Friday, January 20, 2006

The stickiest situation since Sticky the Stick Insect got stuck on a sticky bun

Every Thursday morning I have a battle of wits on the bus. Yes, Thursday mornings are when I go to my special school. And yes, I have a battle of wits with a mentally disabled person. This is not particularly fair you may say, but it is harder than you think. The fare for the bus ride must be paid at the end of the journey, rather than the beginning, and there is always a queue of excitable peopele scrambling for change. Most of the people on the bus are attending appointments or classes at the special hospital so it all takes some time, and I like to sit and wait, rather than rush to the front and spill all my money on the floor and then be totally unable to actually count when I do get to the machine. Which has happened. There is one girl however who also likes to sit and wait and get off last – and every week this severely handicapped girl and I have a 'wait-off'. Normally I am the one to crack first – after all, have you ever tried to stare down and impose your will on a vulnerable person? It’s impossible (unless of course you are Ming the Merciless), and every time I have to stop myself from doing it “Geoffrey Davies!” I say to myself (always the full name when in trouble – a habit picked up from mothers) “what do you think you’re doing? Let the poor girl go last if she wants to, for shame Geoffrey, for shame...”
(Reading this makes me think that maybe I actually belong on the ‘special bus'.)
Recently however this girl has not been joining in, she’s been leaving her game at home and scrambling to get off with the rest of them – in short, I win. Ha!

This special school, - it garners a lot of blog material you think? A blogging friend of mine (who for now shall remain nameless as others have resentfully commented how often he, or - er - she, has been mentioned in this blog) and I had a discussion about how once you start writing a blog suddenly everything else becomes material for it. This came from an argument we had a few minutes before. We were talking about the previous night when we had exactly the same thought at exactly the same time: what excellent blogging material! Then we argued about who had dibs on it. The argument was not won by either of us, so, like Mussolini in the Aventine secession, I am seizing victory:

Last Saturday night Brad and I went out for a curry before meeting up with some other JETs at the Pot Still - the local pub-themed pub (has a pool table, darts, and sells Guinness, Bass and Heineken, all at extortionate prices). As often happens so soon after pay day Santoshi was full of other JETs and, well, to cut a long story short, Brad and I and the English crew – Jake, Emily, and Emily – ended up out on the town.

We also picked up a Singaporean and Dutchman at the Pot Still, both of who work in oil and were in Toyama on business and had spent the last few days in their hotel bars wishing they’d met up with us sooner. The Singaporean, Vejay, was such a big fan of Liverpool FC that he’d had the badge and “You’ll Never Walk Alone” tattooed on his entire back. He was awfully flush with his money, buying bottles of vodka and flashing his Rolex everywhere. But he was a fun sort of guy that you want to have around when trying to have fun. He was a total letch though. After showing us photos of his beautiful wife and kids back in Singapore he then started to describe his sexual adventures whilst travelling the world on business. The Dutch guy, Raimi from Rotterdam, was quiet, but in an engaging European kind of way.

At 1am we were trawling around Toyama looking for a decent nightspot, and eventually decided on the red light district. Among the various clubs, and signs listing ‘massages’ by the hour, we came across a bar we know called ‘Penny Blacks’, or as the JET community calls it, The Russian Bar. Its main clientele, obviously, is Russian, so it’s a little shady. However, any bar that only serves beers in multiples of three can’t be that bad, can it? Well apparently it can. After a few beers Emily wanted to dance so we went to the floor (about three inches away, it was that kind of place). Three grunty-looking Russian guys were on the dance floor, not dancing – just standing there, among the crazy Japanese girls. “You, Russian!” shouted one at me as I tried to dance, very badly. “Uh, no, British!” I called back, and resumed my 'dancing'. “No, Russian! You Russian, you dance with us!” and he pulled me over to them by my hand. Okaaaay, thought I as he kept hold of my hand. I looked for escape routes while Emily looked on, slightly perturbed. "Oh, Emily, look – over there!" I made exagerated motions of waving at somebody at the bar, said lovely talking to you to the Russians, and made our escape. Several minutes later we judged it safe to go back to our table. On the way one the Russians, rather sulkily, put a stool in my way. I walked round it and back to the table. Whilst standing next to the table another of the Russians danced into the back of me and then, as I turned to apologise, offered me out. Then the Singaporean dude said he used to box in the navy and offered to hit him for me. And then it was time to leave.

The next morning I felt like a Frenchman had moved into my head and was trashing the place with his drunken arty friends.


Blogger Chris said...

I must be slow, but what was the trouble? They wanted to dance with you??

I totally know what you mean about blogging material! Just the other day, I too was in a sticky situation, and during the whole ordeal, I consoled myself by thinking about the great posting it was going to make!

6:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Er retard yeah.

Er no Geoff

12:21 PM  

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