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The International Writers Magazine: Consequences

A Morning Wave
Adam Bonus


So there I was in the middle of the pavement, soaked in my own urine with a butter knife in my hand. Wow. That must have been an incredible night out. That’s the only thought you can come up with when you wake up in the middle of your street doused in urine with cutlery in your hand. After of course: What the hell…?

I clambered to my aching, sodden feet (presumably the urine) and made my way to my flat in a retarded fashion. Luckily I was just outside of my residence on the opposite side of the road, as my sense of direction was impeded by the large black hole in my head that was sucking information out rapidly. Mainly the information regarding walking and how that is done with any dignity. I would never have got home if I had been anywhere else in the world. If I had awoken from my slumber on the next street it may as well of been Timbuktu, due to my non existent ability to navigate at a sufficient level.

The few people that happened to be passing down my usually quiet street were greeted with the terrible scraping sounds of denim and loafer on concrete and the embarrassing smell of wee. Yes Sweetheart, I screamed in my head as a passing old dear’s nose turned skywards: it appears I’ve piddled in my Levi’s. How they judge.

My ground floor flat was merely ten metres away, yet from the sweat that was emanating from my shiny forehead as I staggered to my door one would think I had just ran the Kalahari for sport.

A great effort ensued until I reached the front door were the key trouble began. Knowing that trying to fit the slim gold coloured piece of metal into the lock was going to be an obvious endurance test I stopped to reassure myself that life was good: There are no stairs to climb…Oh yes the perks of ground floor dwelling. This thought was of great comfort to a man who about to attempt the unthinkable: opening the front door. At least there are no stairs to be negotiated. Attempting to climb a flight would be impossible in your current condition, Boyo. How funny it is when one’s thoughts are articulate and eloquent at a time when keys and stairs are God’s main obstacles.

Door.
I got my chain of keys out and hopefully and rather wildly launched one into the lock. Not that one. At least it went in (embarrassingly, my current spouse Sarah has blurted that very sentence out in a failed consolation bid due to certain inadequacies). Perseverance is the word in these situations. Perseverance when there is no energy to persevere. Again and again the wrong key would find its way to the fore and increase my growing insanity. How many keys does a man friggin’ need on his chain? That last one was to my mum’s house! You haven’t lived there for eight years, man! Take some of these off…later on. The truth was I wouldn’t. I liked the feel of a meaty bunch of keys in hand and wouldn’t sacrifice the satisfaction I felt of creating annoyance amongst commuters on the tube when I rattled them in my pocket. But at this moment all I wanted and needed was one key, the right one.

Finally a key was greeted with a familiar and wonderful sound of ‘clink!’ That was a good ‘clink’. Friggin’ loved it. Beauty I thought. A wave of euphoria ran over me momentarily as I knew the settee now, was moments away.
As I ambled through the huge doorframe, I tripped on four days’ worth of mail. Not my mail of course; it was addressed to them upstairs.

Bloody upstairs. Those were the two noisiest chaps I had ever had the displeasure to fleetingly and sporadically meet in my life. All day long they played gangster rap or whatever they called it. Bloody nuisances from day one now their mail-sloth nearly caused me injury! What a world! I looked down at the floor to see what exactly tried to end my life and it was all junk. Typical, I fumed in a growing silent rage.

After the momentous task of opening the main door, I then had to open my door. Bloody doors…

Just as I was about to preach about how awful life was and begin to feel sorry for myself because of the amount of doors I had to try and open, it gave me that ’clink!’ first time. I’m not even allowed to feel sorry for myself. Just when I was getting to a platform to curse Sod’s Law and have a moan to Sarah when she finishes work, the door lets me open it first time. Great.

Despite the failed attempt on my life from the grounded post and largely non-functional limbs, my rage cleared as soon as I clapped my eyes on the sofa. Rather alarmingly to think now (and to those unfortunate to have seated themselves in my flat), my first port of call as soon as I entered was not to remove the previous contents of my bladder (any liquid I may usually find myself coated in would usually have been a priority), but to introduce my arse to the upholstery. The chair offered mild comfort to a damp, stinking man with a neck that felt like a he’d slept in a full-nelson. I stared at the clock in the corner: twelve o’clock which was rubbish because it had stopped at that precise time nigh on four years ago. The day’s age was a mystery.

After a long five minute rest (in fact a short thirty-minute-forty-winks from what I could gather), my lungs began to speak to me in great distress.
"I want a cigarette" said the left wind bag in a chilling voice.
"I concur" replied Right, obviously the well spoken of the two.

I shared my lungs’ concern and decided to make a move for tobacco. My yellowed jeans sang a sad farewell to the settee and I was up once more in a bid to secure a much needed nicotine fix.

I stood up and slowly looked right then tried to look left (which wasn’t happening; my neck was too ruined for that). I shifted my whole body so that what I saw from my right side was what I would have seen if I could have turned my head to the left. This wasn’t exactly the most effort I had ever put into a pursuit, but I was doing the best I could with the amount of give my neck had available.

