Sunday, September 10, 2006

Umbrella Story

I remember when it was dead hot recently. Horrible sticky heat. Hot as in over twenty degrees. People piss me off. I'm a Winter person. I like wearing lots of clothes. If wearing too many layers of clothes was a hanging offence then I'd be dead now. I'd have been hung years ago. I'd have been dead for years.


People piss me off when they complain that it's too cold. I'm not talking about your pensioner who can't afford to put the heating on because of VAT. In general they don't anyway. They're up to their armpits in shawls and blankets, up to their heads in balaclavas. They haven't got time to be bitter about the bitter weather. They're using their complaint gland to complain about VAT on fuel. The people who complain about it being too cold can generally afford another jumper. They generally own gloves. They are generally the same people who complain when the weather's too hot. The weather isn't given a chance. It's totally fucked.

It can't win.

I like extremes of temperature. When you're cold you can always wear more clothes, if you're hot and naked you have problems.

Some of the time.

I don't mind when it's hot. I still get accused of wearing too many layers of clothes, luckily I can't be formally charged. When it's hot there are hosepipe bans. When it's hot for more than two days it becomes a heatwave. Look it up if you don't believe me.

Am I the only person who misses the centigrade scale?

Anyway, it had been dead hot recently and I was on the bus when it started. I don't mind the rain but when it's quite heavy you need an umbrella, or a hat. I was wearing a coat at the time, after all, it's never too hot for a coat, but the hood on it doesn't reach my head properly and if I have to put it up my neck disappears. I'm not a big fan of hats, so I got off the bus and went to buy an umbrella. The thing was I only had a fiver on me and decent ones cost about twice as much, or at least if anyone asked me how much a decent umbrella costs I'd tell them about a tenner. Not that anyone ever has, or probably ever will.

But it's just as well to be prepared.

I went straight into Woolworths looking like the Atlantic, found an umbrella that fell within my budget, paid for it, and left.

It was only when I got outside that I realised my mistake. It was a bloody girls one! I had paid five pounds for what was, in effect, a crap parasol. My walk to work only heightened my angst. There were umbrella sales going on everywhere. Decent ones. For less than a tenner. Even in Halfords. I might as well have held a five pound note over my head for all the use my new umbrella was. To be honest it was more of a psychological crutch. In fact it probably would have made a better crutch than an umbrella because the first gust of wind that came my way turned the umbrella inside out and ripped it apart. My umbrella left as a canvasless comedy corpse, lying in a bin. Spokes akimbo.

I saw a rainbow the other day and went looking for the crock of gold.

When I found them they were complaining about VAT on fuel.

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