Just last Wednesday

Just last Wednesday I was sitting on the bus minding my own business when I got distracted by the conversation going on behind me. There was a man in his early thirties dribbling on to the young girl who was in the unfortunate position of sitting next to him,and being jammed up against the window by his bulk. She looked totally disinterested in his conversation and I think I heard her whisper ‘Beam me up Scotty’ at one point.

The man, I think his name was Frederick Feodor Fuckwit III, was talking about his new house and how good it was going to. It would, apparently, have 55 bedrooms, 45 bathrooms, 11 home theatres, lounges, kitchens, dining rooms, rumpus rooms, double garages. It was going to be really big. In fact his was likely to be bigger than anybody else’s! He was also going to fill it with furniture, including his brand new 72 inch penis…oh sorry, I meant to say plasma TV, so that he could watch sport and crappy TV programmes while anyone unfortunate enough to be attached to him could serve his every need and watch him get fatter.

But this was not all. Freddie Fuckwit was going to build his brand new house in Princeton, a new development that was both trendy and full of wealth. Now, I drive past Princeton on a regular basis at the weekend and while the name might conjure up images of an Ivy League university set within gorgeous manicured grounds, this sort of thing is distinctly lacking from the area. What Princeton is, is an old swamp that has been filled in and replaced with soulless housing and a rather crass artificial lake. The suburb is built on ground that is high in sulphur and that has a propensity to leach acidic water if left exposed to the air. A better name for this suburb would be Old Swamp, or perhaps Acid Bath. While the developers obviously wanted to pander to people’s insecurities and snobbery, I can’t help thinking that calling the area Princeton was a bit much.

Of course, this developer is not on their own. Near Busselton there is a suburb, rather optimistically, called Provence. Again, I have driven past this suburb, and indeed through it on occasion, and what I can’t seem to find are any rustic French villages, rugged mountains, or old men in berets sitting drinking coffee in pleasant cafes. There is a distinct lack of the Mistral blowing down the Rhone Valley, in fact a distinct lack of anything of any culture or texture. What there is is a flat sandpit that used to be covered with native vegetation, some of which now resides in sick looking enclaves. I also know of Westminster. You might expect to see Big Ben here, but no…anyway I think you get the picture.

Are we really so shallow as to be sucked in by such names…apparently so. But back to Freddie Fuckwit – we were now nearing the city and Freddie realised that the young lady was now drooling and banging her head against a window. This would have been a hint to most people that they were boring somebody, but not Freddie, no – he redoubled his efforts. At this point the girl jumped over him, ran to the driver, and got let off at the next stop. I last saw her sitting with the smile of the ecstatic on her face now that she had finally been released from her torment.

Freddie turned to me and said, ‘I say. Was it something I said?’

And that Your Honour, is why I yelled, ‘Don’t you dare start on me you pompous twat,’ and punched his lights out. It was the least he deserved.

The Living Dead

Have you seen a member of the Living Dead on your daily commute? I’m sure you have, you know. You can recognise them as the people who sit and stare into a void – I think they sometimes drool a bit too. They seem oblivious to everything going on around them, traspped in a world of monotous routine and have given up any attempts to escape. These people walk on automatic as they find their way to the station or bus stop, and they walk the same line every day. Put an obstacle in their path that they stop and get quite confused at the change and wander about in a zombie-like daze as they try to resolve the situation. Anyhow…they are the inspiration for this poem.

Geoff Munro

Geoff Munro expired on the Number 60 bus
sometime between 1997 and 2005,
nobody noticed he’d died.

Serving the sentence of the terminally dulled,
inoculated against colour, against life, against fun,
time dimmed the light in his eyes.

Allocated standard issue fatigue
for a job that he came to despise;
no innovation, no compromise.

Permanently gasping for untainted air,
relentlessly throttled by process,
watching the clock until home-time arrives.

Geoff Munro still rides that bus,
same time, same seat, same people,
unaware he’s no longer alive.

%d bloggers like this: