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Talk's Cheap

Talk's Cheap

A conversation between two people, one deaf the other mute.

Hello all. I'm trying something out here. It's an 'internal musing.' I think it's called? Most of my stories so far here have been about nostalgic-look-backs, so I thought who better to ref nostalgia, than an old person? So I wrote a first draft and sent it in pm to a good friend, who's a critic, who ran over it with a wagon, reversed back over it, then ran it over again just to make sure! I must admit on reflection, it was really dire!

Let me explain. See I thought cos it was internal thoughts, it would be a good idea to have each separate thought connected by an ellipse. It wasn't.

So I went back to it, deleted a lot of it and the result is what you're hopefully about to read. Some of it's in the vernacular of my region so you may find words look 'not right.' But take it from me, they are.

Thanks for your time. Bri.

Talk's Cheap

Here I am, . . . again. Sitting on my bench. 'MY Bench?' When did it become 'MY Bench?' Waiting for the . . . ? Waiting for the . . . ?  Oh Bliddy-Bugger! What's the number of that bliddy bus again? Should really write the important things down you know, seeing as how I forget thi- . . . Number Three! That's it. The number three, ah hah hah, still got me marbles after all. Should've worn a hat. I defnitly shoulda worn a hat. That sun's only gonna get hotter. Lovely day mind, bit hot come to think on it, should've left my jacket off as well. Bet I get hot later, such a chore though, going through the motions trying to get a jacket off . . . especially now, now I'm- . . .mustn't think like that now Ethel. 'Look for the positivity. Accept-Adapt-Move-On' A-A-M-O. Not even a real word that. But that's what they say down there at that place. Easy when you've got full use of your arms and legs, and everything in between, isn'it. Talk's cheap?

Oh no. He's early. That bliddy bloke. Spends his day rabbiting away, to me and, come to think of it, I've never seen him get on a bliddy bus. I bet he has other people he bugs here? They must come in shifts. Me in the morning, another in the afternoon and one for the night. He doesn't half rabbit on. I don't want to 'chat.' Bloody idjit. 

Men! They never see what's on the ends of their noses.

“ Mornin'” 

All these weeks, he says the same thing, don't think he's even noticed I've never answered him, not once. Oh I would if I could. Oh yeah, I'd answer him all right . . . I'd answer him like he's never been answered before! Hee hee. 

Eee I shouldn't really though, what would Ma think? Never mind what she'd think. What would she say? I know what she'd say. “Ethel! If I ever catch you I'll-” but you didn't did you Ma? You never caught me, I made sure of that you old bugger.

Eee, I'm a bucket-mouth! Hee hee hee.

His bones always creak and pop as he sits. Quite loud at times as well, like dried-out-logs when they used to spit and snap on the old coal fires.

Don't get that with 'central-'eatin.' 

Mebbee he needs oilin? I know he suffers from something or other, he told me once, he did. But I can't remember everything he said. Now what was it again? Oh I don't know? Sooner or later, I know for a fact, he's gonna tell me again, just have to make sure I'm tuned in when he says it. Which isn't easy these days, my eye-lids get so heavy, like they've got weights attached to 'em. I nod off so easy nowadays too. Sometimes have to wake up in the middle of the night to take my sleeping-pills, or I won't sleep right-through. Now ain't that the stupidest thing you've ever heard of? Eee-hee-hee.

Oh yeah, you just sit your fat arse down and I'll pretend I don't hear you.  Heh heh, not that it makes much difference anyway. You'll prattle on and on, and look, there he goes, off to a good start he is. Telling me about his life and his take on things. His wife, his job, his hobbies. His son. Ah yes, . . . his Son.

Poor lad, got all-fired up with the thrill of the war, and the chance of glory. Week after shipping out they got 'The Telegram.' There were a lot of Telegrams back then. Got so the poor Postie felt hated by everyone. They'd scarper when he neared their bliddy streets. Tryin to avoid the inevitable ah' s'pose? Wasn't even his fault. Then the Postie hisself joined up and he died too. I wonder who delivered His Telegram? 

