Like!

I am hating the passenger opposite me. I started to hate her even before I sat down.

She built her nest on one of those two seats facing forward/two seats facing backward/table in the middle arrangements.

How can one girl in her late 20s occupy all four seats and the entire surface of the table?

So I indicated I was going to sit opposite her and asked her to move her stuff. She did, but she tried to kill me with a look.

You failed love.

Then I set out my laptop on the table.

She tutted and started to move her stuff from underneath my laptop – which I graciously lifted to allow her to (begrudgingly) make some space. And then she tried to kill me with a look again.

You’re still in the failing category love.

Then she like made like a phone call like.

Imagine a really plummy – but affected – accent:

Oh hello Briony (I hated her for that too) it’s Jasmine here. [drones on in plummy voice for some minutes and then…]

Well I don’t like know where to get orf like. I imagine it’s like the High Street? No, I’ve never been to Oxford before. Yah. Could you send me like a text? With directions?

By this time my loathing is accelerating upwards through the gears quicker than a Lotus.

OK like. I’ll see you around eight. Yah, bye.

When she cleared the table she left on it what I can only describe as a large covered dinner plate (LCDP) – the covering is some kind of raffia affair tied with the Bluebird insignia that, to me, signifies… Toffee!

I’m telling you this because the LCDP is sliding around on the table as the coach navigates the highways and byways of London village.

There are many twists and turns on the highways and byways of London village.

If the LCDP slides in to my laptop just once – just ONCE – more I’m going to stand, pick the thing up, walk the length of the coach, dump it in the bog and flush it.

She keeps steadying it and then, because she has the attention span of a goldfish, removing her steadying hand.

And then it slides again.

Steadying hand.

Steadying hand removed.

Slide. Bang in to laptop.

Steadying hand.

Steadying hand removed.

Slide. Bang in to laptop.

FFS!!!!

And she’s chewing her nails.

Actually… no, that’s not accurate.

She’s dining on her nails. I think she’s on her third course by now.

Hey – nailbiters – do you know how singularly unattractive you look when you’re massaging the inside of your mouth with your fingers?

I hate her.

Have I said this already?

No, really. I loathe her.

Self-centred doesn’t even come close to describing this stuck-up little bitch. She’s so far up herself she could lick her tonsils from her arse.

Flick!

Oh-oh.

We’ve developed a new mannerism.

Flick!

The hair toss.

Slurp!

There go the fingers. Straight after the hair toss, the fingers head right for the mouth again.

Ooooh, she’s so scrummy!

And the thing is – because I’m a guy I’ve got a detector and I can tell these things – she absolutely LOVES herself.

I’m going to get my phone out and video her and put it up on YouTube so we can all have a laugh and a groan at her expense.

Damn.

It’s a bit too dark in here.

Bugger.

Flick!

Slurp.

Steadying hand.

Remove steadying hand.

Slide. Bang in to laptop.

Steadying hand.

Flick.

Slurp.

Slide. Bang in to laptop.

OMFG!

She’s removed the LCDP!

It’s now on her lap.

Flick.

Slurp.

Hand on the table.

Hand on the window-ledge.

Flick.

Slurp.

Do you know how many germs you’ve transferred in to your mouth?

Twenty-six billion zillion quadrillion.

Die bitch, die!

Have I mentioned that I hate people today?

Tit!

So the girl over there? She’s feeding her offspring.

I’m on the coach, a couple of minutes ago teen mummy got on with her two sprogs (one is about 18 months the other is maybe three months) and plonked them down.

I recall that when she got on she bought just one ticket. So the two offspring travel for free? What a con.

When I’m the Supreme Ruler of the Universe I’ll reverse that little earner. Those little gits will have to pay 10 times the adult fare, not travel free! We can’t have toxic little yobs (I don’t care how young they are!) screaming and yelling and puking and having tantrums in the company of peace and quiet-loving adults. Like me.

Anyway, teen mummy sorted out her sprogs and got out enough stuff to indicate she might have just bought out Mothercare. The whole chain not just one store.

And then she hoiked up her jumper, hoisted out one of her milk-engorged mamaries and slapped the leaking tit in the mouth of the younger of her two little brats.

Now look, there’s something wrong with this picture and I’m trying to work out what it might be. Can you help?

But while you’re pondering, let me give you another thing to consider.

If I whipped out my digicam and started snapping off photos of her breastfeeding the newer output of her too-active reproductive organs, am I doing something wrong?

Am I?

