Read The Lines

Recording the third CD for my English school, I had to utter the following ditty. “I like coffee, I like tea, I like boys and boys like me.” This will be given to every student in the school. I’m beginning to think these CDs are part of some practical joke as the stuff I’m having to say is getting exponentially more ridiculous. Before I go the boss wants me to record Disc 4, which will probably include a section on molesting animals.

I had a great battle of wits with a young Shanghai ‘gent’ the other day. Despite my whinging I was caught standing on either side of the yellow line on the escalator. The thing is, it was empty and I was zoned out on my ipod. The ‘gent’ tapped me on the shoulder. I quickly shuffled to the side and made my apologies. But the gent persisted. He bent down and tapped my leg, pointing to the line repeatedly and motioning to one side. “Yes, I get it mate, believe me I get it.” He looked me sternly in the eye to ensure I’d learned my lesson and then made off for the platform. I was absolutely livid. Bursting with rage I vowed to not let the ‘gent’ away so easily so followed him to the platform, waiting for him to make a mistake. I bought a newspaper and bided my time. Our train approached. Now on the platform lie a series of lines and arrows dictating where passengers should alight from the train and where platform-bound tube users should await to get on. As you can imagine people don’t really adhere to them. In fact they flout them so aggressively it’s like the lines have caused a mortal offence and the locals want to prove a point. No matter, I knew this was my moment. The ‘gent’ approached the edge of the platform, my eyes following his feet like a hawk. Sure enough his right foot shuffled over the line, into the zone for arriving passengers. This was my time. I swooped, tapping his leg fervently and motioning to the zone he was meant to be inhabiting. He jerked leftwards immediately. I rose triumphantly and looked him sternly in the eye to make sure he’d learned his lesson. He was bamboozled. Folding my newspaper under my arm I took my seat on the train and bathed in my glorious victory. The angels sang, ticker tape reigned down, and I went to work. I need to get a life.


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