I’m never bored when I’ve nothing to do.
I can always think of something.
No, I’m bored when I’m given something boring to do.
Such as work.
Reprographics is boring.
Really, really boring.
When someone asks me what I do for a job, I start yawning before I can even answer.
When I’m at work, I yearn for something interesting to happen.
Like a jet plane crashing into the building, or a disgruntled employee going postal with an assault rifle.
Screams, gunshots, shattering glass.
Anything to break the tedium.
I’m at work, looking at a direct mail job with eyes that refuse to focus.
It’s as though my body refuses to acknowledge the awesome crappiness of the job.
Cup of tea?
Just had one.
If I have another I’ll piss myself, and I can’t go to the toilet because it’s 10.30 and the bog wanker will be in there, yanking himself daft.
I want something to break the tedium.
The door flies open.
It’s Soulless Boss.
He hides in the store room.
I duck under the desk.
I wanted something to happen, but not this.
It’s really shitty under my desk.
The gritty linoleum is strewn with grey patch cables and power leads.
These act as dust traps, gathering lint and an alarming abundance of what looks like pubic hair.
Silverfish scuttle about their business.
Massive spiders lurk in the corners.
A millipede is nibbling desiccated orange peel.
How the fuck did it get under my desk?
It really needs a clean, but the cleaner won’t do it.
Not after I called him a fucking cunt.
My working environment gradually went downhill after that little conversation, I can tell you.
It smells of old cuppa-soups and despair.
I’m not coming out though.
I remain perfectly still.
I hear the door.
I hold my breath.
High heels click across the floor.
I wish that they would just fuck off.
Eyes squeezed shut.
“Shit the bed! Owwww!”
I open my eyes.
Fat feet spilling out of tight shoes. Fat ankles. Fat legs.
I look up.
“Aw. Did you bang your head, Lucifer?”
“Yes, Dimples. I banged my head.”
“Aw. Are you crying?”
No. My eyes are watering, but I’m not crying.”
“Why are your eyes watering?”
“Because I banged my fucking head!”
“Huh. What do you want.”
I know what she wants.
She wants money.
Dimples always carries a bulging manila envelope and a paper bag with a card in it.
She’s always collecting for someone.
I fucking hate putting money into collections.
Births, birthdays, weddings, leaving-do’s, retirements.
Dimples waddles from department to department, filling her envelope with the cash of her begrudging victims with an irritating, mindless giggle and a brainwashed, buck-toothed smile.
If ever there was an argument for releasing Peter Sutcliffe early, it’s Dimples.
She thrusts the envelope under my nose.
“Collection for Daisy!”
“Daisy? Why should I give money for her?”
“She’s having a baby!”
“What? Another? She must have about five kids already! She’s only just back off maternity leave, isn’t she?”
“Yes, but she’s pregnant again!”
“Jesus. She wants to get her tubes tied, she does.”
“Nothing wrong with big families, Lucifer! She loves kids!”
“She loves cock, more like. Anyway, what about all the crap we bought for the other kids? She’ll have more gear than Mothercare by now!”
It makes her look like a squirrel with a thyroid problem.
“It’s an expensive affair raising a family, Lucifer. You should know.”
“I do know. And it’s even more expensive when I’m supporting Daisy the cow and her bloody herd as well. All she wants is to park her barge arse on the couch in front of Jeremy Kyle all day while the kids run riot. Work’s an inconvenience to her. No, I’m not paying this time, Dimples. She’s had her lot from me.”
She looks shocked.
“You’re a nasty man, Lucifer! Having a lickle baby is a wonderful thing, but you make it sound so… so…”
“Cynical? Yes. I’ve got a tenner in my wallet and it’s got to last me the week. I’m not blowing it on some lazy cow who’s legs are permanently bowed from all the men going in and the babies coming out. If that’s everything, Dimples, I’ll get back to work.”
She tries to give me a hard stare.
She looks like a Care Bear pushing out a fart.
“No, I’m a realist. You office staff are always collecting for this or that! You don’t get us shop floor lads sniffing around the offices because one of us has got his wife up the stick! You get paid more than us as well!”
The door bangs shut.
Dimples has gone.
I dust the pubes and insects from my jeans and sit down.
Soulless Boss slithers out of the store room, checks the coast is clear, and heads out of the door.
Thirty seconds later he shoots back in.
He’s back in the store room.
I look under the desk.
Don’t fancy getting under there again.
I decide to brazen it out.
The door opens.
In walks Buster.
He’s a printer, covered in crap and ink.
He’s carrying an inky manila envelope and a bag with a grubby card in it.
“Doing a collection, Lucifer. You wanna put in?”
“Depends, Buster. Who’s it for? We don’t normally collect on the shop floor.”
“It’s for Superdad.”
“Shit, what’s he done now? He can’t be expecting another kid, because his wife has fucked off, hasn’t she?”
“Yeah, took off with the nipper last year. That’s when he got into all that ‘Father’s for Justice’ shit. Dressing like Superman. Drinking on his own.”
“Hmm. So why are you collecting for him?”
“What? Dead? Fucking hell! When did he die?”
“Last weekend, they reckon.”
“How did he die?”
“Well, it was his little lad’s birthday, so he organises this party for him in the garden, with a big bouncy castle and everything. The blokes had a hell of a job getting it into his back garden, by all accounts. It was wedged in tight when it was fully inflated.
“Well he waits for his lad to turn up but he doesn’t show. He rings his ex-wife, but she tells him it’s not his weekend to have custody. What with all the drinking, Superdad has got his dates mixed up. He takes the news pretty bad. Puts on his Superman costume and gets shit faced. When he’s good and drunk he goes out into the garden and starts jumping on the bouncy castle. The neighbours can see him bouncing about all over the place, cape flapping about, making a right racket. They threatened to call the police, but he just told them to fuck off.
“After a bit he gets knackered from all the bouncing and he falls asleep. Everyone’s glad of the peace and quiet. What they didn’t know is that the bouncy castle had sprung a leak against a nail in his fence and it deflated while Superdad was asleep inside it. He suffocated to death.”
I shake my head.
“That is a really shitty way to go. Suffocated in a bouncy castle wearing a superman outfit.”
“Yeah. It’s not high on my list of ways to die either. Thing is, it was really warm that week. The blokes came to take it away and as no-one answered the door they just rolled up the deflated castle and carried it off with him inside. Didn’t know he was there.”
“Yeah. Stuck it in a hot storage unit all week, and didn’t get it out again till the weekend after. By then he’d turned to soup.”
“That’s pretty grim. Poor Superdad. Are you collecting for his funeral then? Flowers and stuff?”
“Not really. We want to buy the bouncy castle and have it burnt. The mercenary fuckers who own it want to just hose it off, patch it up and rent it out again. Didn’t seem right, really.”
“God no. You’d never get the smell out of it. And to think of kids bouncing about all over where Superdad died…”
We both shudder.
I take out my wallet, pull out the tenner.
“Here you go, Buster.”
“Ta Lucifer. I don’t like to tap the lads for cash, but it’s a good cause.”
“I don’t mind this once. It’s not like he’s going to be doing it again, is it? Tell you what. Why don’t you go collecting round the offices. They’re always keen on giving to a good cause. Start with Dimples. Tell her I sent you.”
“I’ll do that. Cheers Lucifer.”
“No problem, Buster.”
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