‘I’m reminded of an old rugby saying of mine: never be afraid to let the opposition see your abs’
Ross O’Carroll-Kelly: One by one, I open the buttons of my shirt. Then, I stort unloading the dishwashing, making sure to let him see The Six
“I’m not guilt-tripping you,” I tell Sorcha. “I’m just pointing out that this is the latest you’ve been home since you storted in LinkedIn.”
It’s not like I’m an obsessive or anything but the times that Sorcha has arrived home from work the past few nights have been 8.05pm, 8.16pm, 9.10pm, 9.17pm, 8.20pm, 8.12pm and – the latest – 9.30pm, which I type into my phone the second I hear her Nissan Leaf in the driveway.
A minute or two later, she sticks her head around the kitchen door and goes, “Hi, Ross!” and I somehow resist the temptation to go, “Er, what time do you call this?”
Instead, I’m just like, “Ah, you’re home!” and – yeah, no – I make a big point of looking at my wrist, even though I don’t actually wear a watch?
“Are the kids in bed?” she goes, stepping into the kitchen. She’s wearing her good Alexander McQueen suit and heels.
I’m like, “Yeah, no, I put the boys down about half-seven. I just had a listen at their door and the effing and blinding has finally stopped. Honor’s in her room, watching Love Island and trolling celebrities on Twitter.”
“This is, like, a random thing to say,” she goes, “but I actually miss them.”
I’m there, “It’s not random at all. They’ve been in bed every night when you’ve come home this week.”
“Okay, don’t stort guilt-tripping me for having a career.”
“I’m not guilt-tripping you, Sorcha. I’m just pointing out that this is the latest you’ve been home since you storted in LinkedIn.”
“Your point being?”
“My point being that you’re only paid to work until, like, half-five.”
She pours herself a glass of wine, knocks it back in one, then pours herself another. She goes, “That’s not how the world works any more? We’re not a bunch of clock watchers. Oh my God, if you were to stand outside Google or Facebook or any of those right now, you’d see people still sitting at their desks. Or in the gym, building up their adrenaline for another two or three hours of work before they go home.”
I’m like, “Pack. Of. Mugs.”
Whoa, back up the hord drive there! Who the fock is Steve?
“Well, I’m actually enjoying working hord? As a matter of fact, I’m going to be working remotely tonight.”
“Remotely – as in, on your own time and for no extra money?”
“If you must know, I have to go on a Skype call with Steve.”
Listen to Ross
“Whoa, back up the hord drive there! Who the fock is Steve?”
I can actually hear the jealousy in my own voice?
She goes, “He’s a goy on my team, Ross.”
I’m there, “He sounds like a total knob.”
“I think you’d actually like him. He plays rugby.”
“Okay, are you talking about tag rugby?”
“Yeah – he’s actually trying to get me to play.”
“Tag rugby isn’t rugby, Sorcha. I don’t know why we have to keep having this conversation.”
She takes her laptop out of her bag and sits down at the free-standing island. “Anyway,” she goes, “you’re going to have to excuse me.”
I’m like, “You’re going to talk to him here – as in, here in the kitchen?”
She goes, “Would you prefer to leave the kitchen?”
“No, I’ve got things to do here. Including defrosting the children’s lunches for tomorrow. Why does it have to be a Skype call, can I just ask? Could you not just talk to him on the old Wolfe Tone?”
Anyway, she calls this dude on her laptop and the next thing I hear is his voice.
She laughs as she opens her laptop. She’s there, “Yeah, it’s not 1998 anymore, Ross. Maybe you should leave – if you’re going to be jealous?”
“I’m not jealous. I’m just trying to run a home here. You work away there.”
Anyway, she calls this dude on her laptop and the next thing I hear is his voice. He’s like, “Hey, Sorcha,” except it turns out that he’s actually American and he pronounces it “Sore Chah”, which is usually something that drives her round the bend.
She doesn’t pull him up on it, though. She just goes, “Did you get my notes from the meeting? I genuinely think we can improve our Integrated Application Management Software”, and I’m trying to figure out if there’s a note of flirting in her voice when she says it.
“Yeah,” he goes, “thanks for putting it in bullet-point form for me. It was very helpful”, and I decide that, okay, no one comes on to my wife like that, not without me seeing whether they’re good-looking or not.
Hey, who’s that guy?” he has the actual balls to go
So I grab a brush and I stort sweeping the floor, just to give me an excuse to walk behind her and see can I get an eyeful of this dude.
It turns out he’s a looker alright – there’s no doubt about that. He’s got a big, fat, rugby head on him, which we all know is definitely Sorcha’s type.
“Hey, who’s that guy?” he has the actual balls to go.
Sorcha’s like, “Oh, that’s just my husband.”
And he’s there, “Oh, really?” but in a bored way, like she just told him that – I don’t know – the dishwasher needed emptying.
Actually, the dishwasher does need emptying? And it’s right behind Sorcha. Which gives me an idea. Yeah, no, this is going to sound possibly immature, but I’m suddenly reminded of an old saying of mine from the rugby days – never be afraid to let the opposition see your abs.
So I make a big point of going, “God, it’s warm in this kitchen tonight, isn’t it?” then in full view of him, one by one, I open the buttons of my shirt. Then, I stort unloading the dishwashing, making sure to turn around every few seconds to let him see The Six.
It’s not long before he goes, “I’m sorry, Sore Chah, I’m finding that a bit distracting.”
Sorcha’s like, “What are you taking about, Steve?”
He’s there, “I’m not enjoying that guy being in the background.”
I laugh. I’m there, “Yeah, in more ways than one, I’d say.”
Sorcha turns around, sees me standing there, flexing my stomach muscles and goes, “Ross, get out of this kitchen. We’ve got important work to discuss.”
Hey, I can take a hint. I button up my shirt and I tip upstairs to watch the end of Love Island with Honor. But not before swinging past the telephone table in the hallway. And switching off the wifi.