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Don`t Jump - I`ll miss celebrity squares

by ged 

Posted: 15 August 2003
Word Count: 1731
Summary: A would be suicide is stopped with a dash of honesty from a fed up copper

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I’m P.C. Mike Edwards Cheshire Police, Runcorn.Home of ICI, a Beezer Homes League

football team, a disproportionate number of single mothers and most importantly for our pur

pose the fabulous Runcorn Suspension bridge. A feat of Victorian engineering and magnet for

every depressed housewife, failed businessman and disgraced clergyman this side of the

M53.Built when we knew how to engineer quality structures. I’ve had three call outs already

this month and this was my fourth and it was April. I mean you usually get a run on around

christmas time, you know when people get to dwell on things and that Billy Smarts Circus is

enough to drive anyone over the edge if you ask me.I hadn’t been so busy since they brought

out the song from Mash declaring Suicide is Painless. It could be I suppose but nobody has

ever lived to tell. I mean its no good asking the poor sod when they’re splattered across the

mud flats of the Dee is it? Attempted suicide isn’t painless I can vouch for that. I’ve seen too

many poor broken sods carried into ambulances. I’d just popped a findus Cod in Parsley

sauce into a pan of boiling water when the call came. It was a shame cos I like a nice bit of

processed fish moulded untidily into a rough square shape. Reminds me of happier times. So

it was off with the gas and on with the coat.When I got there they had already closed the

bridge and a couple of hundred stranded drivers sat glum faced. Some were out of their cars

and peered up to the top of the bridge in the vain hope of communicating some sort of get

down and don’t be stupid message. Some sat in sheep like tolerance and mused about divorce,

deadlines and drop dead gorgeous Australian soap stars. I was met by wingnut from Traffic. I

swear you could get Sky on those lugs of his, the slight wind had given his ears a comedy tip

of red, he told me the jumper was a male, they nearly always were, you see us men tend to

bottle things up and let it get on top of us, women in my experience weep at the drop of a hat,

they tend to let it all out once and a while, that’s why you always see them coming out of toilets dabbing their eyes with hankies.Some don’t even bother going to the toilets. I had a

young WPC with me who’d cry at the slightest of things. All it took was for a suspect to

be playing The Commodores and she be end up looking like Alice Cooper chopping

onions. Anyway it was a bloke up top and he was threatening to jump. ‘Wingnut’ had got

halfway up and his vertigo had kicked in. Which wasn’t surprising a good gust behind

those lugs and he’d have ended up in St Helens. Like Mary Poppins with thicker wrists

gliding on the wind. I was used to heights it didn’t bother me, I’d been up in all

weathers, I preferred summer obviously I’d once spent a glorious afternoon with a failed

businessman spotting red Cortinas and laughing about Basil Brush.I was quite

disappointed when he wanted to come down. I climbed onto the steel walkway and

proceeded to make my way 300ft up to the top. As I got nearer the thick ginger hair and

the round shoulders looked familiar. It couldn’t be. It was. Ginner is that you I asked.

Ginner was a mate all through school and for a couple of years after until he left to

become a priest with The Salesians Of John Bosco. Ginner looked at me. “Edwards?” He

squinted. “My god man.” I sighed, as I took a seat next to him on the cold steel. “Fancy

meeting you here”.He had obviously fulfiled his ambition as he was in the regulation

black outfit and his dog collar was stuffed untidily into his top pocket. Ginner stood up in

a I’m going to leap now sort of stance. Sit down you rum bugger. He took another step.

Listen rusty nut sit down or I’ll give you a slap. I slipped into fourth form bully mode. It

worked. Ginner sat down.Let me guess I said, you’ve been a little liberal with the church

plate collection. Ginner shook his head and spoke a solemn “I wish”. I’d tried this route

first after his scam with the school tuck shop money in year two. Nothing was ever

proven but I was privy to the Kwik Save bag full of copper he kept buried underneath

the potted ivy in his back garden. A little trouble with er.. Choir boys? Ginner

sneared at me. What Do you take me for?” I’d only suggested this because I

vaguely remember he backed his Geography text book with a picture of Liberace

and refused one day at the bus stop to round on the boy from St Martins private

school that spoke like Danny La Rue. Women trouble I suggested, it was usually

one of four things this being the third and only remaining possibility the fourth

being failed business and as far as I could see any business with God as the

Managing Director couldn’t really fail.Ginner nodded. It began to take shape. Priest

falls for pretty member of congregation.Home-made scones long chats, light

summer dresses and flashes of olive inner thighs and white knickers. “Was she

married?” I asked. Ginner shook his head. “No, but I am.” What, I thought and I

never even got an invite to the reception. “Married to God,” Ginner continued.I

thought it was nuns who were married to God as the catholic church didn’t approve

of homosexual marriages, but I decided to concede on this point all things

considered.What’s her name? I asked. Ginner stood up steady on steady on I urged,

Don’t worry I’m just getting you a photograph.He passed me a picture of what

looked like a summer camp. Two kids with that gawky thirteen year old look - head

full of teeth and gangly stood each side of a dowdy woman in a green Peter Storm

cajoul, muddy leggings and hiking boots. Very nice I said, well what else could I

say, you’re three foot away from ending it all for a woman that looked like no fun

whatsoever. My initial thoughts of summer dresses and olive thighs with white

knickers turned to polyester trousers, orange peel legs and a VPL more prominent

than a cheap toupee. Give me a good reason then. Ginner stood up. Good enough not to jump right now.I’ll miss Celebrity Squares. Well it was the first thing that

came into my head. Ginner sat down. “What you like it too?”

