Stranger than Fiction
There are moments in time where fiction is made all the more stranger by events that ‘really did happen.’ The following is a modified transcript of events related to me in a pub on Chancery Lane on Wednesday night. Only the names and a few pertinent details have been changed… Not to protect the innocent but to make things just a little funnier.
TREVOR: So, anyway, then she starts going on about her cat.
SUSIE: Her cat?
TREVOR: A chocolate-point Siamese called â€˜Edgar.â€™
SUSIE: Edgar? She calls her cat â€˜Edgar?â€™
TREVOR: Yup. And no, I couldnâ€™t prise the reason for that out of her either. Anyway, she then spends about forty minutes telling me about the animal. Likes and dislikes, food preferences.
SUSIE: Thatâ€™s a lot of time on one cat.
TREVOR: She even had photos of it on her cellphone. And not just a couple; about twenty of the damn things.
SUSIE: And youâ€™re worried that sheâ€™s invested too much into her cat?
TREVOR: Well, yeah. Women with cats… Itâ€™s obviously taking the place of something in her life.
SUSIE: I own a cat.
TREVOR: Yeah, well, thatâ€™s different. I donâ€™t want to shag you.
SUSIE: Thank the gods. Oh, hereâ€™s the other half. And donâ€™t make that tired old joke.
ROBERT: Trev. Susie, dahlink. Whatâ€™s happening?
SUSIE: Trevor here has been telling me about a cat-obsessed woman who he may or may not be dating.
ROBERT: Compensating for something, is she?
SUSIE: That means nothing. Robertâ€™s almost as clueless as you are. Donâ€™t I get a kiss, darling?
ROBERT: Women who obsess over animals are compensating for something they havenâ€™t got. Itâ€™s just a fact of nature, like men getting hard-ons whilst watching fast cars. Anyway, Trev, how goes the adoption?
SUSIE: Adoption? Oh, that Brazilian charity thing you ended up going to.
TREVOR: Hmm… I was hoping that no one would remember that.
ROBERT: Well, go on, give us the goss.
SUSIE: Yeah. Leave no detail unturned, no matter how embarrassing. In fact, the more embarrassing the better.
TREVOR: So, I ended up going to this charity thing that my work had donated a very large sum of money to. You know, free drinks with rich people trying to make themselves feel better about their wealth by giving away tiny bits of it to small nations whose GDP works out to be their childrenâ€™s pocket money. Anyway, thereâ€™s one of those auctions at the end and my boss, incredibly drunk off a couple of shandies, starts bidding on anything that comes up. Wow, I thought, after the third win, there goes any chance of a holiday bonus this year. This goes on for a while; heâ€™s buying basically anything that the auctioneer puts up.
Then comes what I suppose, if the event had been French-themed, would be called the piece-de-resistance. A brace of fighting cockerels. Well, my boss goes wild over this one. The bidding started at…
SUSIE: They were auctioning off fighting cockerels? And this was a charity event?
TREVOR: Well, I suppose you could call them reformed fighting cockerels. Itâ€™s a big sport over in Brazil and even there itâ€™s thought to be pretty much barbaric. The charity had liberated a brace of these cockerels and were auctioning them off. I suppose they were expecting some home gardener to buy them.
ROBERT: But it was your boss.
TREVOR: I was getting to that…
ROBERT: The boss whose home is a penthouse apartment.
ROBERT: Who hasnâ€™t cooked a meal for himself in twenty years and…
TREVOR: Yes, I know all of that. Can I go on? Thank you. So he bids on the cockerels and wins, again. At the end of the night the compere comes over and gets the boss to sign on everything, which is all normal and what. Then, somewhat surprisingly, the cockerels are brought to the table. Five of the things, looking a bit manky I must say. The boss, drunk as the drunkest thing ever, stares at them for about five minutes. They stare back; none of them making any noise. Itâ€™s a bit scary, actually. Even though theyâ€™ve been brought to us in cages you canâ€™t help but think that these animals were bred for fighting and thatâ€™s what they might just do if someone doesnâ€™t break this staring deadlock.
Then, as if the entire event had never happened, the boss stands up and says â€˜You lot take care of these, will you. I need to get home to my bed.â€™ By the time itâ€™s sunk into our somewhat inebriated brains that we now have five cocks to take care of heâ€™s gone and left.
Well, obviously no one actually wants to take any of them home. We all give obvious excuses and then start inventing them. Alice claimed that her aunt, who lives with her, is petrified of chickens because her husband died as a result of them. Todd claims that he lives with a hoodoo man who will sacrifice in the middle of the night to his dark and pagan gods. I claim that my backyard has recently reverted to a swamp and thus it just wouldnâ€™t be safe for the chickens. Of course, no one actually believes anyoneâ€™s excuse and so we end up agreeing to take one home a-piece.
SUSIE: And now youâ€™re the proud father of a fighting cockerel.
ROBERT: Which is sure to â€˜wowâ€™ the ladies. Come back to my place and Iâ€™ll show you my…
TREVOR: Oh, and how I havenâ€™t heard that one a lot in the last few days.
ROBERT: But itâ€™s funny?
TREVOR: Only the first twenty times.
SUSIE: So, when are you seeing the cat-lady again?
TREVOR: Next week. Friday night. A little Soho theatre bar I know.
ROBERT: Not taking her to the usual smoky boozer then.
SUSIE: I think he learnt his lesson the last time. So, do you like this woman?
TREVOR: You mean, aside from my obvious worries about the cat?
SUSIE: Yeah. Aside from your weird obsession about her cat obsession. Do you like her?
TREVOR: I gotta say I do. Smart, sexy, just a little ditzy in that cute way.
ROBERT: Do I hear the pealing of wedding bells? I think I do.
TREVOR: Hardly; weâ€™ve only been out the once…
SUSIE: But youâ€™re not agin, are you? Youâ€™re willing to give it the old British try.
TREVOR: I think so. Iâ€™ll try not to scare myself off this time.
ROBERT: What about the cat, though? If she talks about it all the time imagine living with her talking about it to it all the time…
TREVOR: Well, if that happens then I suppose I will just have to introduce her pussy to my cock.