Once you’ve read glove #1 (still a handful of copies left at £3 via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org), I suggest you immediately get on @RazurCuts issue #2. This wonderful Scottish Lit Zine looks great and reads even better. Here’s my contribution to it -:
Par for the course, I just about made it into graft on time. The electronic welcome display showed 7.59 as I yawned and blinked through the main entrance. For a change, I wasn’t bad with the beer, as I’d not been out on the Sunday, though I was struggling with a hangover-in-law after lying around all day, farting on the sofa, following Saturday’s post-match gallon and the rest. Good win that one mind. Put us right back in the play-off frame with the international break coming up.
So it was 8.06 by the time I’d got the compulsory grande white Americano from the canteen, exchanged the usual pleasantries with the lads behind the counter and on reception, enabling me to settle down for my traditional Monday morning crap at work’s expense in the disabled bog downstairs in H Block. Proper ritual this one; always let the first flurries of gluey shite explode staccato style into the pan while I skim through Facebook and the BBC news app as the crap pile mounts. Then at half time, so to speak, get vaguely cleaned up, using plenty of the generous stock of hypoallergenic wet wipes so benevolently provided by the Executive Team, on the insistence of the Compliance Department, acting as tribunes for those who suffer from each and every kind of physical impairment imaginable. Never am I more grateful for my IBS diagnosis than at the very start of my weekly allocated 37.5 contracted hours on site.
In the normal shitters across the complex, poor, able-bodied bastards are giving themselves holes like a blood orange, scrubbing away the recalcitrant remnants of their weekend pints and curry with recycled bog roll you could sand your skirting boards down with. Meanwhile, I’m assuming the position for the second voiding of the bowels. This cack is generally an amorphous affair; gone are the meat and beer scented sticky, ebony stools of download 1, as in their place a quart of viscous, ochre tinged, diseased porridge bursts forth. It stinks and it stings. While waiting for the tell-tale lower gut grumbling that signifies I’m running on empty (bar the inevitable clouds of my trademark light, contemporary feminine fragrance that will punctuate the rest of the day and possibly Tuesday as well), meaning bog break is almost over, I leisurely flick through the latest football news, check my betting accounts and leave a few offensive tweets for the lasses in our squad, before getting all Red Adair on my ringpiece and especially my hands, then drain the coffee, zip up and flush. Welcome to the working week.
That particular Monday, I made it into the post-Glastonbury meets the kitchen from Withnail & I style disaster area we call an office, or Productivity Station as The Executive Team have re-designated them, at 8.42. My phone was already down to 57% battery. I fired up the PC so I could charge the fucker and stuck the kettle on, while breakfasting on a pair of Steak Bakes. They’d cooled enough while I’d been downloading software in the H Block for the filling not to be like napalm on the roof of my mouth and I ate the first one ravenously, before savouring the second.
As ever my theoretical boss and fellow elected union official Sandra Mills demonstrated the kind of immaculate timekeeping that’s got her two written warnings for absenteeism in the past 5 years. She waltzed in as the kettle clicked off and the computer blasted out a deafening Microsoft signature welcome. Making a point and a pair of coffees, I affected an exaggerated nod towards the clock on the wall.
- What’s up with you? Shit the bed?
- Fuck off you helmet. I’m not in the mood. Me and him were bevvying in the garden all day yesterday. Today was going to be a write-off until I checked my emails. You seen the latest from the circus upstairs?
Part of Millsa’s Action Plan to improve her timekeeping had been an agreement she’d keep in regular contact when off site, by accessing work emails on her Standard Operative Issue smart phone. Hence why she was brandishing a decade old Blackberry that was the organisational device of choice, so no daft cunt got their own handset, which no doubt would boast a library of 80s Frankie Vaughan movies, salacious posed snaps of your fella with a great big lob on and risqué conversations with randoms on Whats App and Tinder, mixed up with the spreadsheets and word documents The Executive Team sent out.
Millsa was waving the Blackberry so angrily, I couldn’t get a proper glimpse of the text, so I took it from her and read it at my leisure, while blowing the coffee cool enough to drink. The title FOR THE ATTENTION OF ALL STAFF and attendant red exclamation mark signifying the communication was deemed to be in the urgent category, immediately put me on my guard. Presumably it was why Millsa had turned on the extractor fan full pelt and opened the windows wide, so she could get to work on her third Hamlet of the morning, while endlessly repeating a mantra of the fucking bastards; the dirty twats. I’d been smoke free over 9 years, but I almost got back on the tabs after reading this cunt;
Recently, we have noticed that a great deal of supra-organisational waste is appearing in our skips. We are keeping a close eye on our premises to see if people external to the business are responsible for this, but we would also like to remind staff of the rules regarding waste disposal:
- Employees are not authorised to use the skips for personal use
- Any evidence of this happening will be a disciplinary matter as this contravenes our staff code of conduct
The company is charged for waste by weight and there are penalty charges for unauthorised refuse disposal, such as duvets, mattresses and tyres, all of which have been discarded in recent weeks. Disposing of personal waste in organisational skips is unnecessarily increasing the costs of the service to the business. Should a member of staff have any items they are unable to dispose of through normal domestic refuse collections, please could they contact the Compliance Department for advice on disposal options?