“Yes,” I thought. I’d done it, the first rule of thumb when trying to get through

to a ‘jumper’ was to establish a common item of interest and the gameshow

where minor celebrities get a chance to be funny and revive their flagging

careers with a couple of witty remarks seemed to do the trick.Who do you think

was the best, I asked. Bernie Clifton he replied without hesitation. I used to think

he was no more than a second rate holiday camp entertainer stuck forever with

that bloody ostrich, but the answers to those questions were so funny, he was a

real talent. I agreed, not because I thought the said Mr Clifton was the best, oh

no I felt that that honour should go to Ted Robbins, famous for being the

unfunny brother of Kate Robbins who was famous for being ..er well dunno but

I think it’s something to do with The Beatles, she bought a hamster off George

Harrisons sister or something insignificant like that. We mused about it for a

while then Ginner stood up again he took a deep breath....”From Norwich... it’s

the quiz of the week! I stood up too and we both began to dance in a sort of

twist like fashion. Like a pair of embarrassing wedding uncles a twist but not a

twist just a two uncles trying to dance. After we’d forgotten the rest of the tune

we both sat back down. What’s he like to work for then, this God fella? I asked.

Ginner smiled. Alright, he replied no fear of the salary cheque ever bouncing

and if you want a word with the top man there’s no need to make an

appointment you just drop to you r knees and open your mouth. A bit like

Monica Lewinsky eh ? I joked. Ginner looked at me like he did when we were

in the fourth form together and I had systematically bored a hole through the

wall of the girls changing room with a drill bit purloined from metalwork.

“Look ginner I grinned... Beaver! it was that look, the look of disappointment.

You’ve always been the same haven’t you Edwards he said. Always the same.

A beast, Steady on Ginner, I protested, I’m hardly a beast! Really, his eyes

looked dark and black. Beast he repeated. Then turned to me in a most priest

like manner. Tell me about the books Edwards. The mucky books the filth -ridden

books filled to the frothy brim with black eyed ghoulish teenage girls I don’t know

what was worse the way Ginner seemed to be looking into my soul or the fact that

I had been sleeping on a tilt on such a pile of the very same teenage porn. Ginner

was right and he knew it. Suddenly it felt cold. Your life is shit Edwards. Should a

priest say shit I asked.I say it like it is Edwards. Shit. Like the shit bit of processed

Cod you’ve left on the stove. This was getting spooky. Ginner was right my life

was shit, living alone was shit, being a policeman with everyone hating you apart

from people over fifty was shit, wanking off to ghoulish pictures of teenage girls

in bitty Marks and Spencers knickers was shit. My relationship with my family was

shit. My colleagues thought I was a sad shit. Even my cat thought I was shit.

The wind swung me back facing upwards. I saw Ginner smirking, I

the wind parted his hair slightly at the forehead, It might have been just an illusion,

but were they horns?

The End.

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Comments by other Members

Nell at 14:42 on 15 August 2003  Report this post
Hi Ged,

This was very funny - I could almost hear the policeman's voice, and I liked the back and forth dialogue. I can see it as a monologue with just the right actor as the policeman - can't think who at the moment. The punctuation needs a little attention - reading the piece aloud helps - and there are a few typos, but these should be easy to find. I thought the policeman was going to be the one to jump towards the end, in spite of reading the summary, I'm glad he didn't - your ending was right.

Best, Nell.

bluesky3d at 15:01 on 15 August 2003  Report this post
yes very funny..
'It's a Wonderful Life' springs to mind.
Great Stuff
Andrew :o)

Lisa at 15:15 on 31 August 2003  Report this post
Marvellous piece of writing. I like the natural, rolling coversational style.


olebut at 15:28 on 31 August 2003  Report this post
agree with my learned and veneral predeccesors i did find the layout a little hard to cope with but still funny with just the right degree of pathos.


Lisa at 15:32 on 31 August 2003  Report this post
Good point, actually. Perhaps a little formatting and punctuation might be good, but hey - it's a fabulously written piece anyway!


ShayBoston at 20:22 on 12 April 2004  Report this post
Laugh out loud funny. Very witty. I know Runcorn Bridge well, so felt I was there.


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