Love Trains and Tarts
I paused at the door of the Beer Shop. Something seemed amiss. No, scratch that. Something was not merely amiss.
Something was terribly terribly wrong.
For a start. Inside looked to be packed with people.
Which was odd.
Added to that, the doors were vibrating slightly to the bass of the music that could be heard, thumping away on the inside.
I furrowed my brow at the tune. Some shitty old fashioned number about a Love Train.
What the very fuck was going on?
I girded my loins and pushed my way in.
It was hot and crowded inside. I could barely squeeze through the crowd of bearded men standing around, resting glasses of beer on their big jutting out bellies.
Ey op! Ere ee is! The star attraction!
The Bear-Man yelled over the din as I broke through into a clearing in the middle of the bearded man-woods.
I looked around fearfully. The Star Attraction!?
Holy shit. Had they been waiting for me? Was this finally it?!?
Was I to be passed around all of these big-bellied beardos as some kind of meat trinket??
My eyes widened and I snorted deeply like a bull spying the Vet with the big hands again.
What are you talking about? What's going on?
I looked distastefully around me.
We are having a tasting!
The Bear-Man passed me a small glass of something frothy and brown.
Go on. Try that.
I noticed several of the bearded belly men watching me. No doubt the glass I had been handed was full of drugs and I was mere minutes away from being forced into a tutu and thumbed like a dog's ear.
I set my mouth in a grim line.
No way Jose, not whilst I still had...
Did you get the missus summat nice for Valentine's then?
Asked the Bear-Man innocently.
All thoughts of being muck-pumped by brutes flew out of my mind.
My mouth had gone awfully dry.
I hadn't. Not even a card!? Fuck. Here I was dicking about in a beer shop whilst my little chicken pie was at home without even a card!?
She would not be happy.
You like tarts? I got this Manchester Tart stout... Hey, you look a bit pale?
The Bear-Man looked concerned.
Tarty beer? Brilliant. I'll take it. Must dash!
I paid and pushed my way rudely out of the shop.
I had bigger things to fear than Bear Men and their penises. I had a wife with no Valentine's.