This morning I spent £4504 on a train ticket and I thought you might enjoy knowing what I’ve got for that so far.
For that kind of money you might think I spent a pleasant journey reclining in a seat made from baby seals whilst being enthusiastically fellated by Monica Bellucci.
Well, you’d be wrong.
You might think that for that kind of money I was given a special private cabin where I was rocked gently off to sleep in a hammock made of tits.
Again, you’d be wrong……….
The train was late and when it finally arrived I had to brush an entire packet of “Quavers” from the only available seat. Why somebody decides to scatter cheese flavoured potato snacks over just one train seat is a mystery even Brian Cox would struggle to explain. I didn’t fancy standing the entire journey though, so I got to work. After ridding the seat of it’s crispy blanket, I sat down.
“Well done,” said Brain “a seat at last. We may have had to work for it and a quick glance under the table shows no signs of Monica Bellucci, but at least we have a seat! Well done!”
Which is when I detected the smell.
Something unpleasant and yet….. familiar. I glanced around the carriage accusingly and then suddenly realised that the smell was, in fact, my own hand. My own cheesy potato crumb covered hand. Now, nobody likes a cheesy hand smell, least of all me. Perhaps I don’t adhere to the highest standards of hygiene but I was unwilling to spend the whole day smelling like I’d just wanked-off a wotsit, so I got back up and went in search of somewhere to wash it.
“Good job Monica Bellucci wasn’t under the table eh Cheesy Fingers?” said Brain.
“Shut up Brain!” I replied.
I sighed as I passed a little old woman standing up by the doors – despite her age (and occasional theatrical sigh) she was being studiously ignored by her fellow commuters, some were hiding behind broadsheet origami, others were faking sleep. Nearby a table of 4 obese schoolgirls were oblivious to her discomfort; too busy reading Heat magazine and laughing at pictures of celebrities’ flabby arms and taxi-gussets – page after page of the spiteful genuflections of the paparazzi.
“People just don’t stand up these days” sighed Brain, “People should stand up for what is right!”
I arrived at the nearest toilet and went inside – it was unpleasant. I don’t know what people eat these days but it looked like someone had drowned an otter. By the looks of the floor it had put up quite a vicious fight.
To distract myself from the unflushable crime scene, I looked at myself in the graffiti covered mirror as I washed my cheesy hand. Across the glass, some talented toilet scribe had written “Fuck you looking @?” in marker pen and this eternal question hovered across my forehead.
“Train poos! Cheesy seats! Children who don’t stand up for pensioners! – what is wrong with this world?” asked Brain.
And there, queried by a piece of existential graffito, it came to me.
“You know what Brain,” I said “there is something we can do – a gesture to humanity on a cold Monday morning. Let’s offer our seat to the old lady, let’s show her and everyone else in this moving shitbox that all is not lost, that the world she fought for retains the precepts of chivalry and good manners, that despite the dwindling embers of virtue, integrity and social etiquette there remain a few among us who would fan those glowing coals into an inferno of politeness!”
I glanced down and did that thing when you throw up in your own mouth a bit.
“An inferno of politeness? Seriously James I think the otter fumes are getting to you, can we leave before you throw up on Tarka here?”
“Okay Brain, but we’re giving the old woman our seat – we will stand up for what is right!”
We never get the chance to offer the old lady the seat, by the time I get back the old bitch had already taken it and was pretending to be asleep.
“Where’s your inferno of politeness now cheesy fingers?”
“Shut Up Brain!”
“Oh we’ll stand up all right!”
“SHUT UP BRAIN!”