two fingers left on each hand....he is the clumsiest butcher left trading in the town! he said.Hugh held up his hand to reveal the three missing digits and the Bargoed man apologised most profusely. Its not easy in todays modern world to make ends meat! he said cutting up a pigs arse...... I darent drop anything...I cant pick it up! he said in his frustration.The man left the shop feeling awful- trying to pick a fight with a man who was no longer able to count passed five (without taking off his shoes and white socks).The butchers shop called, I cant believe its not Tofu had been there since 1840 and he had run it almost single-handed ever since .Hugh himself was 186 years of age- and he claimed that his longevity was down to eating lots and lots of red meat.He followed his own the first- Atkins diet.But the real reason was that Huw had sold his soul to the devil- otherwise how else could you account for the fact the shop was full of dead flesh and not one single insect had ever been seen in the shop window.Which contrasted with the local delicatessen opposite, which in the Summer was full of the wee beasties.Once , Mad Dai from Aberfan had asked to buy two wasps from them.Dai was told in no certain terms that it was a delicatessen and not a pet shop. So why are they in the window? puzzled Dai.Huw knew that good hygiene was next to Godliness and also that the local Public Health Officers were rigid with their enforcement procedures as he had been last time they visited in 1841.The Soul Trader seemed to be in possession of a special secret when it came to flavouring his produce making his devilled meat in constant demand.Over the last 186 years, he had witnessed a whole range of strange events.When he started in 1840, he was asked to cater for the Wedding of the then Queen Victoria and her consort cousin Prince Albert.This had beefed up his business following the loss of trade caused by the stopping of Transportation to New South Wales.Prince Albert too was so impressed,he wanted to bestow a Royal patronage on him as Huw had inspired him to adopt his own version of what became the Prince Albert when he watched Huw pierce a Cumberland sausage with a metal hook whilst on a Royal visit to the Town.Prince Albert was also a member of the Beezelbub Club...whereby you could pay monthly for your meat....and Hugh ran a little red book to record the tick of certain customers who were involved in his various secret societies.There may have been the Free Masons...but these were the Expensive Butchers and his personal record was saved under Sir Loin in the Joint account ledger.It was not just Royalty who paid Lip service to Huws business...there were other celebrities like Mick Jagger...he had some sympathy for that old devil who kept coming back for his anti-ageing meat.1970s comedian Dick Emery too was hooked on his produce.He would often be spotted outside the shop window looking at the tasty displays of liver, kidneys and animal hearts licking his lips and uttering You are offal...but I like you!His business had flourished especially during the Second World War with his Black(Arts) Market as meat was in short supply.If he hadnt used those sacrificial lambs from his ceremonies, then the good people of Merthyr would have gone short.During these difficult times, Government rations included a portion of Snoek carved from a sea creature as a replacement for meat and the dreaded spam.Forces sweetheart, Vera Lynn was always asking for a portion from Hugh.In return, he used to keep it under the counter ready for her arrival- marked secretly Whale Meat again-.US star Rock Hudson too would visit his Welsh Butchers shop but insisted on one of his box- boys delivering his meat around the back- to preserve his secrecy.Over the years his business had made him a lot of money most of which was stuffed into his mattress at home ...together with half a dozen penny black stamps, he had bought from the Post Office as souvenirs when the shop first opened.His involvement with blood had started back in 1831, when his father, a former Chartist, had accidentally dropped his handkerchief on the blood of dead calf , after a rowdy mob of workers had bumped his arm during the Merthyr Riots- resulting in the poor bugger being transported to New South Wales- and Hugh the local workhouse.Back in 2011, he returned from his day dreaming and realised that it was nearly 4.00pm and he was to close early that day.Frey Bentos stood next to him, with the palm of his brown hand outstretched like Oliver Twist.Huw gave him a 5.00 note for his 40 hour working week. I suppose youll be wanting your Christmas Bonus then? asked Huw.Reaching into his top pocket, he pulled out a 1.00 coin and tossed it at the little Portugeezer. Youve worked hard this week ..take a couple of those green pork pies that are past the sell- by date...never mind the