The Higgledy-Piggledy Slipper Debacle


Here’s the story of shyness, flying objects, and my horticultural skills.

So, mum threw a slipper at me this week. I don’t think what I did warranted a slipper being thrown at me, though. I mean, if it missed, I would’ve quite easily been able to forget about it. But the fact was, it hit me right on the end of my nose. This proved a couple things. One, mum is a surprisingly good shot. And two, she really can’t take a joke. She came in my room, looked over at my television and asked me, “What are you watching?” “The television”, I replied. “Ooh, you little…” And then came the slipper! Father, who’s been married to mum for 40 or so years, later said to me, in response, “You’re brave…” And he should know. Mum once threw a plate of fish and chips at him from several yards away. It missed, but I suppose there are less tasty things to have thrown at you…

She’s a nice person. Usually. And the slipper was in jest. We’re a bit more physical with our comebacks here in Yorkshire. I have been hit by many flying objects over the years, but the slipper was a first and the worst. I think before that, the worst was a wooden ruler. Yes, wooden. None of that modern plastic malarkey in Yorkshire. Oh no, wait. I was once hit on the head with a flying water bottle, filled to the brim with one pint of water. That hurt. That really hurt. I think. It’s all a bit hazy…

When I say flying, I mean it was thrown at me. Not that it had sprouted wings and decided to attack me. I’m not sure how a water bottle would sprout wings; if I’m being honest, it’s not something I’ve not thought about before. Or why, more to the point, this flying water bottle would attack me. You know, the more I explain what I actually meant and what I didn’t actually mean the more convinced I become that you already knew what I meant…

I still don’t know why somebody would throw a water bottle at me. Or a ruler. Or a slipper. Maybe I just have ‘one of those faces’. I once had a golf club thrown at me. I don’t know a lot about golf, so I can’t give you specifics. It was a beaut, though. Big metal end. I got a good enough look at it as it whizzed past my face. That was an overreaction. I mean, I’d ruined his shot, but there was no need for that. That would’ve been the worst thing thrown at me if it had actually hit me. I would’ve fallen backwards, too, into a stream and be carried away by the water, probably ending up on some remote beach. And I’d be pecked to death by vultures. Oh, wait, we don’t have them in England. Do we? I don’t know. What do we have? Pigeons. Yes. I’d be pecked to death by pigeons. And that’s why I don’t like golf.

It wasn’t my fault I ruined the golfer’s shot. I only snuck onto the course with a group of idiots who had an airhorn and did what you’re probably imagining they did with it. How was any of that my fault? Excuses didn’t work. “It’s the quickest way to the allotments”, I said, pointing to the allotments, which, now I think about it, was a stupid place to put them. I don’t think anyone believed a 16-year-old would have an allotment…

For any Americans reading, I think you call an allotment a ‘community garden’ or ‘allotment garden’. I think they differ from ours. Ours tend to be tens and tens of very small plots of land over a small area. They’re usually cramped and crammed in, all higgledy-piggledy. They have a small greenhouse or shed, usually wooden and rundown, and have fences surrounding them. Full of greenery and plants, usually overgrown. The greenhouse or shed often has a radio and a chair, and is often where men go to escape the wife on a Sunday afternoon. Most towns and cities in the UK have a couple of these, usually in the centres or thereabouts. I think I would’ve actually quite liked one as a teenager…

It would’ve been a great place to take a girl. She’d be well impressed with my daffodils. Not a euphemism. And my potatoes and whatever the hell else people grow in allotments. I presume teenage girls are impressed by good horticultural skills.

I’m not sure what it takes to impress a girl, and considering I’d put ‘gardening’ on that list, I think it’s easy to see why I’ve never had and probably never will have a girlfriend. Not to mention the fact I’m useless with people.

I was on another course, this week. Oh, man. What a disaster. I think my shyness is getting worse by the second. It got so bad this week there were days when I didn’t want to get up to go to that course because I didn’t think I could be around people without feeling so self-conscious and afraid. It’s why I like talking to you guys. It’s easy to forget you have a voice when you’re a quiet weirdo.

The slipper throwing was a bad start to the week. Then it got worse with the course debacle. And then one of my relatives was hospitalised after falling incredibly ill due to her cancer. I haven’t had the best of weeks, so I apologise for not being in my usual cheery mood. The way things are going, it wouldn’t surprise me if my toothbrush exploded next time I brushed my teeth. It has been making funny noises lately…

Lent started this week. It puts things into perspective. The local Cannon Monseigneur Father (long story) encouraged us to take something up for Lent, rather than give something up. I think he meant going to Church more, not ‘take up robbing banks’. I’m struggling to think of anything, if I’m being honest. The best I’ve come up with is ‘take up ducking when mother comes near me’…

But the point remains valid. You gotta take things up in life, haven’t you? Gotta be brave and make choices your brain is telling you are illogical but you know, in your heart, are correct. It’d be nice if everyone made that kind of effort. You know, say hello to that one person in the canteen at work who always sits by themselves. That would be a good thing to take up. We shy ones aren’t always very responsive, but just saying hello would mean the world to that one person, even if they don’t show it. I think we need more people like that in our world, because some days, for us introverts, are unimaginably difficult.

But, as I always say, next week is a new week. Anything can happen.

Although I sure hope whatever happens to me doesn’t involve a flying slipper…

American author, Jarod Kintz (b. 1982), once said, “Learning how to love is like learning how to tie your shoes, and that’s precisely why I wear slippers.”

Peace Out :|:

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post. You can leave a comment and/or like this post below, or by clicking the title on the top of this post if you are on the archives page. Likes and follows greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Please feel free check out the latest posts from my other two blogs:

To Contrive & Jive
New Posts Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday
Click Here to Read the Latest Post

Hark Around the Words
New Posts Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday
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