Does anyone else feel that the second half of February has a weird, dream-like feeling to it?
On Monday we had a Valentine's 'do' at the bingo hall. The hall was festooned with pink and silver heart-shaped helium balloons, sugar paper cupids and pink and silver stars. We gave all of the customers glasses of champagne and Valentine's cupcakes. C___ (a very sweet young man from Cashline) was dressed as our mascot, Rebecca, which necessitated a huge foam outfit with a fake bulbous head, a long pink dress covered in bingo numbers, enormous high-heeled shoes and a handbag (he was the only one petite enough to fit inside the costume). At the beginning of the Main Session, we were all forced to do the Club Dance (it's a little similar to the Macarena, only performed to our special Bingo-themed song), us Team Members around mainstage, with the managers onstage and Rebecca in the middle.
The customers applauded enthusiastically at the end.
Team Leader S____ had acquired real red chrysanthemum buttonholes for all of us with sprays of baby's breath, which we pinned to our tops. Unfortunately, mine brought me out in what can only be described as Buttonhole Boob Rash, and I was forced to remove it expediently.
Halfway through the night I realised that the red top I'd acquired for the occasion revealed my nipples obscenely, which for some reason had become startlingly erect, possibly in response to the chrysanthemum-induced Buttonhole Boob Rash. I ducked into Booksales, where A___ provided me with two post-it notes to stick over my nipples inside my bra to flatten them down. It seemed to work.
We went out on the Town afterwards, and I wore my Ellen Degeneres/Beetlejuice ensemble - black jeans, a purple man's shirt, black and white sneakers and a pinstripe jacket. P___ and me were getting cash out of a hole in the wall when a drunk vague acquaintance staggered up and engaged us in conversation. After a minute or so, he suddenly turned to me, his eyes widening in apparent horror and he exclaimed,
'Oh, my God! You're a woman!'
I looked down at myself and exclaimed,
'Oh, my God! So I am!'
Then I punched him in the face. Well. I didn't. But I could have. As it was he staggered away into the night and I murmured 'W*nker* softly under my breath. That showed him.
Soon after, in a club, I encountered a girl from my old Theatre Studies class. After we'd exchanged 'Oh, my God - it's you! How the hell are you's, she took my face in my hands and said passionately, 'Look at you! You're beautiful! You're so beautiful!' I became very confused about the current level of my self-esteem and my projected gender identity and decided after some deliberation that I must in fact look like a beautiful man, which wasn't altogether horrible and might indeed increase my chances of pulling Stephen Fry if I ever met him at a party.
In the next club, I stole P____'s beanie hat and decided to wear it for a while, when N____ demanded that I accompany her outside. Once out there she insisted that she was going to wander off to find her cousin and then fell over spectacularly in the middle of the road. I lifted her back to her feet and suggested that this was perhaps not prudent, but she was most insistent, and I ended up in a taxi with her, trawling the streets for her cousin. I might've been more relaxed, but I was very aware that I'd stolen P____'s hat and had left my Beetlejuice jacket back in the club. When we found the cousin, N____ spent at least twenty minutes screaming her name out of the taxi window, her cousin resolutely ignoring her. The taxi driver was remarkably long-suffering, but I'm certain he wouldn't have been half as patient if N____ hadn't happened to be a little person and his sense of mis-guided Political Correctness so powerful.
In the end, we made it back to the club, sans cousin, and I returned the hat and retrieved my jacket.
Do you know, the lovely little thing about all of this was that it all distracted me marvellously from the fact that I am ALONE - DESPERATELY, DESPERATELY ALONE AND DESPAIRING OF EVER FINDING MY ONE TRUE LOVE on Valentine's Day. MY LIFE IS BARREN - THERE IS NOTHING BUT SAGEBRUSH ON THE ARID HORIZON OF MY ROMANTIC LANDSCAPE. I SLEEP IN AN EMPTY BED... I CRY IN AN EMPTY ROOM... I SHOWER IN AN EMPTY BATHROOM... I EAT STAG VEGETARIAN CHILLI IN AN EMPTY KITCHEN... MY LIFE IS EMPTY, AND SO IS MY JAR OF VEGEMITE. AND I REALLY FANCY SOME OF THAT ON TOAST RIGHT NOW.
But hey - whaddaya gonna do?