Food Safety Act...have them for Christmas dinner...on me lad! said Huw full of the Christmas Spirit.Frey Bentos clicked his heels and ran as fast as he could into the street with the difficult decision that most Merthyr people face.Did he spend it in one of the many Pound shops or gamble it in one of the three bookmakers or two casinos close by.Huw sat down, tired from his exhaustions at the age of 186 , he had worked 170 years longer than most of the current generation who frequent the aforesaid establishments.He looked around him- his face hid another dark secret even darker than his dabbling with the occult.His house in Pigs Alley Twynyrodyn had received an unwelcome visitor from the SS who promised to return unannounced.His nemesis was local man Dewi Gooder.He was diametrically opposed to Huw in every way.He was young and worked part-time for both the Social Services and as a Christian Evangelist Minister - whilst also being a full time Vegetarian.He believed like Morrisey (not Bernard) that Meat was Murder.He wanted a blanket ban on the animal carcass trade and was angling to stop the cruel sport of fishing next.He had turned up at Huws bungalow determined to poke his pointy hook nose into Huws business.Dewi couldnt believe that someone of Huws age could live independently and run a business effectively at the age of 186.His snooping and peering through the curtains of Huws bungalow- appropriately named The Shambles brought him his reward.In front of the fire , was a rug marked out in the shape of a pentagram.Now vegetarian Dewi wanted blood and a sacrifice of his own- that of Huw Atkins Cleaver.Huw had told him to mind his own business and leave him now it had become personal.The Veggie champion wasnt prepared to take any of Huws chops.He decided that he would arrange to clear the place while he was in work, fumigate it and incinerate the Century old mattress and place Huw in sheltered living accommodation, thereby exercising his powers on Earth.Huw sat on his own stool and took a bite out a remaining stale green pork pie and took a slug of Whisky.As the Winter evening closed in, the street turned silent and very dark.Due to the involvement of the Council busy-body Huw didnt want to go home.He cheerily wished himself a Merry Christmas out loud, as he started to use his new fangled bacon-slicer for the first time. Moo-ry Christmas to you too! said a strange voice.Huw mid slice looked up and in the direction the sound had came from. there anyone there? asked the butcher nervously. Moo-ry Christmas! repeated the dead cow hanging on a hook in the chilled back storeroom. Jesus .....a talking cow....? asked Huw more for his own benefit than the animal. My name isnt Jesus...said the Bovine...its Taurus! he repeated. As in the astrological sign? asked Huw patting the cow and in return receiving his own pat on the back. No, hes not a Taurus ...he was born in December- he- like me a Capricorn! replied the goat hanging next to him. Dont believe the pair of them ...they are talking bull-shit!! said the mutton dressed as lamb laying side on from the chopping block on the huge table near the entrance door. Have I turned into Dr Doolittle? asked Huw... Or is it that pie I ate!! Ive read Charles Dickens a Christmas Carol...but I didnt expect to be visited by three animal ghosts at Christmas! Huw mumbled. I didnt even know animals had souls! he said innocently. So why are you lot haunting me...I didnt kill any of you! replied Huw. I was killed by the Queen herself....up on one of her estates...said a game Bird hanging from the rail....and I was only in a minor car accident.......she said she had a Balmoral duty ...she snapped my neck and here I was not a pheasant experience I can tell you ! Stop grousing will you.. youre driving me mad! said CJD another cow. It was in all the papers....big conspiracy theories! continued the pheasant unabated.Huw noticed that the animals were becoming stronger in his focus and the background of his butchers shop was starting to blur- strange indeed. Well what about me....I was bloody kidnapped...held against my will and then disposed of without trace some years ago! said the horse Shergar. Shergar...Queens pheasants ....I am in good company...I know I had a Royal Patronage from Prince Albert & Queen Victoria some years ago...but I dont understand why you lot are scaring me like this....I dont sell horsemeat and Im not amused...! Huw replied. But you sold dog food back then didnt you! whinnied Shergar. You did ...! said Old Shep backing up the story, as the Blue Peter Dog stepped out of the shadows and cocked his leg up on the faggots and pees. It made me the fastest dog ever on the BBC ...but gave me galloping indigestion ...and I had to wait until John Cravens Newsround had finished before I could scratch the grass in the Blue Peter Garden! said the Dog equally not