Thursday, 23 June 2016

Hawaiian Shirt Day is tomorrow

Tomorrow's the big day folks, the first National Hawaiian Shirt Day!
Traditions have to start somewhere, this one is starting here.

Monday, 20 June 2016

Hawaiian Shirt Day

This Friday, the last Friday in June, is Hawaiian Shirt Day


Saturday, 18 June 2016

Hawaiian Shirt Day -

The UK doesn't have a national Hawaiian Shirt Day.

This is wrong.

I propose we sort this out. From 2016 onwards, the last Friday of June shall be Hawaiian shirt day.

Why this date? Well traditionally summer starts at the summer solstice so generally the last Friday of June will be the first Friday of Summer.

Also next week a few people will probably need a bit of cheering up.

Let's make this happen.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Flash Fiction - Cake

"And then he gave me some cake."
"Sorry, what?"
"He gave me some cake. It was in a Tupperware in his bag. Said he'd been taking it in for his team at work but I might as well have it. To sort of say sorry I think. You know, for the inconvenience."
"I see. What happened then?"
"Well, he climbed over the fence and I stood there like a chump for a moment before getting back on and calling you lot."
"You didn't try and stop him?"
"What did you expect me to do? Wrestle him to the ground and throw him over my shoulder? He weren't a big guy but he's not much smaller than me.
"And he'd already made it pretty clear that he wasn't getting back on the train."
"How so?"
"Well, he said, "I'm not getting back on." But it was the way he said it. Like it wasn't up for debate. And he had a bit of a scary look in his eye."
"A scary look?"
"Yeah, sort of like he was on drugs but not really. Just that getting in his way wouldn't be a good idea. Look the guy who pulls the emergency stop on a train then just gets off and walks off into the countryside clearly has some issues, right? Besides which, he'd left track-side so I was hardly going to pull him back onto railway property was I?
"You'll have him on CCTV anyway right?"
"Probably, but you'd be surprised about how little help that is sometimes. Cameras are old, pictures are grainy and at the wrong angle, and we're looking for a normally-dressed, average-size, brown-haired Caucasian male carrying a laptop bag..."
"Yeah, sorry about that. I'd know him again if I saw him, but to describe him...? Well, he could be me or you or half the people who've walked past that window."
"Do you know where he got on?"
"Not a chance. With cancellations it was heaving on there, I never made it down the carriage."
"Okay, I understand. Thanks for your help. We'll be in touch if we get anything."
"Can I eat it?"
"The cake; can I eat it? Well, share it with the team..."
"Yeah, go ahead, knock yourself out. What kind is it?"
"Banana and chocolate chip."

"Leave us a bit."

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Flash Fiction - Walking

Sometimes I wonder what would happen if I just didn't stop.

Standing here with my forehead pressed against the glass I wonder what would happen if the doors opened and I didn't get off, didn't go home, have my dinner, sink into the sofa, drag my lazy arse into bed, set the alarm to go through the whole rigmarole again tomorrow.
What if I stepped back, away from the doors, let the train pull my weary carcass the wrong way out of the station and north.
Not that you can go that far north. It's not that big an island. But that doesn't really matter. It's not about that. It's about what would happen if I got off where the train stopped and just kept walking.
I used to hand out catalogues in Amsterdam station; when you looked at the destinations scrolling up the board you couldn't escape the fact that you were at one edge of a continent. One train to Moscow, one more train to Vladivostok and you've crossed half the globe.
This train terminates in Middlesbrough. It's not quite the same. In fact it's a shithole. But you probably know that already.
We're not even moving. Waiting for a platform to become available apparently. Eleven bloody platforms at that station and I bet there's not ten other trains there when we get in.
What would happen if I got off in Middlesbrough and kept walking. Just kept going until I disappeared. Can you even disappear in this country? There's CCTV everywhere but it would take a while to find me on the cameras. They wouldn't be looking for me on Teeside. And in Leeds I'd be just another knackered, middle-aged office worker shuffling through the daily routine, one of thousands going through the grey commute. Tens of thousands maybe?
There must be some pretty empty areas of Northumbria where a man could disappear? Just walk out onto the moors, dig a hole, make a shelter, steal a sheep.
I've not even got a coat with me. I'd be dead in a week.
Maybe I should head south?
Pack a few different things in the rucksack tomorrow morning, head to the station as usual, then London, the south coast, a ferry, and then start walking?
Harder to find.
And it would mean I wasn't so tired I'm falling asleep standing up.
Empty the bank account.
Keep to the back roads and minor rail lines.
Head south, France, then Spain. I bet you can disappear there. No job. No rent. No jammed in like sardines for two hours a day in an overheated cigar tin. No fighting your way through the barriers because the machines don't work properly. No performance appraisals. No stretch targets. No desperate clinging on.
Just walk away.
Walk away.
And we're moving again.
Back into the station. Back into the routine. The rut. What did Nick say? "The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth."
Walk away.
Just walk away.