The Quiet Little Con Monkey


Here’s the story of feeling chipper, ordinariness, and nincompoops.

It might not come as much of a surprise that a week that started with me walking into a wheelie bin ended with me cutting my foot open. Oh, and in the middle, mum came at me with a pair of scissors. Oh, and I had a migraine. I mean, after the wheelie bin incident, I started furiously rubbing my lucky monkey, but it just didn’t work. Almost as if that small wooden statue was sold under a false pretence in some shady foreign market by an equally as shady fella looking for some quick cash. Surely not. But… but – it says ‘lucky monkey Lanzarote’ on the bottom and there are lots of gold painted coins and he has his hands over his ears and – it’s a con, isn’t it? Ah, well. He’s still darn cute. I must stress, mum was cutting my hair, but a person who does that whilst squinting and with a tongue hanging out, isn’t a person who fills you with much confidence…

I don’t know how I walked into a wheelie bin. I got off the bus and a cyclist, those mad, mad bastards, came hurtling down the pavement toward me. “Watch out, you prick!” he kindly shouted at me. “Excuse me, you’re not even meant to be on the bloody pavement, you nincompoop!” I know. I was too harsh on him. Distracted, it was inevitable, somewhat, that I would collide into a wheelie bin. Well, only plastic. Not like one would absolutely wreck one’s hand and not be able to move it for the rest of the day. Ahem.

On top of that, I had to deal with a migraine. I got through an entire day with a chicken guy coming in to alter his menu for the billionth time and then I had a bus to catch home. ‘Ah,’ I thought. ‘Home soon – nice and quiet night ahead.’ Nope. Blinding agony on the bus home. I saw things I’m struggling to describe. Swirls of electric blue waves crashing and colliding into purple lighting, creating a multitude of psychedelic explosions of colour, some soft in appearance, others harsh and discordant. I was a ship in a sea of voltage and terror. And then, a most foul whirlpool of chaos and disorder enraptured me and pulled me beneath the waves. Struggling to breathe, sick as a goat and as dizzy as a kite, I started to fall. Constantly, for what felt like hours, through a maze of crashing glass, each one a colour unbeknownst to I, thrown around, beaten and bruised. And all the while, those vile and sickly colours, bright yellows and other garish confabulations, flashing at me like a strobe light of doom. If you’ve never had a migraine before, all that might sound a tad trippy and perhaps cool. Oh, no. No, no, no. I would rather catch my dingle in my zipper than go through that again. Yet it was migraine number 10 of the year. 10 times I’ve been through that. It’s just wonderful. No, not that. Awful. That. I’m always getting those two words mixed up…

I had to get off a bus and walk home with practically no vision. Not easy. But, you know what I say. Always look on the bright side of life. The next day is a new day. Sure, I’ll be incredibly vulnerable to more migraines in the following weeks, but it’s a new day. Nothing could possibly ruin it – oh, the frickin’ chicken guy is back. Sigh.

Come Friday, he still isn’t happy with it. Never mind, said the boss. I have a new menu for you to get on with. I met that guy on Friday. Much nicer than that other guy. Really likes what I’ve done so far. It’s nice to be appreciated. I don’t ask for much. I’ve never asked for anything. I could’ve been in that ocean as the Titanic was sinking, knowing full well I can’t swim, and I still wouldn’t ask for anything. In fact, people who know me would struggle to tell those who don’t what I sound like. I’m like a quiet little con monkey with his hands over his ears propagating false hope, like a useless little sod. Just a random thought I had. Anywho…

I also got word this week that another flyer I designed has received rave reviews, so much so that they want a few more printing and a few changes. I say ‘a few more.’ 50,000. As a shy person, you might think this fills me with utter dread. Not really. I don’t think people who aren’t shy realise how detached and compartmentalised shy people are. When I’m designing, I don’t think, ‘Hundreds of people are gonna see this.’ I think, ‘Ooh, isn’t that pretty?’ It’s probably the way shy brains cope with daily ordinariness. If we were normal, we wouldn’t be able to design something like a menu because our brains would be screaming at us, constantly, that a bazillion people are going to see it and they’re all gonna hate it and think you’re the absolute worst. So our brains shut off that annoying little voice and let you get on with things. Panic about the reaction later on. God knows what’ll happen when I get my first bad review. I’ll probably melt. Still, better than dying on the toilet.

I’m really happy with this work experience at the moment. As I left on Friday, the boss called over my other colleagues to have a look at what I was doing. “That’s proper mint that, like,” said one. I’m not entirely sure if that’s a good thing. Sounds it. I’m not really down with modern parlance. To me, ‘that’s proper mint’ makes me wonder how, whilst designing a menu, I’ve managed to design a plant. I mean, I was shooting for a menu, but okay…

By the middle of the week, I’d decided to ask mother to cut my hair. I have very long hair brushed over the top of my head, but it had gotten passed my shoulders and that’s not a good look for a boy. It’s now just below my ears. I quite like the job mum has done. Even though, during the cut, I did have my eyes closed because last time she did it, she nearly cut my ear off. Well, it’s cheaper than going to the salon.

Nobody at work noticed. Hmm…

Come Friday, I was feeling chipper for once. Then, of course, I walked into my homemade wooden computer table and nicked a vein in my foot. The massive amount of blood now flowing out of my foot was alarming at first, I will admit. Mum wasn’t happy. She’d just washed that floor. “ALLY, THERE’S BLOOD ALL OVER THE FLOOR!” “MUM, MY FOOT IS RED – IT’S NOT SUPPOSED TO BE THAT COLOUR!” I couldn’t walk properly for three days. I had a limp. Never had a limp before. Didn’t enjoy it. At least I have a really cool scar now, though. I hear chicks dig scars. Not on the feet, though. I mean, I don’t think many women would appreciate me getting my foot out on a date.

Still, the world isn’t so bad, is it? It was pouring down on Friday. I cannot begin to tell you how wet I was. I was soaked through. My socks were sodden. My shoes were like swimming pools for really small mice. My jeans were stuck to my legs, and they had turned a dark shade of blue, almost navy. My t-shirt had suffered a similar fate. My hair, my new do, was stuck to various parts of my face. And my glasses were milky white, they were covered in so much rain. It was unrelenting. A torrent that didn’t stop for hours. I got off the bus and within seconds, I was a shivering wet wreck. I have to cross one main road to get home. No crossings on it. No traffic lights, no zebra crossing, no pelican crossing – nothing. I was stood by the side of that road knowing I’d be stood there waiting for the traffic to clear for, probably, hours. Getting wetter and wetter. And you know what happened? I was there for five seconds when two cars in both lanes stopped to let me cross. Aww. How lovely. I almost had a tear in my eye. Hard to tell with all the rain. How utterly lovely. After all the shit that’s been thrown at me this week, that little thing cheered me right up.

So you see, some people aren’t wankers. There are good people out there.

Except that chicken guy…

English art critic, art patron, draughtsman, watercolourist, social thinker and philanthropist, John Ruskin (1819-1900), once said: “A little thought and a little kindness are often worth more than a great deal of money.”

Peace Out :|:

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

To Contrive & Jive
New Posts Every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday
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