Dulltown, UK: Today’s dictionary words are: tripudium, tripos, triskele, triphone, tritical, and bombazine. Please have these words looked up and placed in suitable sentences ready for Professor Mouldie first thing after breakfast tomorrow morning. The professor will conduct the lesson speaking via a glove puppet made from an old grey woollen sock – you must keep your eyes on the sock, and you must not look at the professor’s lips.
The bus had just crawled into its bay in the Interchange. It was straight from the bus park and empty of passengers. It opened its doors and the queue of about a dozen people started to shuffle forward towards it. I was about to join on the end of the queue when a chap suddenly appeared from the right and looked as if he was about to join the queue too.
He was a broad and tall chap in, I would guess, his late twenties or early thirties.
He sported a bushy ginger beard, round glasses, a cream baseball cap, on backwards of course (A week or two ago I saw an amusing video clip of a chap wearing a backwards baseball cap in a crowd watching a tennis match; he sat there with his hand up to his forehead to keep the sun out of his eyes. The caption below said something to the effect – Turn your hat around, you dumb-ass!), he was also wearing a black t-shirt with a bright spiky emblem on it, lemon coloured training shoes and scruffy grey jogging pants.
He stopped, as if in the queue, but also not in the queue, about two feet to the right of it. I have seen people do this before. Are they being deliberately dithery? This social behaviour is a bit odd isn’t it? You don’t know if they are in the queue or not. In my experience it is usually men who do is rather than women; is this a macho thing? Perhaps for some reason they don’t have their car that day and are obliged to travel on public transport with us, the non-car-owning riff-raff; they would perhaps feel embarrassed standing there waiting in line with the ordinary folk. Queuing for something is quite a leveller isn’t it dear reader?
Anyway, people began boarding the bus and we all edged forward a little – he was still hovering slightly in front of, and to the right of me though, I didn’t know whether he would move towards the bus with the rest of us or not.
Suddenly there was action. He looked all around for a moment, and then in a flash, he dashed off whence he came. I thought that he had decided to choose a different bus, but no, he had spotted a discarded sweet that someone had left on a nearby seat a few feet away. He snatched it up and returned to his position (sort of) in the queue.
By now more people had joined the line behind me, which made our chap’s position in the scheme of things look even more odd. He carefully unwrapped the rescued sweet, put it in his mouth, formed the cellophane wrapper into a rough sphere and in a nonchalant manner flicked it into the air with a forefinger.
On boarding the bus I spotted him sitting on the upper deck in the centre of a double seat with his crossed legs sticking out into the aisle; he was still masticating and sucking his toffee open-mouthed as he rapidly thumbed away at his phone. I went and sat a few seats behind him so that I could continue to observe.
Gosh, and sometime I worry that I might be a bit odd…