Friday, 3 June 2011

Scene 13: Rochester's Missionary Position (Part 2)

It is Christmas night.  Rochester and Miss Underscore have arranged to meet at 8 o'clock in Miss Underscore's local pub, The Victorian Cockroach (E-Coli free since 2008).  The rogue has promised to text Miss Underscore when he arrives.  This is an uncommon glimpse of gallantry from the Geordie gigolo, who knows Miss Underscore's terror at waiting in a busy pub on her own.  However, the flaky fanny rat is late,  very late, HOURS late.  So late that Miss Underscore is 3 sheets to the wind on cheap gin and cooking sherry by the time his text arrives. Still, she courageously untangles herself from her White Company cashmere throw (it's Matalan acrylic really) and heads out into the starlit and frosty night to meet her beloved. 

The Victorian Cockroach (Crimewatch Pub of the Year, 2007) is bedecked in dusty Christmas tat. The decorations could be best summarised as Poundshop meets 1960s Czechoslovakian embassy.  Its clientele is an eclectic mix of be-hoodied thugs and twockers,  tweedy university professors, domino playing pensioners and giggly, rag-doll-limbed teenage girls.  But, for all its threadbare crudity, the place feels like a cosy and welcoming respite from modern bars, with their over-styled, chilly, industrial minimalism.  Miss U peers uneasily around. Rochester is no where to be seen.  She begins to panic.  Suddenly a familiar face appears from the gloom of the den-like snug.  

Rochester: (Pissed) Over here pet!  I like this place, you know.  I feel right at home.  (He, rather unsteadily, staggers over and cuddles Miss Underscore).  Hey, what do you think of the jumper flower?  (He points to his dark red Merino jumper). Present from me ma.  We all got one.  Each brother a different colour.  Senor Boldon's was black.  Obviously. He's the cunting beatnik of Burger King.

Skanky drunken tattooed dolehound: (brandishing snooker cue) Hey mate, are you gonna finish this game like?

Rochester:  Petal, you sit there (he manhandles Miss Underscore onto a bench).  I'll get you a drink.  Do you mind if I finish this game?  (whispers) I'm fucking raking it in here.  I've beaten 4 of those twats already (he nods towards a swaggering confusion of tracksuit clad Liam Gallagher wannabees).  I'm going to be cunting loaded if this carries on.

Miss U: (sighing) Go on.  I suppose it's the only income you've had this month.  How much have you made?

Rochester: £2 pet. £2.50 if I win this one.  I may even get you a packet of Frazzles if you play your cards right.  (Rochester skulks to the bar and returns with a gin and tonic).  They only have Ukrainian gin.  No lime or cucumber pet. They did offer to put a pork scratching in it.  Lovely to see you flower. (he hugs Miss Underscore). You are now going to watch and learn as I fucking humiliate Mr JJB Sports over there.  

Miss U: I never realised you were a pool haddock.

Rochester:  Shark pet.  Pool shark.

Miss Underscore sips her gin and sends a text message to best friend Madam Noir. 

'Two hours late and now he has abandoned me to play pool with the cast of Jeremy Kyle.'

Rochester: (Proudly brandishing 50p)  See.  You OK petal?  Loved that text you sent me earlier.  Could have done without Senor Boldon seeing your name come up on my phone like.  Ginger cunt.  (He puts his arms around her and strokes he hair).

Miss U: You were rather late.

Rochester: Aye.  I did get the 17 messages you sent asking where I was. Me ma gave me a lift over.  She stayed to have a couple of drinks and a chat. 

Miss U:  Oh dear God, does she know about me?  Does she know about me and your brother?

Rochester:  (smiling) Aye.  I told her ALL about it.

Miss U:  Oh no!  What did she say?

Rochester: She said I was (adopts stern, Jean Brodie-esque Scottish accent) 'a disgraceful lothario who never learns'.  She was laughing when she said it though. 

Miss U: (mortified) What must she think of me?  She must imagine I'm working my way through her sons like some sort of Alabama trailer trash. 

