Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Twenty Years After

My apologies for not posting recently - been catching up on my reading, although in the case of Matt Ridley's 'The Rational Optimist', in my opinion a thoroughly squalid and meretricious book, I might as well not have bothered - I couldn't let the occasion pass without comment.

I became physically symptomatic on Friday 13th September 1991 - a day that will live in infamy.

The very insecure old solicitor whose tedious Rumpeltskinian shenanigans got the ball rolling is now dead, so, if only to preserve a point of good manners he was never very keen on observing himself, 'de mortuis nil nisi bonum' and all that. At that time in his life, his early '60's, he looked like Stroessner on the slide - a pot belly on a five foot five inch frame somehow miraculously suspended above a grey Bobby Charlton combover and a pair of Reactolite Rapides. Every damn day he would lose confidence in himself and what he had directed should be done, and blow his top with someone as a result. It seemed like every damn day there would be an apologetic missal posted on the office notice board saying that each day was a new start, or some crap like that; the classic behaviour pattern of an abusive spouse.

However, as far as I was concerned any relationship with the man ended at about 14.30 on Friday 13th September 1991, two months into a two year traineeship on, if memory serves, a very sunny early autumn afternoon on Sauchiehall Street, when the ritualised bollocking, almost a hazing, of being forced to stand in front of his desk while he ripped up my work in front of me while screaming at the top of his voice, got too much for me and both my head and right arm suddenly snapped from the middle to the right and would not stop snapping no matter what I did ('duties of care', anyone?). I remember running through the office from his room on the ground floor to mine on the mezzanine level just to get away from him, and I don't remember anything else of that afternoon. A year long diagnostic process followed thereafter, I was diagnosed in November 1992 and by the grace of God I'm still bloody well here.

It's been an interesting twenty years - you can't have 22 jobs in 20 years and not have an interesting time - but the high points have, of course, been becoming a husband and then becoming a father. He's a lovely boy, you know. I suppose many fathers look at their children slightly wistfully, hoping that they will be able to do more with their talents than their fathers have. Maybe he'll be the one to crack writing for a living.

On the other hand, I'm not dead yet.



Blogger Martin Meenagh said...

and glad I am to have you to read of a lunchtime!

14 September, 2011 11:50  
Blogger Martin said...

Always happy to oblige, Martin.

16 September, 2011 22:55  

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