Yes indeed. Today marks my 200th post.
Who would have thought it? AND I have still got plenty of crap up my sleeve – if you will pardon the expression.
Now I have thought long and hard (as if) about how to mark this auspicious occasion, and come to the conclusion that of late, I have been guilty of a ‘lowest common denominator’ approach to posts. Too Low Brow. And not enough references to Parkinson’s.
So, Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls here is your 200 special: A double header; comprising ‘Thought For The Day’ plus a dip into the ‘Sitting Comfortably’ archive for a personal favourite; a glimpse at an often overlooked contemporary issue ‘The Post Modern Male’ and Body Image’.
“THE POST MODERN MALE AND BODY IMAGE” or “MIRROR MIRROR”
Warning! Contains male nudity of a graphic nature and Sheffield accents. May be unsuitable for those of a nervous disposition.
This is the tale of Jinks’ anus. I will never forget him telling me this story and the helpless laughter it left me with, and for which I only have to recall the story’s dénouement to have it re-kindled.
Jinks, despite being from ‘Sheff’ (Sheffield) was a smashing bloke. Bit of a nuisance when he was drunk; but then so are a lot of people. He had a tendency to square up to, or a wish to discuss the finer points of issues with Lads (and sometimes Ladies) of considerably bigger build, and who seemed to have an air of greater ‘combat experience’ behind them. He was never a great-looker, bless him (Use these words to form a sentence of your own: Pot, Black, Call, Kettle) the last time I saw him, he wore baggy army surplus trousers, a Sex Pistols T-shirt and a denim jacket. His head was shaved, revealing an angry lunar landscape of spots, blackheads and acne scars. A long spike of hair, bleached, sprouted from a point to the front of his crown, and for the most part dangled down over his eyes and face.
“Did I ever tell y’t’ story of when I saw me oan arsehole?” He asked one day in the pub, apropos of nothing.
“Well, I were on’t’ bus comin’ oam fr-fr- fr-fr- frum college one dinner time…” (he stammered too)
I was immediately hooked and listened intently.
“Aye, I were on this bus, when I thowat: Y’ knurr, twenteh too yeayurs on th-th-th-th-this planet and I’ve n-n-n-n-n-never seen me oan arsehole.”
Then and there, Jinks resolved to do something about it. He hatched a plan. What sort of bizarre meanderings and tortured thought processes lead a human mind to close focus of such an issue is beyond me. However, unimpeded by such concerns, the intrepid Jinks prepared to alight.
At his stop, he scuttled down the stairs and off the bus. He quickly covered the quarter of a mile or so to his house.
“Twelve-thirty: brilliant, me Mum won’t be ‘oam till at least wun. Should be perfect!” he thought to himself as he glanced at his Tintin watch
He described reaching home, hurridly unlocking the front door, and racing straight up the stairs into the bathroom.
Once in, he threw off his jacket. The bathroom, though clean and tidy, was small and poky. The only mirror was that on the front of the vanity unit placed high on the wall, adjacent to the sink. Now this was going to be tricky, it would require nerve, balance and more than a little agilty. Not to worry! Our Hero had done his planning and, after feverishly unbuttoning, dropping and stepping out of his pants, naked from the waist down, he began his ascent. Careful!… one foot on the basket that housed spare toilet rolls, old newspapers, and inexplicably, a can of WD 40. Good! … it did’t give. A step up with the other foot onto the window ledge. Easy! The fan light was open causing the net curtain to play in the fluttery wind. This was the big one … Ready? One, two, three … Hup! Other foot into the ‘soap space’ corner of the sink, behind the tap … Will it hold my weight? …. Yyyyeeessss! Done it!
I recall the expession on his face as he reached this pivotal point in his recounting of the whole tale: a mixture of triumph and relief.
“At last! The Holy Grail!” (His words!) “I could see me oan arsehole!”
He should have taken more notice of the open window, for no sooner had his face of triumph clouded with revulsion at what he beheld in the mirror than the bathroom door (which in his haste he had forgotten to lock) swung open, and his Mum walked in.
“Jeremy!” She screeched “What on EARTH are you doing….?”
“I’m br-br-br-br-brushin’ me teeth Mum!”
“THOUGHT FOR THE DAY”
I got to thinking (as you do) what would have happened had James Parkinson and Thomas Crapper been swapped at birth?
Parkinson would have invented the Water Closet and people would still giggle and make jokes about ‘going for a Parkie’, but I would still have a crappy disease.