#1
some of that prose stuff.

True Story.
---
My friend Trevor is quite pathetic. I’ve known him for four years, and during that time, most of the interactions I’ve had with him were instigated on my part, mainly due to pity. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a lovely guy. Friendly, warm, generous, but he just has one of those ways about him, you know?
A way that makes you want to put your arm around him and gently urge him to reassess his whole life and outward personality.
I originally worked with him for a brief time. He was hapless. He would shuffle around the office, murmuring and grinning and getting screamed at by our manager. I stuck up for him during one particularly brutal tongue lashing about coffee mugs being left on desks over night, and from then on he used to make a point of nodding and mumbling an “alright?” every time he saw me, and when I went for a cigarette or a coffee, he would just sort of stare at me in a friendly way and stand close enough to me to make me start panicking about appearing rude, thus forcing me into starting a conversation. After a little while I fell into the trap of actually getting to know him and I found out that he’s not unlikeable per-se, just not so terribly likeable either. Just another benign weirdo, but one who I made the mistake of actually getting to know on an actual human level, only to find out that beneath that lopsided and unsettling smile, and behind the empty little crab-like eyes, and underneath the various layers of stench, he is a real person who, while lovely on the inside, is probably painfully aware of just how bizarre he seems to the almost everyone in the entire world.


I know what its like to be an outsider, and so does he. Although, my fringe membership of society is more self imposed, whereas his seems to be a fatalistic pre programmed, basic instinct.
The average person would overlook a guy like Trevor. Society has almost completely written him off.
He is never mean. He’s always smiling an odd, thin wide stretched, but nonetheless always good natured smile.
He’s not really creepy, he just looks that way, and acts that way. And is very difficult to really talk to about anything other than the WWF circa 1993, or rubbish films, or why Tom Baker was by far the best Dr.
He’s definitely on one end of some kind of spectrum.
Usually simply acknowledging that someone was as socially defective as he is, or even as I am, would make me want to be very far away from them, but he clearly yearns to be normal. I realised very early on that I was the closest thing to him that has any small semblance of footing on the social ladder, and so somewhere along the line I must’ve decided that it was up to me to at least try to fix him for the world.

---------------------------

Trev was married for 14 years. He met her when he was 19 at a friend’s party and she apparently had some sort drunken pity sex with him. He got the first girl he slept with pregnant, the first time he ever had sex and married her and that was that. That was the beginning of the end for Trevor Stollings.
Two children, and many thousands of awkward, silent, loveless days later, she left him, and not even for anyone in particular.


He’s launched a few unsuccessful campaigns at relighting the fires of love with her, that I know of.
Last year, as her birthday approached, he bought two tickets to a particularly horrible concert, in a feeble, misguided attempt at wooing her back into his flabby white arms. Naturally It didn’t work and she was having none of it so he turned to me, and I had to bloody go with him.
When he phoned me up and said, “I have these tickets see, and I’ve already paid for them and everything, and there are two of them, and it’s a sort of concert, that should probably be good anyway, and I can’t find a single person who seems to want to go with me, and I know you like music, I thought you might be interested”

I humoured him, like a friend would and said

“Oh yeah? Well, who is it”

And when he said “Well the man at the box office said it was the best Michael Buble - slash – George Michael tribute act around. It’s called George Michael Buble”

I just didn’t have the heart to tell him that I would rather intentionally damage my own eyes than go to such a dreadful sounding show. It was a totally accurate description of how I was feeling at the time, but I knew he was only going to go anyway, and the thought of him sitting alone in the audience amongst all those painfully square couples and homosexuals, grinning widely despite his crushing feelings of loneliness was too awful to bear.

SO I went. And while it was humiliating and actually physically nauseating for me, it was probably quite nice for him, as aside from work he really doesn’t do very much at all. It was at least one night where he actually got up off his tear stained sofa and got out of his pleasant but quiet and empty little flat, and had the chance to breath in some air that wasn’t filled with the stench of toner or loneliness.

I did think of not taking his calls at one point, but there is a very good chance that one day I’ll see his name flash up on my phone, and groan and ignore it, and that’ll be me missing my chance to talk him into taking his head out of his oven, and he’ll die and then I’ll have that on my conscience. The things you have to do for friends.


It was early one evening when I got one of his calls. He blurted out

“Fin? Its Trev
I think I’m ready to start dating again…

I wasn’t expecting it.

I try to help out my friends, but my first thought was an instinctive
Why me? Why did he have to come to ME for help with his ****ing problems.
I composed myself and tried in vain to weasel out of it by saying

“I’m not much of a dater myself. I’m more of a “unsatisfying clumsy groping in the bushes with negligibly attractive drunk women kind of guy.”

“Well, I was thinking we could go to Stackers, you know. Get out. On the pull.”