Because the next question is:

If I’m doing something wrong in taking a photo of her exposing her breast in a public place, why the hell is she exposing herself in a public place?

What’s the crime? Taking a photograph in a public place?

Because if your answer to the question is ‘yes, in taking a photograph of that woman exposing her breast in a public place is wrong’, then where’s the crime of ‘taking a photograph in a public place’ on the statute books?

I’ve got news for you, that crime doesn’t exist; it isn’t a crime.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not offended by teen mummy getting her tits out in public; I have no sense of indecency and therefore have no values of decency to get bent up about.

I was just wondering if teen mummy knows the situation she’s putting herself – and her younger offspring – in?

And is she perhaps aware that photos of her tits could be all over alt.binaries.pictures.erotica.breasts.sucking (or on facebook or on youtube) in the time it takes me to press the ‘send’ button?

Inconsiderate

Here’s an interesting observation from last night’s 16:15 from Paddington.

People on trains are thoughtless c*nts.

As the train pulled in to Reading the guy who was sitting on the opposite side of the carriageway one row down got to his feet and slung his rucksack over his shoulder with way too much force.

The resulting thwack was so loud I could even hear it through my Muse-swamped iPod earbuds.

The girl who got smapped on the back of the head by it looked dazed and had to straighten her glasses.

He didn’t even apologise, but it doesn’t end there.

People got on the train – at Reading – and walked down the aisle attempting to find a vacant seat.

Do you know how narrow the aisles are on the latest generation of British train carriages?

And do you know that people – of either the getting on or getting off variety (but not getting off in a rude way) – walk up and down these aisles while the train is in motion?

With things slung over their shoulders?

You know, rucksacks, handbags, gladrags, small children, crocodiles etc.

And what they do, these people bearing these diverse things, is they commit a form of assault on the seated passengers.

Twenty five times.

Because twenty five times is the number of occasions I’ve seen people sitting further down the carriageway from me get battered by thoughtless, couldn’t care less c*nts.

When did we get like this?

I was going to ask ‘When did we become a nation of thoroughly unlikeable train passengers?’, but the use of the word ‘nation’ implies that it is a purely British problem.

But tonight I’m on the coach; the two oriental girls sitting at the four-person table opposite me have taken the area over, spread themselves out across the table and the two chairs facing them.

Then they got a bag out, set up a significant range of food (Sushi), got out a couple of pairs of chopsticks and tucked in.

Whilst talking.

Non-stop.

So no, it’s not a British phenomenon.

But the question is when did we stop caring about how we impact on the lives and environments of those around us?

Directing

She leant right in to my face – RIGHT IN TO MY FACE – and mouthed a question and gestured at me. I removed my earbuds.

Begrudgingly, I did.

‘Excuse me’, said Irritating Valley Girl #1, ‘Can you tell me where to get off for the train station in London?’

Now some folk might say that my response ‘There are about 26 main line train stations in London, which one do you want?’ wasn’t entirely helpful but I’d reached my limit of their brainless chatter within 28.7 seconds and had already resorted to the iPod’s earbuds as a place of refuge.

Predictably, Valley Girl #1 turned to Valley Girl #2 with open-mouthed amazement that London might have more than one train station. There then followed a discussion between them while they tried to recall the name of the station they needed. And they failed in their combined attempt to remember.

I was about to plug my ears again when Valley Girl #2 said to me, ‘We’re trying to get to Paris’.

I may have had a thought along the lines of ‘With the amount of planning you’ve shown so far – good luck!’ but instead I did a quick whirl through the cobwebs in my head and responded, ‘Paris… that’s St Pancras?’

‘Yeah, that’s the one!’ said Valley Girl #2

I thought about it for a moment then factored in the swell of the rush hour on the public transport system they’d be lugging those three cases through and offered them, ‘I guess your best plan would be to get off at Marble Arch and get the underground to St Pancras.’ And jammed my earbuds back in. And increased the volume of The Killers from Loud to OMG!

To no effect; there was more leaning in to my face, more gesturing and a massively exaggerated mouthing of a question as I were stupid. I pulled the plugs and said ‘Pardon?’

‘Does the driver announce where we get off?’

‘Yep,’ I retorted and The Killers instantly sealed me back in to my lovely Valley Girl-less world.

For the record, I have nothing against pretty, blonde 20-something Californian girls. But when any two people spread themselves out and occupy four seats and a table, my hackles begin to rise and my defences go to DefCon 3.

