September 25, 2010


I glare at the balding little man with a red nose sitting opposite. It is bad enough to be stuck in a stationary train without having to listen to this incessant sniffing.


I’ve had enough.

“Excuse me,” I say. “I had to listen to your wretched sniffing for the last hour. Can’t you just blow your nose?”

Other people in the carriage turn and gawp. He stares at me, unrepentant, and slowly wipes his nose on his sleeve.

I’ve made my point. I sit back satisfied. But then I feel an irrepressible tickle growing within my nose.



The Train

February 13, 2010

The train rattles across the grey countryside in the sour light of dawn. Inside the carriage ashen faced passengers sit sullen; dressed in suits, ties and thick winter coats. Through the window soggy fields and deserted industrial estates flash by unremarked.

Each shuddering second takes them ever closer to The City.

Some passengers pretend to be occupied by a newspaper or scratching at a laptop. Others simply stare pensively into the middle distance. In truth everybody is listening.

As they approach their destination the voice of The City grows still louder.

“I’m going to eat you. Om nom nom nom.”

[First posted Thu Feb 04, 2010]

Traffic Jam

February 13, 2010

Without rhyme or reason the interminable traffic jam snakes for miles through the countryside. I sit, going nowhere, as the van in front spews exhaust fumes. Suddenly brake lights flicker and the queue begins to move. We creep forward before coming, irrevocably, to a halt.

I gaze out of the window at the tatty woodland beside the road. From behind a tree I see a flash of grubby polyester, and a bearded face peers back at me. The conchie wears a badger skin waistcoat with a hubcap hat to keep the rain off.

With a wink he beckons to me.

[First posted Sat Nov 21, 2009]