Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Monday, 27 August 2012
Albert and the lion
On this rainy public holiday monday in the UK, an escaped lion wanders around the typically English countryside of Essex, and the day-trippers to Clacton-on-Sea look nervously behind them as they queue for ice-cream and chips. Nobody knows where it escaped from though. Some people just should not be allowed to keep lions at home.
I came very close to being imprisoned for assaulting a child the night before last, when a friend's little boy of about 3 years old, kept coming up to me and playfully spitting on the highest part of my seated body that he could reach, which was a recently washed pair of Giorgio Armani trousers at about knee-level.
I had repeatedly asked the lad to desist from this disgusting and anti-social behaviour, but I don't think he could have understood what the word 'desist' meant, or have lived long enough to appreciate the difference between acceptable conduct in public, and the sort which would have got me barred from the pub for at least a month.
You have to understand that the little lad looks - from the outside - like a juvenile angel, with long, curly blonde hair framing the face of Cupid. You have never seen such a cute-looking kid, and I say that as one who is in no way related to him. Of course, his parents know better, having lived with the little bastard for three years.
I tried to attract the attention of his parents (who are also extremely good-looking, which explains where the lad inherited his pleasing countenance), but they were too busy laughing and drinking with others to notice. It seemed churlish and mean to lodge a formal complaint after the deed was done - to inform on a child of that age would have been unforgivably snide, so I tried to deal with the matter myself by telling him to 'stop it' with greater and greater conviction.
At last, he began to run out of spit, but gathered as much as he had left in his mouth before taking a final run-up to launch it over my trousers one last time.
I held my hand out to keep him a little less than spitting-distance away from me as he approached, and the timing of lifting my arm to do so as he ran up, meant that he made smart contact with it and his momentum - combined with my moving hand - sent him flying backwards, and he landed flat on his back about six feet away from where I sat.
Unfortunately, his parents and everyone else (who had been unaware of the boy's spitting) only looked up in time to see what appeared to be a very large, elderly man swiping at a three year-old boy with such force as to send him flying through the air as if swatted by a giant.
The benefit of experience through age is that a 61 year-old man can think a lot quicker than a three year-old boy, and as the father looked at me in horror, I dropped my own look of horror at what I had accidentally done and quickly feigned the aspect of a man who had been mortally insulted, at the same time as sternly asking Dad to stop his boy from spitting all over me.
The dad immediately apologised to me and both parents dragged the unhurt boy to his feet, took him outside and gave him a stern talking-to.
A minute later, the little angel returned with his mother, and formally apologised for spitting on me, and I forgave him at the same time as apologising for for swiping him half way across the room, which - I tried to explain - was not an intentional act. His mother wisely said that this is what happens when you spit on people who are about 5 times your size. Sound advice, in my experience.
I am still at liberty, but - like spitting - I had better not make a habit out of it.