“Trev mate. Those women aren’t exactly what you would call “date-material”. Most of them I would barely even call human.”

He responded with what was possibly one of the three saddest sentences I had ever heard uttered by another human being:

“That’s fine. I’m not…
I’m not picky. I just want someone to hold me.”

I sighed. I’m noticing that I sigh a lot when I’m on the phone with my friends. Maybe It’s just me. Maybe it’s a brain tumour.

We don’t often discuss his love-life, or his lack of happiness, but the thought of it is always looming. Like an elephant trying to read over your shoulder.
If it comes up, I like to skirt around the issue, so I can avoid eventually having to wade in to rescue him from drowning in a river of tears and rancid old hormones.
He is usually glib enough for me to be able to just offer up some very general boilerplate, average-at-best advice, and then just change the subject and move on but this time though, I could really hear the desperation in his voice. There had to be some way that I could do something to help...

I briefly contemplated booking him a cab and pointing it towards some prostitutes, but that could just be a gateway to bad news.
If he knew how easy it was to secure the services of a ***** then it wouldn’t take long for him to transition from mild mannered loser, to sexual deviant, to penniless syphilitic corpse. And that’s the best case scenario.
Worst case, he falls in love with one of them, moves her in with him and then becomes the unwilling eunuch maitre d in his own little Russian mafia franchised brothel. He’ll have to make tea and provide bathrobes to all the many guys that’ll come traipsing through the place at all hours to shag his missus. He doesn’t have the cash or even the joie de vivre to rescue a girl from a life like that. It will just suck him in and consume him too.

No, I thought I had better try and show him my methods, teach a man to fish and all that, or in this case arm him with fruity but powerfully alcoholic drinks and show him how to man the harpoons. I hope he isn’t put off by the fact that inevitably, whalers reek of whales.

Will you help me?


I didn’t want to. But regardless, I said

“Course mate. Just…Just iron whatever shirt you are wearing, and we’ll see what we can do.

**********
--------------------i'm definitely the alphaest male here--------------------
#2
I rang the bell. Trev opened the door and appeared in a choking cloud of Lynx deodorant and several different aftershaves. He was beaming with an uncharacteristically wide smile, shimmying and pointing his fingers with an equally uncharacteristic

“Wahay! Are you ready to party?”

His hair was completely varnished with gel. He was wearing chinos, loafers that at a glance looked like well worn moccasins, and one of the many shirts from his modest wardrobe that I have singled out and specifically told him on a number of occasions, both gently and aggressively, that he should burn.
I’m hardly a fashionista but he seems to be drawn to shirts that should never have even been designed in the first place, let alone chosen to wear by a fully grown man who should have some bloody taste. It’s one of a selection of oversized black collared shirts that has an embroidered silver winged-skull emblem stitched on to the back. He looked like an early mid life crisis at a cheap golf club. A 40 year old in a particularly lame 14 year olds clothing.

He would be hard pressed to be the oldest creepiest guy in a place like Stackers, but I didn’t want to take any chances. I wanted to answer his question, but there were more pressing matters that needed addressing.

“God no. Trev mate, I’m sorry but I have to put my foot down here. No skulls.”


He looked a little bit crestfallen, but if I wanted to make sure that this evening went well I had to be upfront about everything that might turn this wonky search for a woman into a failure. Spare the rod; spoil the man-child. The last thing Trevor needs is more spoiling. He’s already virtually ruined as it is.
He had clearly made an effort. It just happened to be a piss-poor one.


“lets go and find you some nice human clothes, eh?”

His pointing party fingers drooped a little, along with his smile and eyelids and I ushered him back inside.

“Oh. But I thought this shirt would be ok?”

I made an ambiguous “hmm” noise because I didn’t want to flat out say that he couldn’t have been more wrong, and looked ridiculous. I just fabricated a smile, guided him towards his clothes and quietly started doing some damage-control.
I leafed through his wardrobe for a little while. Until I found an only slightly crumpled, lime green Ben Sherman that looked like it had been exiled to his wardrobe in 1996, for being too hideous. The whole ordeal made me tired. I felt overwhelmed and lethargic so I stopped looking and told him it would have to do. We hadn’t even left his flat and I was already feeling put upon and stressed out by all the work I was having to do. Maybe this is an unfair comparison, but I felt as though I was trying to polish a turd. A friendly and jovial turd, but a turd nonetheless.
Either way, I think I was a little angry at myself for getting roped into this, so I just threw the shirt at him, gave him a thumbs up and told him to go and chisel some of the shellac out of his hair while I called us a cab.

************

It was a beautiful, idyllic summers evening. Birds were singing their final numbers for the day, twilight was fading into dusk, and through the cab window I could see the massive glowing sun slowly creeping beyond the horizon and the city was starting to hum and buzz, charging up for the weekend.

