Saturday, 1 November 2008

Strange days indeed

My mother's Great Dane Horatio will be marching in a rhododendron festival parade wearing a special outfit, that was not quite the information I was expecting to hear when I phoned my mother this morning.

I don't think the idea of an extremely large dog marching in a flower parade directly lead to the chicken nuggets but I am quite sure its a contributing factor. I left the house in search of food but I turned right at the front gate instead of left and found myself completely surrounded by schoolboys outside the shops. An older boy was stationed at the zebra crossing, he saw me approaching and put out his arm to stop a gaggle of younger boys to let me pass. The younger boys stopped in their tracks without a second thought and waited for me to round the corner and cross the road.

I had forgotten about schools and schoolboys wearing ties carrying identical school bags. They frolicked like polite kittens on either side of the road except for the older boys who were gangly and lovely like lopsided homemade cakes. I stopped to think of them all arriving in houses, throwing down their bags and running up hallways to find kitchens and parents and cold drinks on a hot afternoon. I longed momentarily for a clockwork house run by clockwork parents, a dinner time and designated places at the table. A place where everybody helps set the table and clean up afterwards, while the clockwork parents sit down with cups of tea and watch the news. I wanted a house where the salt and pepper comes out of a cupboard before dinner and goes away again afterwards. A house with a special container for used tealeaves that are wrapped in newspaper and put in the compost at the end of every day and a kitchen where the lights go off at the same time every night but I don't this explains the chicken nuggets either.

I walked laps around the shop with a red basket hanging on my left elbow searching for food I might like to eat. I stopped in front of the freezers because they were cold and inadvertently spied a box of frozen chicken nuggets. I do not remember ever buying such things before. I opened the freezer and put the box in my basket and walked to the front of the shop to pay for them, they were six dollars and forty nine cents.

I ate the chicken nuggets in front of the television whilst watching Ice Road Truckers. I was not aware of a show called Ice Road Truckers until today. The basic premise seems to be that men in terrible hats drive big trucks across ice. During the ad break I added tomato sauce to the chicken nuggets. The nuggets were greasy, crunchy on the outside and rubbery on the inside and tasted of bread crumbs, cardboard and oven. I'm not sure what came over me, like I said I can't entirely blame the idea of a large dog marching in a flower parade or a gaggle of coltish skittering school boys but I am quite sure they must have had something to do with it.

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