Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Bold and the Beautiful

A little while ago I was out with the Dusty Muffin and her Mum and we ended up having a very late night. The events that transpired in those late/early hours reminded me of an event that transpired quite a while ago when I was heading home – also a tad later than I had planned to.

I’d been out at the theatre rehearsing for a play that was nearing opening night – hence the lateness. As I turned into my road I had one of those “Oh no, why does this have to happen to me” moments.
Because there in front of me was of a chap battling to push-start a car of dubious make. Naturally I made the immediate assumption it was due to a flat battery and that I was going to be asked if I had jumper leads.
I have a confession to make; I never admit to having jumper leads. Don’t ask me why. Suffice to say they are way up there with hair brushes and toothbrushes – things you have but don’t lend out.
Anyway, back to my dilemma. Do I do the civil thing and offer assistance or do I head for my front door given the lateness of the hour?
I choose the latter.
I am doing well in my “out of character” choice and am heading towards my front door about to insert the key. Just before I pass the point of no return I glance back.
I cannot help myself. I have to see how they are progressing.
A glance was all it took for my conscience to kick in – visions of karmic backlash involving me, a deserted country road and a flat battery are running vividly through my brain!

“Do you need any help? I ask
“No it’s okay lady” car pusher says. Well dressed car pusher I note to self.
“Okay goodnight then” I COULD have said but of course I didn’t.
“Flat battery?” I persevered
“No, I think it’s the starter motor but really, it’s okay lady”

Again I could have left the scene and gone with Plan A but no, I go straight to Plan Q; the one where I proceed to step TOWARDS the rear of the veehickle.
On my marks, get set, go!
Very soon we were hurtling down the road at a speed good enough to ignite the spark plugs, battery and starter motor collectively; if only the “driver” would let the clutch out!
“Okay let it out now!!” I urged
There was no letting it out. What’s more we really needed to take advantage of our speed because ahead of us was a slight uphill!
“Make sure it’s in second gear then let the clutch out” I instructed through gritted teeth
”NOW!” I yelled as I let go and slowed to catch my breath
Nada. Nothing. And lo and behold gravity kicked in and the car slowed to a stop.
I stagger up to the driver’s window to ascertain what the problem could possibly be. While I am repeating my foolproof method with minute detail of what to do with the accelerator and brake after letting out the clutch, a few things assail my now irritated senses all at once:
~ the aroma of alcohol from the drivers seat
~ the now apparent youth of aforementioned well dressed car pusher
~ the fact that it is not winter yet the “driver” has the cuffs of his long sleeve t shirt pulled over his hands as though they are cold
~ the fact that there are no interior lights showing on the dashboard

And then the driver opened the car door, got out and suggested that I do the “driving” while they pushed.
That’s when I had my moment of clarity.

You see there was a time; back in the day, when at 5.30pm on weekdays I would be no place other than sprawled on my couch, eyes glued to the TV, soaking up my daily soapie. And every day, just before the nail biting ending, my neighbour would arrive home and park outside my lounge window. I never saw the neighbour/car because there was an 8’ high 3’ wide hedge between us. How was I aware of his arrival you might ask? Well he, his car, had a dodgy silencer - or maybe I had a dodgy television – probably a combination of both. Whichever it was my picture warbled until such time as he managed to get his car to turn off. Furthermore he had an even dodgier car door that sounded as though it was about to drop off its hinges as he opened it, got out and then slammed it. Every day. Roll credits.

Hence my moment.
There I was standing next to what HAD to be the same aforementioned veehickle because no two car doors could make that same falling-off-hinges sound.
And in my moment I realized not only was grand theft auto in progress, I was aiding and abetting!
So what to do became my dilemma.
Well, the actress in me kicked in. Hands were thrown up in exaggerated irritation and ends of tethers were reached. Car thieves were told that I was now tired and was going home; which I did.
Clearly neighbour was alerted; chase was given, apprehensions were made, police eventually arrived, statements were made.

“Hallo everyone. My name is Possum and I was a soapie addict”

1 comment:

  1. Inspector Possum Strikes again.

    Brilliant story, well told.

    Go girl!