We all go through life with the preconception that we are immortal and cool as cucumbers. Nothing will phase us or derail our cool cucumber train but fate is a fickle bitch indeed and it is only time till even the coolest cucumber suffers from fates funny and fickle sense of humour! I spent so many years riding high on the hog of excess and cool misdemeanour’s that I was certain I was the “god” of mischief himself but Loki had a lesson to teach me and boy am I learning all about just how much of an amateur I truly am in this sick world where Loki rules supreme.
I raised hell for years and may have even had the devil himself on the brink of emotional collapse, seeking counselling and joining the AA out of total frustration. My partying was legendary and I truly believed that I was a legend in my own lunch time! However as with all waves there is a crest and then there is the inevitable crash.
This is where I find myself currently. I am in the chaos of the undertow being spun around arse about face with my costume floating away in the current. I am the laughing stock on the beach as I stand there in my untanned birthday suit, proverbially speaking of course. My downward spiral began back in 2007 in late November with a silly car accident that was not really my fault at all (really) but I was involved and my lack of financial integrity made me ripe for the picking by the company whose car I had a fender bender with. That little débâcle would ultimately lead me to paying 5500 Rand to settle their insurance excess.
Now we fast forward five years to November 13th 2012 where I am delivering magazines to various shops and centres. This should be a doddle and even an idiot should be able to master it easy peasy. Hey, I arrive at the centre and unload the boxes containing the free community magazines, put them on the rack and hey presto job done! What could possibly go wrong???? Let me tell you how Loki ambushed me and drove me to the edge of sanity! That sick little Norse god of mischief conspired, planned, sniggered and hatched a diabolical plot to break my already shaky confidence. ( 5 years of crappy luck and bad choices has taken its toll on my psyche and personality). Loki sat and laughed his ass off as I made my name mud to the 17th degree while off loading 1 box, I reiterate 1 box of magazines into a trolley (shopping cart) outside the store in question. I was in the parking lot and the day was hot and my back aching from the deliveries prior and so in my infinite wisdom I decided to use their trolley to make my task a tad easier. I loaded the box which weighs 20 or so kilos into the trolley only to hear a dreaded crack! The frigging box had caused a crack in the frame of the trolley and to make the event worse the stores` “trolley cop” was standing 20 feet away and witnessed the situation. Now I had not thrown the box into the trolley in question, I had not misused the trolley or abused it any way or form and yet the piece of crap cracked with only the weight of one lousy box of magazines in it! I stood there and stared at the trolley in disbelief thinking to myself “what the frig?” The trolley jockey immediately descended upon me and the trolley like he were a member of the special task force.
I was duly escorted by “Chuck McTrolley” to the manager of the store along with the offending box (1 lousy box) of magazines in it as proof of my dastardly deed. I am officially a trolley bandit and wantonly assaulted the trolley causing grievous harm to its frame, according to McTrolley naturally.
Of all the trolleys in the vicinity I would choose the shoddy one. There was another trolley equidistant to where I had parked but my instinct was to walk to the one on the right and the trolley I chose was the one that was destined to break today and I was the chump who was going to be the one who is going to be held liable! One phrase popped to mind “unfrigginbelievable!”
At the store I was led to “Moron number 1” who immediately went into a DEFCON 4 state of emergency and even his neck became red and inflamed as if he were stung by a bee! He immediately chastised me for the infraction and then went onto blaming me for a trolley that had been used on the previous Saturday by someone else to deliver magazines and had left it behind the escalators with 4 yes FOUR empty boxes in it! Holy jumping Jesuit monks I felt as if I were going to be dragged outside and summarily executed! Shit I did not even deliver those magazines and I had only loaded 1 yes one box into their trolley, so why is “Moron number 1” attacking me? I accidentally broke the trolley which in all likely hood was already weakened by gross overloading perpetrated by the rich Ballito folk who used it before me!!!!! No matter that I tried in vain to explain that this is my second day doing this menial task and that I am basically unemployed. I did not break the thing on purpose! It was an unfortunate accident! No go and no understanding the blinkers were on. “Moron number 1” then marched me and the stricken trolley to “Moron number 2” who with much gusto inflated his silly importance as the chief microphone manager and informed me that I was liable for the busted trolley and would have to fork out R1250.00 (one thousand two hundred and fifty rand) as I had “murderlised” their beloved trolley which was most likely on its way out in any case. I was the dumb sucker who happened to choose the ailing trolley and be the proverbial “ straw that broke the camels back”.
