‘I’m not cutting my old dear’s – I don’t know – girdle off. I’d be sick’
THE OLD DEAR opens the front door to me with a big fake smile on her face. Before she gets the chance to tell me how wonderful it is to see me, I stare at her top lip and go, “Fock! Is it Movember already?” and then I follow that up with, “The old Ronnie’s coming on a treat, isn’t it? I’ll definitely have to sponsor you this year,” just in case the insult went over her head – which can sometimes happen.
She just, like, rolls her eyes and shakes her head and goes, “I was going to tell you how wonderful it was to see you. Come in if you must. Although I have to warn you, Ross, I don’t want you spoiling what’s been a very happy day for me with your unpleasantness.”
“Don’t worry,” I go. “I’m just here to tell you that the old cor insurance is due.” Her mouth drops open. She’d put you in mind of the creature at the end of Prometheus. “I can’t believe I’m still paying your car insurance,” she tries to go, “at, what, 32 years of age,” and then she trots down to the kitchen to grab her chequebook.
I might have mentioned to you before that she bought Oisinn’s old gaff on Shrewsbury Road. I have a quick poke around the place while she’s gone. You’d hordly know it was the same place. The old pool room, for instance, is now her study – and that’s where I find the manuscript for her new so-called book on her desk.
She’s suddenly standing behind me. “In case you were wondering, Ross, that sheaf of paper in your hands is the reason it’s been such a happy day for me.” I’m there, “Er, I wasn’t wondering?” “Yes,” she goes, totally ignoring the point I’ve just made, “I’ve finally finished my new erotic novel.” I check out the title and I actually laugh? “Fifty Greys in Shades? Is this for real?” “Yes,” she goes, on the big-time defensive, “it’s for real. And if you must know, there is currently a bidding war raging for the worldwide publication rights.”
“Fifty Greys in Shades? I mean, what the fock’s it even about?” “It’s about an active retirement group from Foxrock and Cornelscourt who go on a two-week trip to the Algarve.”