Rochester: (distracted) Petal, where's your Aunty Margaret tonight?

Miss U: Christmas rock & roll night at the colliery club I think, why?

Rochester: (He nods towards an embittered, grim faced old woman nursing a sherry.  She is glaring furiously at Rochester for no apparent reason).  She's been watching at me like that for hours. 

Miss U:  Another woman under your fanny magnet spell, obviously.


Rochester:  Aye. It's not easy. Being me. I'm deeply serious.

(Miss U and Rochester kiss)

Rochester: I did enjoy kissing you earlier.  It wasn't till I got home that I realised Boo had taken advantage of the situation and pissed on my cords.

Miss U leans in to Rochester and rests her hand on his knee. The gentle intimacy of the moment is ruined when they are approached by a rather masculine woman with a buzz cut. 

Female Dolehound in Football Shirt: Here mate.  Do you wanna another game?

Rochester:  Do you mind petal?  I could get £3 here.  And it's a bird . . (he squints at the woman as she arranges the pool table)  I think it's a bird.  Aye, it is.  This is going to be like shooting fish in a barrel.   Sit tight. 

Miss Underscore settles back into her seat, sips her gin and watches the game.  It is not going to plan.  Rochester appears to have met his match.

Rochester:  She fucking beat me pet. Frazzles are out of the question now I'm afraid.

Miss U:  Obviously lezza.

Rochester: (frowning) I don't think so.

Miss U: (scoffing) You're kidding me.  She looks like Walter Matthau's less attractive brother.  She's wearing a football shirt, she's drinking a pint.  She's got a tattoo of Martina Navratilova's arse on her arm. You're saying she is NOT a lesbian?

Rochester: Na, I don't think so.  You've not got the hang of this yet pet.  Leave it to the experts eh? You're only embarrassing yourself.

Miss U: (shaking her head) You are obsessed.

Rochester: I don't deny it.  It could be worse.  I know a fella my age who has turned his attic into a scale Scaletrix model of a Grand Prix circuit.  Complete with papier mache hills and spectator stands.  Jesus.  I emailed mismatch.com and asked them to put lezza-spotting on their drop down list of hobbies and interests.  I mean, what red blooded man admits to antiquing or fucking paper crafts? They never got back to me.

Miss U: Can we talk about your mismatch.com advert?  I feel rather conned.

Rochester: Are you serious? OK.

Miss U: You claimed to be 6 foot tall.

Rochester: Aye . . . I am. . . . almost.  5' 11''.  I just rounded the numbers.  Rounding is an accepted mathematical principal, you know.

Miss U:  I suppose that same principal would allow me to claim to be a size 10.  How many children do you have?

Rochester:  (sighing)  You know pet.  I have 3 bairns.

Miss U: How many did you claim on your profile?

Rochester: (groaning) 2. But, I resented the options provided.  You could either have 0 kids, 1 kid, 2 kids or 3+ kids.  3 PLUS KIDS!  It made me sound like I'm fucking David Koresh and I live in a cunting compound.   I do not have 3 PLUS kids.  I have 3 kids. 

Miss U:  And your job, you claimed to be. . .

Rochester: A self employed business consultant.

Miss U:  And you are . . .

Rochester: Aye, OK,  to all intents and purposes I am unemployed.  To be fair flower, there has been a global downturn in the lesbian flipchart market.  

Miss U:  And your income was declared as being?

Rochester: Moderate.

Miss U:  And it is?

Rochester: Non existent. 

Miss U: And in your profile you claimed to be divorced.

Rochester: (shaking his head) You are a fucking provocateur you know that.  I am not divorced.  I am still married.  Legally anyway. 

Miss U: So, if you'll allow me to summarise, you are a married, vertically challenged, unemployed, down-at-heel Mormon patriarch.

Rochester:  Aye. BUT, you could do a lot worse pet.  I mean, you have done a lot worse, case in point, Senor Boldon.  That's why me and him don't speak about you, we both know it, I'm the better catch. You know it too, right?