Anyway I digress a tad. “Moron number 2” then hefts the telephone to his ear as if he were calling the situations room at the White house to report some insidious attack on trolley freedom , he then stood there full of bravado looking down at me from his perch and using the quotation fingers tells me that everyone thinks that just because they are “a big supermarket” that does not mean they must take the cost of the stricken trolley. He waffles into the phone to “Moron number 3” in what I can only describe as “wind talking enigma code” as I could not make out chicken wing from samoosa as to what was being discussed. I am then led to ”Moron number 3” who speaks to me through the bars of the security gate by the office all the while giving me the skew eyeball treatment. I am trying my best to remain calm and humble explaining that I did not intentionally assault their trolley but it was to nil avail. I now know what it is like to be incarcerated and interrogated in Guantanamo bay detention centre! These “morons” are the “guano” guards and stupid as bat shit! Apparently client liaison, public relations does not exist here in “Gitmo” super market Ballito.
“Moron number 3” disappears for a good ten minutes while I begin to fall into despair at the thought that half of what I am supposed to earn for delivering these magazines is going to be paid to the National chain store whose dilly trolley bust while I was using it! As it is I earn very little and own diddley squat and here I stand lost, forlorn, hot, sweaty,tired and emotionally scarred while these goof balls destroy the little confidence I have left. Eventually a female employee “Chicky Doo” saunters past to type out the letter I am to be presented with and tries to be “upbeat” with me by telling me that “Moron number 3” is running around like a chicken without a head, strangely I am not surprised by this revelation. After what seemed an Eon has passed “Moron number 3” arrives at the security gate and hands me the paper to sign, this is starting to feel like one of those coerced admissions of guilt that prisoners of war are given to sign denouncing their governments legitimacy and stance in the conflict in which they are fighting.
I herewith retort that “why don`t they just phone the cops or better yet drag me out back and shoot me?” This apparently does not compute with “Moron number 3” who simply wants my signature on his beloved admission of guilt. I do the right thing and quietly accept my Manchurian candidate fate and sign the paper dreading to hear the trigger phrase that will set me on a path of trolley destruction of biblical and galactic proportions however the command does not come but instead the letter in hand now states that I owe the chain store R1500.00 (one thousand five hundred rand) for the trolley. Holy cow I did not think that inflation was so rife in South Africa? A moment before it was R1250 and then ten minutes later it has rocketed by R250. Hell why don`t they just break out a pair of pliers and take the fillings from my teeth as well while they are at it?!?!?! My mind temporarily meanders back to 1994 and I am wondering how Mickey and Mallory Knox would have handled this situation? A warm fond feeling albeit a short one trickles through my mind as I recall the film in question before being yanked back to reality and the circus I am currently in.
My final act of defiance and rebellion was to toss my store “smart shopper” card in the dust bin on my way out. Bugger them and there smart card points, I will no longer support those Noddy Nazis and will rather go shopping at the store where the slogan reads that it is “ better and better”.
On signing the “confession” I added a notation written in my hand on both copies that read “ SIGNED UNDER DURESS”.
Had this happened 6 years ago I would have gone tactical and being typing this from a holding cell at the police station while awaiting my court appearance. There is no doubt in my troubled mind that I would have broken the handle off the trolley and shoved it up “Moron number 2`s” arse and then yanked the security gate off its hinges while I went Atomic all over the place. However those wild man of Borneo days are gone and in its place is a broken spirited man simply trying to figure out an existence for myself. I felt the fury rise in my system but the overriding meekness that has overtaken my persona has won and I desist and do not go ape.
If the old adage is correct that the meek shall inherit the earth, you can be assured that the first order of the day will to be expel “morons number 1,2 &3” from the planet and banish them to Uranus as that is where all anus` go! I may have taken a beating in the confidence department that has been accumulating for the past 5 years and has been eroding away my confidence and mojo like the enamel on the front tooth of a hobo over the years but at least I am not a toffee apple like the three wing nuts I had to deal with on the 13th of November 2012, the day after my birthday, thanks for ruining the first day of my 43rd year you miserable clowns!
Now I had to go back and explain to the people I was delivering the magazines for and tell them in excruciating detail of my embarrassment of the whole stupid ordeal and just how unnecessary it all was and just how foolish this whole thing has left me feeling, they must think I am possibly the oddest weirdo they have ever met. I left the office saying that with my luck I would probably get struck by lightning while walking home. As I hit the pavement the weather turned fast and it started raining! Just frigging perfect! I was however given a lift back to where I am living and then the sky opened up full bore. The house was struck by a bolt of lightning and a spark flew from the distribution box in the kitchen, I bull schtein you not! When I got up to the kitchen my friend was standing their busy with supper and I retorted mockingly looking up “you missed” and was immediately told not to joke as she was standing close to me. An audible low rumble then emanated from the sky as thunder rolled in the distance which brought the words” you see”. I promise you that all this is true and is just too odd to make up. My Mojo is in remission and I miss the old me who lived 6 years ago before I broke out into full blown meekness and bad fortune, I need a relapse of crazy and real quick like! Mike Da Silva