One for the road

June 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

He hadn’t meant for this to happen. It was only supposed to be a quick drink after work, just to take the edge off. He’s found himself doing that quite a bit, lately, taking the edge off the day before he goes home to her and her bloody mother. You can imagine what they’re like, gassing away, shouting to hear themselves over the television, and then when her mother finally goes home, they’ll be on the telephone for the rest of the night, his wife only breaking off to give him a bollocking about this or that. You’d want something, wouldn’t you? Before going home to that?

You think you’re invisible, a middle-aged man without much in the way of looks to start with, and you gradually fade into the background of your own life. Some people might think that sad, p’raps, but it means you can get away with all sorts. A look here, a glance there, and nobody’d even be able to describe you to the nearest six inches.

Trouble is, it seems the drink’s made him a reputation where he’d none before – that welcome in his usual haunts has been frostier of late, so he thought this evening that perhaps he’d try something new. A music night on down towards the bottom of town, by the big supermarket. He could even pick up some cans for the walk home.

One beer led to another, and this foreign lager’s strong stuff, it turns out. When he wakes it’s with a start; he’s been lolling in an awkward chair, drool hanging from one side of his mouth, and all these young women, all so nicely turned out, they’re all staring at him. Some repulsed, some laughing, not even bothering to hide it. The little bitches.

He thinks to himself that he’ll show them, he’ll make it clear it was all intentional, but the way he stumbles and has to catch himself on the way out only highlights that his evening was anything but.


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