The Executive Team
It had obviously been one of those scheduled emails, timed to go off like bombs in shopping centres with no warning; guaranteed to cause maximum devastation when every fucker logged on that morning, as it had been sent at 7.55. No cunt had warned us about it and we’d be the daft bastards who’d have to make sense of this shite.
Handing Millsa the Blackberry, I had a skeg through my own emails; sure enough the Executive Team’s breakfast Molotov cocktail was the first unread message, but following it were about 30 responses, almost all from irate members who were wondering what the fuck you going to do about this shite? Fair point and it was something to pursue with full timers, so I fired off an email to HR announcing I’d be taking agreed facility time that afternoon to assess the ramifications of this initiative, then altered my work calendar to out of office on union business. As ever I knew I’d need a few hours’ kip before the weekly 6-a-side with the girls.
Experience told me, if I could find some spurious reason for threatening a work-to-rule or formal protest, another madcap idea from The Executive Team would die a death. I was a proper stickler for contractual details as a way of fucking the bosses up the arse, while Millsa was more creative in her methods, as befits a semi-functional alcoholic and torch bearer for the Situationist International. As it stood, we’d not even had any follow-up instructions on what the pair of us were supposed to be doing in The Compliance Department. Mind, neither of us were in a hurry to find out.
Millsa, as she’d finished her cigar and cuppa, hunkered down in her gorilla’s nest improvised pit at the back of the stock cupboard; several pads of flipchart paper as a mattress, couple of reams of A4 for a pillow and the Union branch banner as a duvet. If she was crashing out before half 10, she really must have been on the gargle yesterday. Equality Act or no Equality Act, sleep apnoea and stress-related narcolepsy gave our Sandra a solid gold excuse to lie around, doing fuck all while getting paid for it.
While Millsa dozed untidily, I pissed about on the net, reading the news and that, fired off a few texts to the lasses about tickets for Preston away and supped another coffee. Had to be careful with the caffeine; too much and I’d never get my head down in the afternoon. Suddenly, the whole day went to shit. An email entitled REFUSE DISPOSAL PROTOCOL BRIEFING pinged into mine and Millsa’s inboxes. It was from Senior Deputy Chief Executive Audrey Manning, demanding our presence in her office, known by everyone as The Torture Chamber, in ten minutes. When Big Bernard clicks her fingers, Shop Steward or not, you do as she says. I gently toed Sandra a couple of times in the lower back to wake her up, before giving her the gen. Millsa knew the fucking score. Trouble lay ahead.
A quick slug of mouthwash and a dirty green piss later, the pair of us timidly knocked on Bernard’s door. Yes she shrilled and we slunk in, heads down. Sit ladies. Now colleagues, you’ll know why I’ve summoned you. The Organisation needs to take a firm but fair line with fly-tippers and so The Executive Team have come up with a plan. No debate. A monologue. Rapid volleys of instruction. Eradicating this blight is top priority. All other duties were put on hold, which fucked the weekly Friday afternoon pool marathon in The Eagle with the gang from Repro for a start. The full SP was this; fresh, empty skips were getting dropped off Tuesday afternoon and it would be our job to assess the appropriateness or otherwise of potential deposits on a round the clock basis, from remote locations, with technological support, decisively intervening where necessary. Basically, she wanted more CCTV cameras installed with the greatest urgency and us daft twats to watch the footage on screen in the office, while Radgey Geoff, the Security Officer, hid behind a bush in the car park to gather information for the purpose of eliminating any contraventions of the code of conduct, by making examples of proven transgressors. It wasn’t up for discussion. She was giving us ample time off to adjust the old body clocks, as we were on an emergency rota; 8pm to 6am for the rest of the week. Good job there wasn’t a game on Saturday as I’d have been well fucked, especially if it was away.
Me and Millsa tossed a coin and she won, so I got the job of telling the gang in Maintenance we needed half a dozen of these new style micro CCTV cameras installing by the skips, splayed out to cover all angles, while she finished off her morning siesta. Their gaffer was midway through a fortnight’s cruise round the Azores with this bit of cock she’d met on PlentyOfFish. In return, the rest of the team were doing fuck all with their days. They actually quite enjoyed getting the drills and ladders out for a bit and put the cameras up in no time at all, despite the bracket being a bit on the short side, meaning we had a pair of cameras left over. Tiny fucking things. Fit them in your pocket, lens the size of a two bob bit. I took the two leftovers with me when I headed back up the office, where I woke Sandra up then fucked off home for a well-earned rest.
