Falling in Love with a Girl at a Tesco’s

Here’s some brand new fiction of mine. First draft, seeing-where-it-takes-me type stuff. It’s inspired by Robert Rankin, who is the most consistently brilliant, hilarious writer I know. His books include such gems as “Raiders of the Lost Car Park” and “The Brentford Chainstore Massacre.” It’s not to everyone’s taste, but there’s only two other writers (Tom Sharpe and Bill Bryson) who have the ability to make me laugh out loud, and Rankin does it so much more frequently.

I see his books as meaningless fun. They won’t change anyone’s life, but you’ll never not enjoy the experience of reading one. That’s the kind of outlook I like to keep with my writing.

Enjoy. Comments are always welcome.

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Chirpy Wilberforce fell in love with the girl who bought, among other things, a bag of apples, a copy of The Daily Telegraph, an electric toothbrush, and a 5-pack of metal coat-hangers from his checkout at the Tesco superstore in Bar Hill, just outside Cambridge. Her name was Esmerelda Surname-Pending.

For those who are curious, the falling in love process happened thusly.

First, Chirpy served an elderly lady who was buying all manner of boring, mundane items: a loaf of bread, a carton of orange juice, three tins of beans and a packet of extra-large condoms. Chirpy was very bored, swiping things past the bleeper while resting his head in his hand like the smart kid who finishes his exam half an hour before everyone else. It was getting late and it was almost the end of his shift.

Second, Esmerelda Surname-Pending emptied her basket on the belt. She didn’t lift objects out one at a time like a normal person, instead she tipped the basket upside down and the apples and things fell all asundry.

Third, Chirpy looked at Esmerelda. He looked and he smiled because what he saw pleased him a great deal. This girl now standing before him was so well-endowed he thought she might topple over, standing there like she was walking into a strong south-westerly. Chirpy felt guilty noticing this feature of her body first of all, but it was hard not to notice such a thing. He fidgeted on his chair. He also noticed she was tall. Chirpy was a bad judge of height and length, telling people his sex thing was “about nine inches,” when in fact it was just shy of six, but he was sure this girl was at least six foot.

Fourth, he noticed her face. Normally she would have blue eyes the colour of a still lake in a forest clearing on a midsummer’s day (trust me on this), but today she was wearing contact lenses so the blue was more the colour of a doctor’s waiting room. Her hair was red, of a shade that most girls try once and say, ‘It’s like, way too red, I look like a freak,’ when in fact it’s indistinguishable from brown. She also had freckles on her cheeks and a fresh spot on the side of her nose.

Chirpy thought she was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen.

But that’s not when he fell in love.

Fifth, Esmerelda Surname-Pending did not speak a word to Chirpy as he bleeped her items through. It was this fact that Chirpy would later think upon and mark down as the reason for all the trouble she would cause him. Her silence made her dark and mysterious and Chirpy liked dark and mysterious things. In fact, you might say Chirpy loved dark and mysterious things.

Esmerelda, without looking at Chirpy, and having paid in cash, swept her items into a Bag for Life and headed for the door. Chirpy watched her go, wondering if he’d ever see her again.

As he served the next customers in line, Chirpy began to wonder other things. He wanted to know what Esmerelda’s skin felt like. He wanted to know what her hand would feel like on his arm. He wanted to know what her mouth tasted like. He wanted to know what it felt like to be crushed between her –

That’s quite enough of that.

“Excuse me young man, I’d like to buy these melons.”

Startled out of his musings, Chirpy turned to the lady next in line. She was putting down two watermelons onto the belt. He sighed.

“These really are very large melons,” she said.

“Yes, yes, large melons. Very funny,” Chirpy said as he handed over her change.

The melon madam looked at Chirpy quizzically. “I’m sorry?”

“Never mind. Enjoy your melons.” And Chirpy went back to thinking about Esmerelda, including her extra-sized melons. 

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