amused.Huw looked down and noticed that there was a trickle of blood on the floor amongst the sawdust. That Frey Bentos....Ill give him...missing this blood! he continued.A tapping of a coin on the front window made Huw turn around.It was Dewi Gooder, filming him talking to the carcasses. Ill get you put away if it is the last thing I do...! he said lowering his mobile phone video camera....using the last of his energy, the vegetarian mustered a smile...he knew he had his quarry where he wanted the sweetbreads.The front door was still unlocked and he trespassed into the shop.Dewi could see a trickle of blood leading from the bacon slicer which turned into a stream running down the leg of the ancient butcher. Ive caught you on film chop sing to the chops...that should be enough to get you sectioned...Ive just rung for police backup- the bacon will be here any second! Too late to get him! said a set of swinging sausages on a string. Sausages....are you really moving AND talking! asked Dewi stunned by what he was witnessing. Dont be so surprised ! said a dead headless chicken.... Thats just the swine flew talking! How can you dont even have a head! questioned Dewi. Oh, its not us talking...we are just merely instruments of the Devil...he is using us like a ventriloquist uses a dummy! said a sheep still bearing a pentagram in red dye on its exposed heartless body. Were just here to distract Huw until it is too late! bleated a sheep. Dewi ....doesnt know it yet...but hes all but dead...he cut off his own penis using the new bacon- slicer and is slowly bleeding to death....! said the Horned One stepping out from his camouflage of a hoofed pig carcass. I had his soul years ago...but his body was more resilient! the Dark Lord continued.Huw dropped his kecks and looked down at his own headless chicken. And I thought I had done rasher things! said Huw. Its you I after now! said the Devil threateningly.Dewi raised two sausages up from the meat rack and made them into an impromptu cross. Im not Dracula... you stupid man....I actually exist...that other do-gooder up there...he said pointing towards the Heavens....he gave you humans the right to do whatever you want with all animals...including eating them....and put Huws severed willy down...cos that wont save you!Huw, you know what to do... if you want to have that barbecue position I offered you...! said Beelzebub. Honest more porkies? asked Huw. Absolutely ...Im 100% Satan! was the evil replyWith the remainder of his strength Huw Cleaver picked up a huge knife and shuffled towards the Social Services man with his trousers and pants around his ankles he then handed the knife handle first to Dewi as to use it as protection from the Demon.Dewi grasped the knife with both hands but the zombie-like Huw just kept coming.The blade lodged in Huws lower stomach with blood spurting everywhere over the Council employee.He forced Dewis hand down and around ....creating a Silverside cut of the old mans genital regions.As Huw slumped to the floor, Gwent policeman number 666 Colin Allcars entered the shop with his sidekick Geraint Peeler in close pursuit. Ello, Ello Ello, whats all this then? said the horrified pair together.Holding up the remainder of poor Huw Cleavers genitals, Dewi heard himself say Would you believe.... the last turkey in the shop?
updated by @philip-evans: 11/11/15 10:39:11PM
Philip evans
03/24/14 09:02:18PM
31 posts

The weakest link short story

General Discussions ( Anything Goes )

Queen of Mean So on which caravan site in Wales do you come from? asked Anne Robinson to the contestant before her on the BBC Weakest Link television show. Nice one...its the former Iron & Steel Capital of the Principality Anne....Merthyr Tydfil! said Tina Big Tits from Twyn. Ever been to Wales Anne....theyd worship you there... after all you are a red dragon- our National Symbol! replied the streetwise Tina. Put your board up and hide those silicon monstrosities will you! ordered Anne. Why did you vote off poor Herriott? He like you was a stuck up cow! said Tina But who was the REAL Weakest Link in that round....and why have spelt Herriott without the H ignoramus? asked the Scouser. Was it ME Anne? ..... or did your autocue tell you that too....besides I aint no African animal ....I have dilsexia...! said the slapper. Sorry Herriott, despite being intellectually more superior than that trollop ...its votes that are the Weakest Link goodbye! said the flame haired presenter. So now youve made it by default to the last four Tina what do you do in your backwater Town of Merthyr? asked Anne. Were Welsh Anne, Im a pub singer, we drink and play rugby all day! came the sarcastic reply. Tell me Anne when they Arlene Phillips you from this show what are you gonna do then get a proper job....instead of professional autocue reader?Has anyone ever told you that your look