The Demographic Shift - 92
I was mid flow when Susan nudged me in the ribs, which she likes to do sometimes for a multitude of reasons that are sometimes hard to decipher, so really, how was I to know that I should stop talking and look up? I mean seriously.
I was in full flow, talking as I was, about one of my current favourite subjects: my kitchen, which is currently a 13ft by 26ft shell of emptiness (bar a hosepipe coming out of one wall and dangly electrical cables) having been completely gutted by the builder (who I haven't seen for a week, but I'm hoping that's just a small thing), which means that I'm sort of living out of the dining room where the new kitchen, fridge freezer and microwave all currently live and hoping that one day soon I'll have super shiny kitchen that will allow me to cook food (rather than heat it –I'm just not made out to be a steamerless and wokless microwave man).
Anyway, I digress, so by the time I worked out what all the nudging was about it was way too late to escape as DTDG was standing right in front of me.
I hate bumping into people that errr, you know, who you used to bump with. Bump with? Who says that? Possibly no one.
"What? Stop nudging…oh."
"Oh," echoed Susan.
DTDG is sort of smiling and is definitely about to say something, but before she does she glances over her shoulder to the guy who is waiting to be served at the bar who is sort of tall with that Richard Ashcroft longish, darkish and slightly lankish hair that says "I'm t a bit of a rocker". Boy do I hate that look.
I loved Urban Hymns as much as much as anyone else. Bitter Sweet symphonies are a personal favourite, but really everything he has done since is total drivel. His last effort was hilariously reviewed in The Guardian (and if you haven't read it) you must.
Oh my point is Richard Ashcroft sucks and really who would date an Ashcroft look-alike? Okay lots of people, fair enough.
Anyway, finally DTDG says something.
"So what are you doing here?"
After she says that I immediately have a number of options, which is bad as like restaurant menus I go to pieces under the oppression of multiple choices.
I could have been polite, courteous and friendly. Or I could have been cutting, glib and bitter, but really to myself sounding a little cool. Finally, of course, I could be totally lame.
I always desperately aspire to be sort of cutting in situations like this, but while it works perfectly with a little rehearsal in my head when I actually step up to the plate, kick some dust and take a swing it all goes oh so wrong. This is a classic example of said situation all going a bit Pete Tong.
"Oh you know Waiting for the New Brunette, the Sirens Call, Godot the usual."
I know, I know, but for a split second, in my head, before the words actually left my mouth, it sounded really good. I thought: genius, I'd managed to work in a Billy Bragg Song, a New Order song and Samuel Beckett. I mean how good was that exactly?
DTDG looks at me for a second and gives me one of those looks that people give you that only mean one thing "I'm trying to workout why I went out with you, but I can't" and then turns around and walks off towards the bar and the Richard Ashcroft alike without another word.
"Oh dear Gord," says Susan, "that was so lame, I can't believe you just said that."
I nod, I know it was incredibly lame, but I couldn't help myself.
"I know, but in my defence I really never claimed not to be lame."
"Oh that's lucky. That was so lame you could probably be elected president of Lame Land and really as a defence its not at all good."
"I have a question though, why?"
"I couldn't help myself, I thought it would sound cool."
"Cool? I think you missed the cool park by a lame mile and gained free entry to the Lame World of Adventure."
Susan was really running with the whole lame idea, but it made me laugh all the same, a theme park devoted to Lameness? I was suddenly reminded of the Dolly Parton girl.
"Okay, I know, lame, I couldn't help myself. I saw Richard Ashcroft and it was all over."
"Richard Ashcroft is good looking. I thought her Ashcroft alike was cute."
"Oh thanks for your loyal and oh so wavering support."
"Gord you know, I'm always elsewhere for you," she smiled, "besides I'd always wondered why you were never ever friends with people you've been out with and now I know. It's because you are incredibly lame. Your Lame Boy, not sure you would be able to catch many supper villains – lameness not being all that potent a superpower."
"Okay, okay, enough already, it's true, I'm stricken by a terrible streak of extreme lameness, but to be fair, I'm usually quite amusing beforehand."
"Amusing then lame…right."
"Look, I could have been cutting and bitter…and that would have been worse."
"No, bitter would have been much much better. Hemmingway was bitter. Interesting people are bitter, not so much with the lame though."
"Suze, I hate to break it to you, but bitter is better? Come on."
"Waiting for the New Brunette?"
I wince it's like hearing your voice played back on a tape.
"But she is a brunette…and …and I'm sort of waiting, you know, so to speak."
Susan shakes her head, not even slightly buying my poor excuse.
"The Siren's Call?"
I wince again.
"Okay, it's not New Order's best effort, fair enough, but…"
"Okay, point taken, in future, I will only be bitter."
Susan smiles at this.
"A boy after my own heart."