The expedition to seek out fags grinded to a halt before it had truly started as it appeared I didn’t have any.
That’s a pretty harsh realisation to make in this state. No fags. No fags? No fags. I knew I didn’t have any because I simply didn’t keep any around. I bought fags when I needed them so not to indulge in chain smoking when they are purchased in bulk. When they are sat there the temptation to relentlessly light up is multiplied by: It’s ok…there’s a hundred and eighty-seven left…

It didn’t look good for my lungs (or it did depending on how you see it) as I conceded that I wouldn’t smoke today. The convenient local Tesco Express was inconveniently not local enough. Sure, it may have been but a street and a left turn away, but Christ, I struggled to unlock the door, man! And who’s to say I’d have any money anyway? For all I know I could have suffered a mugging; butter knife in hand to ward away my opportunist attackers before enduring a vigorous and remorseless raping; a violation of the worst kind. I scared myself momentarily with that thought.

My brain concocting stories of forced bum-love didn’t ease the great pain my lungs were feeling, but I had to let go of the notion that a soothing cigarette was on the horizon. Sorry boys. Tabs are off the menu.

The disappointment was evident in my face. The mirror told me so when I looked in it. It also told me that I didn’t look good, to say the least. My hair was matted and seemed a far cry from the perfect style I had constructed the evening previous in my preparation for what would turn out to be an astonishingly expensive night out (we were going to this new bar. A bar that charged four quid for a pint! I didn‘t even want to go, but those ‘friends’ of mine insisted).

My muddy brown eyes (gathering from the state I was in, it was conceivable that it was real mud) held bags from beneath them heavier than I’d ever carted from the supermarket in my life. I wiped the sweat from my brow and opened my mouth to check my teeth; Yep, definitely on the cider last night. They looked like those found at an archaeological dig: yellow and decaying. Still, I consoled myself, at least they’re intact. You weren’t slapped about last night by anybody with my backside on his mind. ‘At least…’ happens to begin a lot of sentences in my life. I wasn’t an optimist, but my cynicism had definitely reduced. I was still a miserable young man, but at least I was learning (that book the woman bought me was obviously working). People knew my outlook of life and always tried to cheer me up by saying the opposite of a statement they would of said and adding the ’At least…’ prefix as a kind of positive spin on events (though I found it amusing when it couldn‘t be done). If they couldn’t find a shiny, happy alternate, an uncomfortable silence began until I broke it with trademark rubbish. Depressing, pessimistic rubbish. Thankfully, for them at least and their comfort zone, they needed to do this less with each passing day (and each passing chapter of ‘Embracing Life’).

Moving from the mirror in the front room I dug deep into my pockets to explore and salvage what was left of my cash and to assess what was taken from me in the alleged mugging. My wallet unfolded itself in my hand and I proceeded to check what was left. I had two five pound notes, seventeen pence in change and a receipt from Subway. Sub of the day. That explained the brownish stain on my white t-shirt that I had just spotted in the mirror. Meatball. Good call. All my cards were there (the ill advised MasterCard and various store cards that crippled me monthly) and a condom that would offer little to no protection from anything. I kept it as decoration. And as cover in an emergency situation were sex MUST be had. Knowing my luck I’d probably get Aids and triplets with it on were as I wouldn’t if I’d gone in ’alone’.
I had my Zippo and my wrist watch which these days acted more as a pocket time piece due to the unfortunate misplacement of the strap. It was twelve o’clock exactly on inspection. Well…how about that. Midday exactly. The old sly dog on the wall was right. It was broken, though. The clock hadn’t suddenly re-found it’s Mojo (or new Batteries).
Pooling my possessions onto the coffee table I gathered that I hadn’t been robbed by some hoodlum, and had probably avoided an anal ambush.

I walked into the kitchen, remembered I had no food and returned to the living room. Sitting on the other seat of the sofa, I found the remote with my left buttock and inadvertently switched the box on. The noise of some program I didn’t recognise scared the crap out of me. I felt deafened by the time I managed to manipulate the volume button.

After another few minutes of rest I realised the butter knife again sitting on the floor where I had dropped it walking in. The knife was the main source of confusion. I could cope with the urine and pavement duvet. Though odd, that sort of thing happens to a lot of inebriated young men on a Friday and Saturday night. But the knife, the knife, perplexed me. Some questions needed answers. But first, some legs needed washing.

As I entered the little bathroom, a sudden feeling of joy washed over me before the water did. A smile found itself on to my face and a thought inserted itself in my head: it’s not so bad… In those two seconds I felt…normal. My years of melancholy felt underground and didn’t exist in that moment. I felt human. As human as everyone else. It was a quaint little encounter with bliss and just as soon as it came, it went, but it sure felt good to know that I had experienced it. Maybe that feeling would come and visit me again sometime but have a longer stay within me. Maybe. Strange.
I turned towards the shower and removed my clothing. Right, I thought as I rubbed my hands together; Time to wash the piss off.

© Adam Bonus December 2008
adam_bonus_89@hotmail.com

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