It began as a blog about completing a thesis, it became a blog about everything but completing a thesis, it ended with a complete thesis.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Small world

About four years ago, I introduced my two most poles-apart pals to one another. It was a case of:

"Cornish Ian(1) meet Ken(2)"

(1) wonderful chap, churchy, met him in 1993, chartered accountant, farming background
(2) wonderful chap, oaf, vegan, met him in 2000, multiply pierced (previously), tattooed, researcher**

** a surprising image of Ken?

I had wondered if Ian and Ken would take one look at each other, immediately clock ‘a freak’, and leave a big awkward silence. Gladly, they did not. They got on - like the proverbial house. Since then, their paths have crossed on two occasions - a football trip to Crewe, and a football trip to Brentford. Sophistication nil, glamour nil. But again, the boys got on well. And since then they’ve often asked of one another.

Earlier this evening, I took a call from Ian. After opening pleasantries he says:

Ian: Anyway, there's news - I’m getting married.
Shane: (Thinks ‘Oh god, must say the right thing’) Bloody hell! Congratulations! The fox-hunter, I presume?
Ian: (Pause) Yes. Her name’s Chloe.
Shane: Of course it is. That’s excellent news.
Ian: Ta.

Standard questions and answers re making proposals, informing families, brother being best man and so on...

Shane: Fantastic! And will there be-
Ian: There’ll have to be a stag-do.
Shane: (Thinks ‘Oh god no – please not a big night out in Falmouth) And?
Ian: Well, I reckon we should have a bash at the three peaks!
Shane: Oh, you star! I knew you’d come up with something good. Y’ know, we’ve got so much in common… in fact, it is I who you should be marrying, not Chloe. I say dump her and marry me!
Ian: (Awkwardly) Ah yes, very funny. Shane-
Shane: Yes?

And from a slightly distant, more echosome corner of the room:

Chloe: You can jolly well fack awwwff, he will not be marrying you - or anyone else!
Ian: We’re on the speakerphone old boy.
Shane: Ah. I was only kidding. (And louder) Anyway, I wouldn’t marry him - he’s shit in bed!
Chloe: He wasn't half an hour ago!
Shane: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrggghhhhhhhhhhhh! Too much information!!! (They laugh)
Ian: There was one other reason for calling actually.
Shane: Yes?
Ian: Y’ know your pal Ken?
Shane: Yes.
Ian: Where does he work?
Shane: He’s been working at New University since the summer. Why?
Ian: Does he still live up near Holloway?
Shane: Yes. Why?
Ian: (Away from phone) Told y’ – that’ll be a tenner. (To phone) I – we - think he’s been dating a friend of Chloe’s.
Shane: What’s her name?
Chloe: (Closer) Gabriela. She’s Italian.
Shane: He has! Small world what!
Ian: (Amused) Definitely. Though I hear he’s toned down his appearance.
Shane: Yeah, a bit. What have you heard about them?
Chloe: I’m not sure about Ken, but I can tell that she’s smitten. She told me that they went out on Saturday evening and that she ‘laughed louder than ever’.
Shane: That would have been the bit where he lowered his trousers. (Ian belly laughs)
Chloe: Don’t be cruel. You’ve got to help us move them on to the next level.
Shane: 'The next level'?
Chloe: You knowwwww-
Shane: Oh Jesus, I’ve just eaten!

And so it came to pass that the conspirators did hatch a plan, the subtlety of which was quite remarkable. Their daring would begin at around 4pm on Sunday 20 November, 2005. And it would begin here:

...and all around Kenneth and Gabriela's innocent, and not so private, viewing of this.

Hee hee hee hee hee hee heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.