After I got back from 6-a-side (won 4-2), I made the most of the unexpected lie-in by heading out for a few pints to watch the Stoke v Palace game. None of the lasses were about, but so fuck; some of the old fellas were in, so we cracked on about the football. Half a dozen Stella always do taste sweeter on a school night.
Rested, refreshed and in possession of a well-stocked bait box, I pulled up in the car park at graft 36 hours after I’d shambled through the entrance on Monday morning. Millsa was outside enjoying a pre-shift Hamlet, security lightning glinting off her specs as she tried to appear inconspicuous beneath the risible parody of arboreal pulchritude that was the smoking area. Only place you’ll ever find deciduous obstructive pulmonary disorder, I’m telling you.
- Aye aye Captain. Caught any pirates yet?
- Keep your fucking gob shut, daft cunt. Stress; it can happen to the best of us, or the worst in Millsa’s case. Here, get up them stairs and get logged on, so we can see if any fucker’s trying to break in.
The temperature was dropping, so I didn’t mind. Fired up the PC, opened the surveillance software in monitor mode and watched slow tempo cuts between 4 views of fuck all; it was like one of those Danish cop dramas I can never be fucking bothered with. After about half an hour I lost interest, started pissing about on my phone, like any normal shift. Found a stream of the Spain versus Croatia Under 21s game. Less entertaining than the CCTV pictures, but at least it was football.
Millsa shambled in about half 9. Radgey Geoff, the wannabe hard cunt in a blue cable-knit with elbow patches and a short-sleeved blue shirt with epaulettes, was on his rounds, locking up. Ordinarily he started at 2 and finished at 10, which would have meant me and Millsa against the world until 6, when GI Gary, the daylight Geoff, came on shift. However the Radge was also on an emergency rota; 6-6 for the week, with most of it spent in his van, scanning the gaffe with night sight binoculars. The Walkergate Travis Bickle. A coked up nutter with a vigilante fantasy. Sean Dyche’s body double with a subscription to Soldier of Fortune.
Meantime, we watched Newsnight and had a cuppa, before Lady Sandra jangled the mega bunch of skeleton keys, which told us we were going on an adventure. It was no surprise it involved the Executive Suite.
- No fucking half inching the Belgian chocolates or sachets of moisturiser from the shithouse. Understood?
Message received loud and clear. Liberating stuff that wasn’t intended for the likes of us had seen Radgey Geoff kicked down from assistant transport boss to janitor of lunacy because he’d chored a dozen sweet ciders from a broken pallet the year before. Only one CCTV camera back then and he’d kept his film off its radar, only for Big Bernard to spot the Radge supping a couple straight off then stashing the rest in the boot. Caught red handed. Fait a fucking compli opined Millsa.
With trademark menace Radgey Geoff described The Executive’s decision to discipline him as Imbarrathin, spitting the word out the side of his gob like a ball of dark green hockle. Me and Millsa thought we’d have to work like fuck to keep him within the loving embrace of the organisation, but Big Bernard had shown a hitherto undiscovered compassionate side and offered the security gig, probably because the Radge gave off the testosterone stench of the tough guy he wasn’t. So here he was, this poacher turned gamekeeper, glowering and menacing every cunt that wandered into reception without an appointment. Same money, less work, but no prospects; just what we all aspire to. Had we ever had a thanks from him? Had we shite. Baldy little fuck pig.
Anyway, Millsa led us through the luxurious inner sanctum and into Bernard’s Torture Chamber. Notice anything? Sandra inquired, giving a theatrical wave in the direction of the two opposite corners of the room. At first I gazed uncomprehendingly, then saw the beauty of her handiwork. You’d need to be pretty alert to notice she’d spent the last couple of hours removing two intruder alarm sensors and replaced them with the spare CCTV cameras. Good eh? It’s movement activated recording. A butterfly drops its bait on the ceiling and cameras roll. Tomorrow we can do some proper surveillance work…
The rest of the shift drifted into turgid oblivion. Millsa caught up on stuff on the iPlayer she’d missed, while I read for a bit, played on the net and burned a few copies of the new Angel Olsen and King Creosote albums for the gang. Come six o’clock when GI Gary bursts in the place, whistling and singing snatches of Beach Boys and Creedence numbers, while running up and down flights of stairs, bare chested of course, unlocking rooms ready for the day ahead, we’re shutting the door on epicentre of our operation that’s smelling of socks, farts and Millsa’s leftover microwaved kebab. Lady Sandra’s meeting her old fella at Wetherspoon’s by the station for the full English and a few peeves. I’m tempted, but I really need a kip so pass on the offer.
