Part of being an adult is knowing when to move on.
It can sometimes be a painstaking process because nobody wants things to end (that is unless it’s a certain house-esque particular room-based saga that will not be named for obvious reasons). An end is a sad time for all, a process which we are all prepared for at an early age and yet somehow still never manage to master it. What a sombre time to be alive.
Mr R. Brek died eleven years ago. I know this because it’s printed on his box. He has remained with me for all this time through now three job changes, two relationships and one pandemic (he was the emotional rock I needed when I was at my lowest). I don’t feel as though it is right to keep going though: he has served his purpose, he has provided a friendship that has never been in doubt and for all of this I think it is only fair that he is lain to rest. As in lain to rest for good now, properly. Over a decade and I’m still metaphorically flogging his corpse. This is not how you treat friends.
“Oh dear, English hearts are broken the world over. Mrs Goggins has missed her penalty meaning that England are knocked out by Germany. They will not make it past the semi-finals and Germany will go on to play the Czech Republic at Wembley Stadium.
Goggins looks gutted, a world on her shoulder and nothing to show for it. Our thoughts are with her at this most trying of times. There was nothing more she could do. I expect everyone in Greendale felt that.”
Warning: this post contains gratuitous scenes of exercise. Viewer discretion is advised.
This boy has been running now, jogging now, a bit of a mix of the two since the start of the year. Rogging arounds wrong so let’s stick with junning. I’ve been junning since January. I have dabbled in it in the past however nothing substantial. I suppose with a lot of things collapsing in on itself it’s only fair that one tiny thing in my life prevails in a positive and optimistic fashion.
Cut to Thursday night though when shit got real.
I prefer junning at night because there are less people around to point fun at the tiny shorts I wear. The temperature is at a steady balance, much better than slogging through ice and snow anyway. I start my jun and headed off in the direction of my route. This route has been planned to perfection i.e. it features very little uphill bits and mostly flat or downhill bits.
There is a housing estate close to where I live that I do a couple of laps of to warm up. As I approach the edge of it I’m feeling the juice, I’m feeling the jun through my veins so I decide to speed up a bit. Down the first street, right at the end there is a footpath which curves round a corner down to the next street. Bounding like a chopper I go, I approach the curve and this is where it all goes wrong.
There was no slow motion here, no events slowing in my brain or anything like that. It was a short, sharp pinch in the eyes as far as my recollection of events goes. One moment I was junning away, the next I’m lying on the ground with scrape marks on my legs and blood staining the palms of my hands.
Some little dear had left their scooter in the middle of the path, something which you couldn’t see because it was round a blind corner. Unless I had leapt 2 or 3 feet in the air I was going to hit it every time. Not a full size scooter, no no, something someone just out of toddler-dom would use. I have no concern for myself, my god, I must check that my electronic life partner is still okay! The phone is nestled snugly in my jacket pocket, safe and sound. I stagger to my feet to assess the damage under a dimly-li lamppost.
Now this is exactly the kind of thing that I would do to myself; I am no stranger to injuring myself in unusual circumstances. What really sealed it as an ‘Ian’ moment though was just as I turned the corner and collided with the scooter a teenage boy was walking up the path from the opposite direction. He daren’t touch me, for obvious reasons (following Bovona guidelines to a tee) but asked if I was okay which was nice. As I stood up to brush myself down and turn to start running again he called for my attention. To my confusion and astonishment the boy brought over the tiny scooter. “You forgot this.” Luckily the violently sarcastic part of my brain was sleeping at the time.
Unreasonable reaction: WHAT THE F*CK DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING, LAD? DO YOU REALLY THINK THAT F*CKING SCOOTER IS MINE? F*CK ME, I COULD BARELY GET ONE OF MY TOENAILS ON THERE LET ALONE A FULL F*CKING FOOT. I’M WEARING SHORTS, I’M OUT JOGGING. WHY THE F*CK DO YOU THINK A F*CKING 37 YEAR OLD MAN IS SCOOTERING AROUND AT 9PM ON A THURSDAY F*CKING NIGHT? DOES THAT SOUND SH*TTING PLAUSIBLE TO YOU?
Panting through the stinging in my hands, I merely said that it wasn’t mine and thanked him for his concern. There I was, stumbling in front of a member of the public only for him to believe that the situation was that much worse because I had embarrassed myself by failing to use a scooter properly. Remarkably my legs were fine, a gash on one knee and nothing more, so I carried on with my jun.
This is getting too long. I did consider that perhaps this was some kind of cosmic karma for something else. A balance had to be made by me making a tit of myself. The day after I was in agony. Some bruising to my right side meant breathing, coughing, you know, any kind of movement caused a little jolt of pain to explode under my ribs. I am on the mend after a few days of rest and hope to be back junning later on this week.
Pack your bag, grab a coat and head off with me to a mystical place, a place where only the brave may date to enter and only the fiercest survive. If you have the courage then perhaps you will make it to the very peak of n’cle.
In all honesty, I’ve never been to n’cle. It’s clearly listed on a lot of signs around here but whenever I head in the general direction it disappears. It is as though n’cle is more of a concept than anything else, it’s a state of mind. You don’t go to n’cle because you’re either there or you’re not. You can’t get there if you’re already there. Yeah, something deep and meaningful like that.
I have dreamt of hiring a helicopter and flying closely over the terrain in the hope of finding a physical, tangible thing. Perhaps n’cle is so small that only the locals know where it is. Perhaps it’s a stump in the middle of a dell, or a well, or a part of Hadrian’s Wall with a bad smell.
These are all theories though and none of which get me closer to n’cle. I will forever be chasing it, desperate to taste it, smell its goods and embed myself within its warm embrace. Embed? Definitely embed.
It would be quite fair to comment that I have done a bit of everything in my time on earth. Everything from washing machine repair man to fashion guru, I’ve been there, I’ve certainly done that and quite frankly I not only bought the damn t-shirt but procured the whole rack of clothes and displayed them in front of a multi-national crowd full of bigwigs and industry types.
So, what now? Where can someone with my set of skills possibly go except into space? It truly is the final frontier. I don’t know, it seems a bit too final to be shooting myself off into the unknown in the hope of finding a line of employment that could possibly compete with my bustling CV of “endless success”.
Last night I was trying to think about what else I could do, something that was within my grasps on planet earth which would negate the requirement for interstellar space travel (I’ve seen the figures and it is a smidgen too costly for me coppers) and do you know what my best idea was? What surged to the front of my mind to take centre stage, all my attention?
I was going to use my tiny man hands to fix tiny ant vehicles. I would put those years of “experience” fixing washing machines to help our friends, the ants, to get back on the road after serious accidents and engine failures. I’ve got discounts and payment plans set up for regular customers. There’s Bonbon in the back, he’s good with people and ants, and looks after the place when I have to make deliveries. Running a successful garage isn’t just about fixing stuff after all, it’s about customer service, a friendly face and lashings of car air fresheners.
I can’t tell what’s a good idea anymore. I may have finally *finally* gone over the edge in a barrel. That is, unless one of you could suggest something new that I could try?