But when they talk in loud voices that instantly make it obvious to anyone with two braincells to rub together that the people in question are, in actual fact, terminally stupid and have neither an idea of where they’re going, nor which routes they’re going to take to get there… well, that’s about when I stop caring.

itz snot ri, ri?

The cute blonde girl opposite me sat down, fished out her mobile and called her friend Shaz. It was a conversation almost devoid of any kind of glottal stop. Also missing were most forms of punctuation, verb, adverb and, I think, all pronouns.

The call was conducted in the accent that is being labelled as ‘Estuary English’.

After she and Shaz had exchanged sufficient anecdotes about how ‘wikd’ they were yesterday, they evidently went on to detail how much ‘snoggin’, ‘feelin-up’ and – inevitably – ‘fukin’ they had both got up to last night.

But soon even Blondie had reached her conversational limit (sadly, though, not reached as quickly as my hearing limit had been), she hung up.

Only to dial another number. I shuddered with uneager anticipation but when the call was answered she said…

‘Oh hello Daddy. Is Mummy there please? Hello Mummy. I’m on my way home. I stayed in London last night so I could buy you both a present, but I’m feeling really unwell so I’m on my way home.’

And it was delivered in a flawless received pronunciation with elocution-perfect enunciation.

I nearly fell off me arse, I did.

Anyway, blondie has a cold, apparently.

I wonder if the fact that her smock-top is so low-cut that I can see her bra has anything to do with her contracting the cold? I mean I can see the little black bow on her pink and black bra – the little black bow that sits on the underwired bit that is right at the base of both cups, if you know what I mean?

That’s not too low-cut for a day when the outside temperature is struggling to reach 6c, is it?

She’s got a scarf too, bless her.

And a pair of brown Fugly boots and black leggings. And of course the aforementioned (grey) smock-top. And a navy cardigan which actually doesn’t have any buttons, so she can’t do it up. That’s useful, isn’t it? Mmmm.

Blondie is about 17. I wonder what her Mummy and Daddy would think about her almost bi-polar existence?

B.

This is completely effing ridiculous

[checks watch]

Now hear this. It’s 22.35, right?

And I’m on the A40 in Park Royal, (slightly north-) west London, right?

And I’m not going anywhere, right?

I’m not going anywhere because, unbelievably, outside it is… gridlock!

Yep, at 22.37 (now) the three outward-bound carriageways of the A40, one of London’s primary arterial routes, are all locked more solid than a conditionally-constipated person’s lower intestine could be if they’d been bingeing on ‘all you can eat constipation pills’ for three weeks.

What gives here?

When did the our capital’s (ha!) roads get to the pathetic state that one single incident has the staggering capacity to cripple the network?

I’m sitting here fuming.

And I’m also wondering if a wiser economy would have taken the £-trillion rescue package that went to the non-manufacturing banks and spent it on a transport network instead.

You know, just an idle thought in passing. Except I’m not passing anything, obv – in a constipated transport kind of way.

B.

Something rotten in the state of Oxford (Tube)

I got on this morning’s Oxford Tube coach and took one of the two empty forward-facing seats on the downstairs, near-side of the bus. The young woman sitting opposite had a carpet-bag sized handbag on the table, various make-up items spread all over the table.

And she was painting her nails with some kind of toxic waste.

It stank.

I’m familiar with the normal smell of acetates (if I can use the words ‘normal’ and ‘acetates’ in the same context) and the liquid gloop she was covering her finger and thumb-nails with was offensively awful.

The smell was so powerful that it could clearly be smelt upstairs (I later heard one of the off-going passengers remark how much stronger the smell was downstairs).

B.

Phones and people don’t go

Yesterday evening’s little rantette about LOUD girl with whiny nasal accent on the phone on the coach elicited a brilliant response from Masher – which I’m going to follow up on.

But this morning one of the passengers trumped even his idea!

We were about an hour out from Oxford when a woman walked past me and had a word in the driver, then wandered back upstairs to her seat.

Three or four minutes later the driver announced in to his microphone, ‘Could the woman who has been on the phone for the last 15 minutes please hang up. Everyone around you is fed up with listening to your conversation. Thank you.’

Fucking brilliant!

So not only top marks to the passenger for complaining but also top marks to the driver for waiting a few minutes so it wasn’t really obvious who the complainant was.

Except I know, of course.

Unfortunately I wasn’t sitting upstairs so missed out on what I feel is the telephonist’s undoubted outbreak of acute embarrassment.

Brilliant.

B.