Wednesday day time was a non-event; I slept until around 4, cooked a big veggy curry, ate half of it, packed the rest for my bait and watched some shit on the telly. I had emails to write, a more than visible social media profile to raise and the latest When Saturday Comes to read, but I saved them for the night shift.
Parking the motor, I was surprised to see another vehicle in the car park besides Radgey’s van. Obviously Sandra’s little difficulties occasioned by being found asleep at the wheel in the car park of The Rising Sun after a late one (the engine still running, kebab detritus spilled down her from face to feet and a blood alcohol reading of 320 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood) precluded her from driving, meaning she kept Streamline cabs in business almost singlehandedly. Mind when she had a car, it wasn’t a silver BMV Series 5 Gran Tourismo, with the personalised number plate AM 666.
What the fuck was Big Bernard doing here at this time of night? The first thought was she’d spotted Millsa’s cameras and was about to go to town on us. However the cheery wave she shot in my direction as she locked up and headed for the door suggested otherwise. Sliding into my chair in Disgracelands, as I’d taken to calling the office, cigar toting Sandra expressed her disappointment at the footage from The Torture Chamber. Big Bernard had been off-site all day and the skips were still empty, so there was nowt to watch and nothing for it but to sit tight and do the joke of a job we got paid for.
Except, it seemed Radgey Geoff wasn’t doing the job he was paid for. The four wide angle cameras on the gantry gave a juddering, staccato account of his progress across the car park: quitting the van, a quick call on the mobile, then furtively glancing from side to side as he used his master key to let himself in by the side entrance to the Executive Suite.
This was getting interesting. Since Big Bernard was the only fucker down there, as The Radge knew full well, this was either a suicide mission or a clandestine meeting. Instinct told us to flick over to The Torture Chamber cameras and how we cursed the lack of sound to go with these images. The cameras, sensitive to the impact of Big Bernard’s ponderous-gaited pacing of the room, resplendent in a tight-laced blood-red basque and colour matched spike heel stilettos. Bernard looked like Phil “The Power” Taylor impersonating Wonder Woman, arms akimbo and eyes fixed on the door.
This is going to be the best night of our lives chortled Millsa and she cast the Hamlets aside and sparked up a long, smooth Cuban. Bernard’s door opened and in stepped Radgey Geoff; bald, nude, oiled and hard.
Size of that fucker, I exploded, zooming in on his impressive, veined cock; thick as fucking a phone book. Millsa looked at me with distaste and exhaled a dismissive cloud of cigar smoke.
The two of them obviously knew each other’s trigger points. Bernard rushed to nosh him, crouching like a second row prop at a set scrum. Almost straight off, The Radge yanked a handful of soft peroxide undercut to stop her and avoid spending his wad at first base. She leaned back over the desk and his tongue fired in and out of her hole like a ravenous gecko on a rock.
Are you recording this? I demanded. Millsa, rapt with concentration, nodded furiously.
Get in the hole! Get in the fucking hole! She screamed at Radgey Geoff like the 18th green at the Open, oblivious to the waste of breath her words were. Fucking hell man, him indoors is like the speaking clock. Finished on the third stroke every fucking time. This is boss material for the frig fridge I’m telling you. Not only that, it’s a potential retirement villa once I show this to Bernard. Horrible fat bastard she is.
The performance was reaching a crescendo. Bernard straddled The Radge, pumping up and down, looking a bit like Claire Balding on a mountain bike. We missed the money shot, but you could sense it when Bernard arched her back like an obese rodeo rider. It wasn’t the end enough; the piece de resistance saw her disentangle herself, then squat deliberately over Radgey’s dial and give him a proper golden shower. More yellow than green with albumenous flecks of Geoff jizz, it dripped from his face, ran over the edge of her desk and pooled on the dark blue carpet. That’s going to stain you realise Millsa howled. The Radgey fucker didn’t flinch the whole flood, didn’t blink, didn’t smile. This wasn’t pleasure, this was business.
Outside, a squeal of brakes, a crash of porcelain on metal, a slamming of doors, an engine revving . I flicked the cameras over and saw three fellas flytipping a load of building site leftovers, then racing for their transit and fucking off. I hit the electronic locking system, but the main gate clanged shut seconds too late. Bernard and The Radgey’s fuck session seemed an age ago.
Millsa hit save all streams and we wandered down to the skips for a skeg. Tiles, couple of rubble sacks, bits of broken pipe, a smashed bog. Usual sort of thing we’d been getting landed with since they started building the new Kingham Park estate. Back in her business suit Bernard’s heels clacked across the car park as Radgey Geoff trailed, uselessly waving a torch about.
Have you any incriminating footage that may help The Corporation apprehend who is responsible for such disgusting behaviour? Bernard barked.
No and yes, Millsa smirked enigmatically and headed for the smoking shelter. Cigar anyone?
Nine years of being nicotine free went right out the window as I headed to join her. Mind it was something worth celebrating with a fine Havana.