Then we pulled into the car park of an old industrial estate and everything turned grey. We drove on past rows of identical run down old warehouses, until we reached one slightly less run down old warehouse that had a gigantic, gaudy neon STACKERS sign on the roof. I started to panic. I knew what was coming.

The sub throb of the music began swelling up as soon as we got out of the cab, getting louder with every step closer.

Trev paid cab fee, and we started moving. Men on a mission. We were sucked into one of the swells of incoming partyanimals that were being pulled instinctively and magnetically towards their boozy Mecca.
Trev was lagging behind, struggling to stand firm against the rush of people. I didn’t slow down for him. I was going to be seeing more than enough of him tonight anyway. The cab ride alone almost filled my Trev quotient for the day. I thought we could just get in, get a drink and if need be, talk then.

Night clubs are pretty awful places at the best of times, but they were made infinitely worse by the smoking ban that was introduced a few years ago. The sweet comforting haze of tobacco smoke was replaced by a close and sticky fog of body odour and stale booze. And everyone has become all the more violent because of it. Rather than walk the 100 yards from the bar, out to the smoking area to calm down in the rain under a warm lightbulb with a nice relaxing cigarette, people will just blow off their pent up cocaine and Stella rage by glassing someone who doesn’t really deserve it. That’s much healthier for society than second hand smoke.


If I didn’t have to be here, for Trevor, then I certainly wouldn’t.


As soon as we stepped inside, the corners of my mouth curled down and my nose crinkled up.
I looked around and these feelings of disgust were compounded with feelings of remorse and shame. So far, so Stackers.
The PA system was buzzing from too much bass. It was like the speakers were expressing disapproval of the horrible music they were being forced to pump out.
Orange women were grinding up against muscular pink polo shirts. There were some sneaky and paranoid looking children being sick every corner.

Naturally, when entering anywhere that sells alcohol, we headed straight for the bar. I was dreading the inevitable questions Trev was probably itching to fire at me about game plans and tactics.
I knew why we were both there, to find Trev a woman, I just didn’t really want to talk about it. It was just a nice drink, in a loud smelly environment with a couple of mates. Hopefully one of those mates will get lucky and pull, then we can fleetingly high five about it later. I didn’t want to be reminded too often of the sole reason that I was lured from the comfort of my home that evening. I didn’t want to be told to keep my eyes on the prize when the prize is nothing more than one of my most physically unappealing friends grunting and writhing about on the sweaty body of someone who’s probably going to be just as repulsive.
I should have known that this was going to require some major focus on my part, besides I don’t even have any tactics or wisdom to impart anyway. Pulling at a place like this seems to be pot luck. Spin the wheel. Take a chance.

Even so, Trevor probably can’t do it on his own. He’s not a charming man. He has awful taste in music and films, he dresses, frankly like an idiot. Yes he may be dressed vaguely like a person today, but his wardrobe is crammed full of high waisted jackup nylon trackies and boring t shirts. Always white socks. Always. Sometimes with sandals, but to his credit he has slowed that down considerably since the intervention. He took it into consideration but he still must genuinely think it looks good. Who knows what’s really going on in that mind of his. We left it up to him after. He looked crushed, but resigned to it eventually. He wants to change, God bless him. He is just unbearable to be around.

------------------------------------


Theres more. Somewhere. Someday.
--------------------i'm definitely the alphaest male here--------------------
#3
Please tell me you made up the part about the George Michael and Michael Buble tribute act? George Michael Buble? No! Bad dog! No!

Please?

Good story.
Smile when you say that.
#6
Well, I made it to the second post, but I didn't make it much further.

It's not that it wasn't written well, it's not that it wasn't entertaining, hell, I only opened this thread because I recognized your user name from many years ago. It's just that I couldn't bare to burden myself anymore than I already had with the knowledge of such a pathetic individual.

That only made me feel sorry for you, considering how I could barely put up with reading about him, much less be his pseudo confidant.

I just couldn't take in anymore of the feeling I got from reading this. In a sense, that's a good thing. This piece is so capable of overwhelming a person with feelings, albeit negative feelings, that he couldn't even continue reading it for the sake of relieving the stresses on his brain caused by said feelings.

Feeling.

I said that word a lot in the last paragraph.

Bye.
#7
Thanks for reading. The rest will be up sometime this week. Probably.


And thanks bpc, You just made my day. And here was me thinking the protagonist was just being a dick. Those feelings you kept banging on about totally justify (vindicate even,) this whole piece for me.

Cheers
--------------------i'm definitely the alphaest male here--------------------
#9
Theres a part 2 up here if anyones interested.
--------------------i'm definitely the alphaest male here--------------------
Last edited by FunkasPuck at Oct 18, 2011,