Frivolous Monsters

Slave to the Machine

I had some unexpected visitations in the run up to Christmas; knocking like spectral clanking chains. But as they all appeared on the doorstep, and there were only two of them, then it appeared that my role in proceedings was something akin to a cut-price Scrooge for the austerity generation. Times are hard, for everyone, it seems.

vegetables

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Coffee Shop Decorations

It was in Costa Coffee that they once told me how as soon as Halloween is over, even before Guy Fawkes night occurs, Christmas begins. And so it was that I found them cracking out the festive takeaway cups again whilst, to accompany my drink through the large goldfish bowl windows, some wino with fancy trainers was quietly sleeping on a bench outside. The very spirit of Christmas, I thought… for the beginning of November.

Tramp Outside Costa Coffee

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The American Holidays

     I’ve been spoilt by my favourite bookshop Fopp, which sells two books for a fiver, and so when the Spectre Trilogy – the three James Bond novels which apparently tell the rise and fall of that criminal organisation1 – appeared in my local remainder bookshop for ten pounds I thought them a little “pricey”.

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Clodagh, Desmond, Eva, and the Case of the Missing Ear

It was like an episode of Thunderbirds in Bury when the most perilous disaster the town had ever seen was averted – a hundred lives saved – after the fire brigade sprang into action to face their greatest challenge during the brunt of an unnamed storm outside the local Wetherspoon’s pub which had taken up residence in the old cinema building.

Letter E 500

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Like A Spearhead from Space?

I only decided late on Saturday night to go into Manchester the following day when I purchased the last on-line ticket for an event which I had known about for months. Talk about last minute decisions, but what can I say? It’s the skin of the teeth, seat of the pants, way I seem to roll.

Manc1 Read more…

In Conversation with the Coffee Shop Stalker

I was in Costa Coffee when the large middle-aged woman who I’d already christened my coffee shop stalker came in and sat down next to me on the long sofa up against the back wall.

Costa Coffee barista Read more…

Toilet Tales 05

As a local writer of no celebrity and even less fortune I naturally dine at the finest tables and hang out at the trendiest scenes. And by that I, of course, mean the library reading room and the lowliest possible table in Costa Coffee outside the toilet door where no-one ever wants to sit. But by frequenting these locations it does put me in the sphere of influence of certain local characters.

Costa Coffee

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My Last Words

When the billionaire Charles Foster Kane breathed his last, in what’s often regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, his last utterance was the mysterious “Rosebud” whilst if I were to be suddenly called upon to produce my final words, to be recorded for posterity, then I reckon that I would plump for the equally enigmatic Red Top.TV aeriel 3 Read more…

Toilet Tales 04

When I was at Bangor University there was an edict passed down by the head of department that no visiting prospective student should be taken above the sixth floor, because they didn’t need to see what went on up there; for a clean-living physical chemist like himself he considered the organic research groups to be dirty, seeing as they actually did proper chemical experiments, and for him, safely ensconced in his first floor office, they were the departmental shame.Bangor View

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Toilet Tales 03

Friday, market day, and so in amongst the coach-loads of visiting pensioners to our World-famous market I was compelled, once again, to become the Costa Coffee toilet monitor.

Executive washroom membership card. Admit one.

Executive washroom membership card. Admit one.

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