Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Joey

At the weekend I was eating with friends and there a discussion about what T.V. programmes they would like to see me on. There was a lot of laughter about putting me on "The Undateables" which turns out to be a dating program for people with mental and social disabilities.

It was nowhere near as clever, funny, insulting or meticulous as an insult that my oldest friend paid me over the course of a decade.

When we were young, to walk from his house to the fields you would pass a garage, a post-box, a hairdresser, a wool shop, a pet shop and the school for children with special needs. My friend moved away but I kept in close contact with him. I ended up going out with his girlfriend's best friend and she eventually moved to Plymouth to live with me. My girlfriend and I were walking in the area that I grew up. We walked past the garage (which no longer sells smurfs), the post-box, the hairdresser, the chemist (which used to be a wool shop) and the sandwich shop (which used to be a pet-shop). When we got to the building site that used to be the special school she asked, in all seriousness, how come I used to go to that school when M----- went to the one up the road.

A decade earlier my friend had told his girlfriend that that's where I went to school (which I hadn't) and deliberately omitted that it was for the special needs children (which I wasn't), hoping that she would ask me about it. In fact she mentioned it to her best friend and ten years later her friend unwittingly made a joke at my expense with seemingly perfect local knowledge of a town she'd just moved to.

Richard "Downham" B

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