I wouldn't wish that on anyone, you know, no matter how annoying, even him. Feel sorry for his wife though . . . Oh yeah, there's a wife . . . Someone who's as well dressed as him for bus-riding, has to have a wife. A single bloke wouldn't be so . . . ?

So dapper. Listen to me, prattling away, same way he does. Hee hee hee. 

Eee I shouldn't, but sometimes I can't help it. Ma always said, my mouth would get me in trouble . . . Of course, I never listened, who does? . . . She showed me right enough though, didn't she? Course I never thought the trouble I'd get, would come from mam herself did I?

I learned a valuable lesson that day. Too-bloody right I did. Never ever, do anything, that your Ma or ya Da, but mainly your Ma gets to find out about. Cos if she does? Wallop! Me 'ead would be ringin for hours, ooh she had a heavy hand, she did. I used to get the 'short-sharp-shock treatment.'

Nowadays, even punishments have 'moved-on.' You can't hit kids now. Whoever heard of such things? It's all nonsense. Now, it's 'grounded.'

'Grounded?' another 'ism' imported from overseas. In my day, you got walloped, sent to bed with no tea or supper, certainly no Radio, and you got ignored for a few days. Proper punishments they were. Not wishy-washy, like today. 'Grounded?' Sounds like something you've done, doesn' it? Like grindin ya teeth, but different. 

Maybe something carried over from the war years? 'Ground-Dead?' 

Oh, I don't know. Stop thinking of things like this. They serve no purpose. 

Oops. Wait a minute. Yes . . . yes. Now he's telling me of his long-running dispute with his neighbour.
“So I said to him, that's our bit of drive that is. If you go over that with your mower, you're on private property you are. And I can have you arrested.” 

Why can't you see he's doing you a favour? He's saving you from cutting the grass at the side of your drive, you stupid man. Six inches of border and you wanna start a war. Bliddy idjit!

Some people can't see what's right in front of their own faces . . . They have to feel important to make up for their drab un-eventful little lives. Oops. Wait a minute, he's asking me something. Whats that? Lean in a bit, willya?

“I said, I was wondering who cuts your lawn? Do you have a man come in?” 

A man? Who does he think I am? Lady Chatterley? Lady Muck, more like. 

'A man.' Hee hee, chance would be a fine thing. Stoppit now, none of that Percy-Filth if you please. Not at my age anyway. I'm too long in the tooth for all that . . . But wait a minute here, he's got me thinking now?  Maybe a man wouldn't be such a bad idea? He'd certainly do the jobs I can't do myself anymore. Of course there was a time I wasn't 'allowed' in the garden or to pick up any kinds of tools. Tommy'd have a fit.
Oh Tommy, Tommy. Not a day doesn't go by where I don't still miss you. All those years of thrift. Putting money aside for 'our nest-egg,' and you go and get yourself knocked over by a Post-Office van. A Post Office Van! The sheer bloody irony of it. It's enough to make a girl weep. Alright, stop it now, no more sadness on such a beautiful day like today.

I wonder how much they charge these days to do the odd-jobs? No harm in finding out I suppose. I need a 'bob-a-jobber.' Aww, I remember the cute little lads dressed in their green uniforms. With their cute little caps and their . . . ? Oh what were them things they used to tie their scarves with? 'wiggle?' No 't'wasn't a wiggle. Ah I know. It was a Woggle! That's what it was.

But 'bob-a-jobbers' disappeared as soon as the Play-Station's came out didn' they? If not then, maybe before. All the kids didn' wanna play outside anymore, they played with their 'pewters and conscoles,' or something like that? No more working for money. No more feeling good because you'd earned the price of something. Now it's all give-give-give . . . and take-take-take. Oh to be a kid again. I'd be rich I would. I was back then. Oh yes. I earned every day and didn't have to ask anyone for anything. 

When you know the answer's going to be no, you soon learned not to ask.

Path-sweeping, garden-clearing, leaf-burning, snow-shovelling, car-washing. Christmas-Carolling even. All good ways to make pocket-money, and more if you wanted.

Kids today? Huh.

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