Tuesday 6 March 2007

Back to Reality

The pub next door is being refurbished. You know the sort. Gastropub. (I used to say that without wincing). Open kitchen in stainless steel, leaping flames, sizzling meat on beds of veg being ferried to and fro. Always packed with young people with bags and big coats and without children.

Anyway, noone told us, but suddenly there was scaffolding outside and planks positioned cleverly over our front door so that emerging in the morning gave rise to a sort of Laurel and Hardy moment. “Hey Stanley, careful with that scaffolding pole… Doooohh!” So there we are with builders peering into our front window (why do they need to be there, the pub is next door after all) looking surprised to see me sitting on the sofa playing aeroplanes with my daughter. I could of course go round and ask them not to plank us inside our own home and get angry about them staring in through our window like baboons. And I can. Because I’m a bloke they might actually listen. (Or maybe look concerned for a moment and then laugh once I’ve vanished round the corner). But I’m not angry like I used to be. Plus they know where we live. Plus I’ll be able to do it in person soon when the constant banging away at our hallway ends in one of them bursting through the wall like Rutger Hauer in that scene in Blade Runner where he sticks his head through the plaster upstairs in the wet old hotel where doves are getting ready to flap poetically into the bright night sky. (It’s a famous cinematic continuity error, but I guess it’s difficult to film doves flying into a dark night sky.)

It sounds like someone’s got a pneumatic drill and they’re ramming it straight into the other side of the wall. I mean what do they think is going to happen? Isn’t it obvious that it’ll come out the other side? It’s like a nightclub for demented builders around here - dull thudding mostly, then manic bursts of staccato banging. Don’t they know I’ve got a bloody blog to write?

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