Tuesday, October 20

Tube Announcement


Sitting on an underground train I finish ruffling through the free paper and focus on the driver’s announcement.

“-I want you to know I only meant to scare her,” the calm voice said. “It was never supposed to kill her,”

My ears picked up. How long has he been talking?

“I thought burying her would be hardest but keeping it a secret this long has destroyed me.”

I look on at the dozen other passengers all transfixed on their portable entertainment. The confessional washing over them.

He continues: "I’m sure you’re disgusted by my tale and I do not expect forgiveness. I accepted my place in hell long ago.”

The speakers go silent. Should I be worried? Scared? Ring the police? I feel bad that what I really want is the first part of the story. The gossip.

Our train slows and the speakers crackle back to life.

His final words: “This station is Mill Hill East. All change here.”

The carriage empties as my fellow passengers shuffle onto the platform - unaware of what happened. I guess I’m no different.

Saturday, October 10

The Jolly Codger

Captian Blackbeard was an excellent recruiter.

“Tax breaks aside,” he’d say, “there’s three perks to being a pirate. You’ll travel the world, work with animals and enjoy a great pension scheme!”

Blackbeard never had a reputation for nurturing talent and failed to pass on his map drawing skills.

Fifty years on I realise I should have pushed him for training. My X looked fine but what way to hold the map? How’d I forget to write north on the thing?

“East!” I confidently proclaimed to the trusting crew.

A one in four chance? Maybe. I’ve made it through tougher odds.