like Harry Potters grandmother in those glasses , with that wizened old scrag neck of yours wouldnt even get passed quality control on the Bernard Matthews Turkey Farms...what its like to be passed your sell by date? replied Tina fit as a butchers dog only less attractive from the neck up.With the camera crew sniggering around her Anne , quickly moved onto the next round.After another display of vacant blondism and not getting a question correct Anne was still stumped as to how Tina could make it into the final three. So did you have the audacity to vote Tarquin here with his yellow cravat off the little bimbette? And why have you spelt Tarquin....Tampon...? asked Anne Cos...hes a stuck up twat! came the uncompromising reply. How do you do it? asked Anne. Easy ....said the tart pushing up her cleavage to the man is gonnavote me Pams off.... just Watch-Dog! said Tina.Google- eyed contestant Maximillan stood opposite her couldnt raise his eyes up to the cameras to object...nodding his head and retaining eye contact with the nipple line to whole time..... They may be full of fat and silicon but men love em! she announced to theflat- chested former consumer programme presenter slowly turning green with envy. Even Chinese Dominic here has been checking them out with his sly sideways glances! declared Tina shuffling her rack. What do you look like in the Mirror in the Morning? asked Orphan Annie. I dont buy that paper as the journalists even back in the 1860s made up the news themselves....isnt that right Anne....didnt you tap peoples telegrams too back when you were young? said Tina returning a backhand quicker than Steffi Graf.The quiz continued with the last person to be made to do the Walk of Shame to be determined from the three remaining contestants- Tina, Dominic and Maximillan.The round jingle went again, after another 2 minutes of intense quizzing- or in the case of Tina looking pretty for the camera. To take you into the Final Round....has Tina milked it for too long?... Has the Bell tolled for the Duller Lama ? ....Or has Max finally reached his zenith? Asked Anne grimacing a smile in doing so pulling up her socks by moving the muscles on her tight botox face.Tina lifted her board.... with the words Papa Dom thereon.Tibetist Monk Dominic put up his board with the words Maximammory printed in perfect English.Maximillian put up his and Dominic was history. Tina....why did you vote off know he wasnt the weakest link in that round? asked the presenter skin stuck up in a permanent smile under the hot lights like an extra from the Sci-Fi Movie V I couldnt vote for meeself could I...she said buffing her perfectly manicured Beauty Box Nails. Besides, he believes in reincarnation so hell get another chance on this show ...wont he? replied Tina. Max.....why have you kept Tina on the game when she hasnt got one single question right throughout the show? said Anne full of malice. you realise you just libelled me and Max by telling 10 Million BBC viewers that I am still on the game and Max here is my Pimp! said Tina. If you ever say that again....Ill kill you....and remember I am from Merthyr! warned Tina.Flustered and turning beetroot red like an Avenue De Clichy Traffic Light Anne announced to Dominic that it was time to disappear. You are the Weakest Chink ...goodbye! she declared. You racist bitch ! said Max joining in on the Queen of Mean. Can we edit that out? asked Anne gingerly, as her laughter lines disappeared quicker than you could say Anne Robinson..As they raced onto the final round it was amazingly 5-5 all as Tina seemed to be inspired to answer correctly all questions fired at her, as did Max trying not to look at his adversary as Tina spun her headlamps in a mesmerising manner. The questions are tied at 5 all which is amazing as that tart had the IQ of a BBC cameraman earlier ......she has played the game well....lets go to Sudden Death ! said Anne I warned you .....said Tina picking up a Shaolin numchuck left behind by the Monk- as it flew across the studio it struck the aged presenter in the plastic forehead wedging itself in the unmoving mass of pink fabric.Ever the professional, Anne continued to read the final deciding questions out.Max got his wrong.Tina asked Anne to repeat the question as Anne due to the head injury had reverted to her native Liverpudlian and could for some strange reason smell strawberry ice cream. Which 1960s pop band sang. Teach your Children and featured in the Soundtrack for the motorcycle road movie Easy Rider? asked the presenter sounding more like Jim Royal with every new word. Try saying it by keeping your false teeth from moving this time you old Scouse cow., about Crosby, Stills and Gnash! roared Tina. Call yourself the Queen of Mean....laughed Tina.....move over Granny theres a new Royal in Town!
updated by @philip-evans: 07/07/17 04:57:35AM