Miss U: (Opens mouth to protest)

Rochester: Shhhh. No, no need to say anything pet.  Out of respect to my brother, let's just move on. He can't help being who he is. 

Miss U and Rochester, getting progressively more tipsy and progressively more tactile and intimate.  They are sitting closely, limbs entangled. 

Rochester:  You smell lovely pet.  

Miss U: What do you think about us?  About me?

Rochester: I think you're smart, articulate, gentle, funny . . . pretty, sexy, sensitive.  I can live with the Mackem thing.  I like that you appreciate that men and women are different, and that those differences are a good thing. You know. . . all that stuff. I don't know how all of this will pan out, it is pretty much all I have thought about these last few months. I like you a lot.  I think you're lovely. That's about it really.  

Miss U:  Let's go get some tea and Christmas cake.  

Rochester:  Aye, come on pet, that would be good.  I'm dying to see your house.  Knowing your hankering for the 1950s I'm imagining lemon yellow formica kitchen and a Doris Day heart shaped bed.

Late the next morning.  Miss Underscore and Rochester are in bed.  Rochester is snoring like an adenoidal gruffalo.  Boo is lying by the side of the bed, his head resting sorrowfully on his paws. He keeps looking up resentfully at the slumbering fanny rat who is sprawled across his mistress's bed.  Miss Underscore sits up suddenly and looks at the clock. 

Miss U:  Fucking hell, it's 11 o'clock.

Rochester: (groaning) Awww fuck,  no petal, lie down.  (he attempts to canoodle Miss U back into bed)

Miss U: No, where's Kipper? (Rochester frowns) You know, that decrepit, 100 year old dalmatian you met last night? (Rochester shakes his head) My other dog.  He wakes me up at 6 every morning. Without fail.  Oh God, Rochester, I think he must have died in the night!  I've been expecting it. (Miss U lies back down).

Rochester: Cunting hell, I CAN NOT be dealing with a dead dog this morning. (He wraps himself around Miss U)  Mind you, if you're going to check on him I wouldn't mind a cup of tea.  And maybe some Marmite on toast flower?

Miss U: (Settling back into the warmth of the bed). Your snoring is quite remarkable. 

Rochester: (Proudly) Thank you. 

Miss U: It wasn't really a compliment.

Rochester:  It should be.  Were we attacked by bears or wolves in the night?  No.  See?  That's why men snore. 

Miss U: Ah, so you see yourself as some sort of cave man protector? 

Rochester: Just nature.  I think I'll just stay here till the match starts.  I've got tickets.  That's OK isn't it?

Miss U: Hmmmm.  You're on my side of the bed again.

Rochester: We talked about this last night.  I think you'll find that this is a better solution all round.

Miss U:  You were very sly you know. 

Rochester: How so?

Miss U: Well, every time I claimed my rightful side of the bed, you would instigate a terribly tender cuddle, or distract me in some other debauched way.  Then, before I realised what had happened, you had cunningly maneuvered me back to the wrong side of the bed.  

Rochester: (sniggering) Aye. I was surprised how many times you fell for it like.

Miss U: (wiping smudged mascara from her eyes) Oh God, I'd better go and put some make up on or something.

Rochester:  Nah.  Stay where you are pet. (He hugs her closer) I like a bit of warpaint, but really, there is no need for a bird of mine to keep jumping up and reapplying coats in between orgasms. 

Miss U: (simultaneously horrified and charmed by the oaf's blatant boorishness) Holy fuck. Have you heard yourself?  

Rochester: Why, get up if you like, but put the kettle on flower.  Check on the dog.  I'm not really up to digging a hole in the garden this morning, but I will if I have to. I can't say fairer than that.  Come back to bed though eh?  

Miss Underscore drags herself from the bed and heads out of the room.  A greatly relieved Boo scampering at her heels.  Rochester sprawls across the bed, yawns and closes his eyes.

Miss U:  (calling from downstairs) YAY! It's OK, Kipper's still alive.  Almost.

Rochester starts snoring. 


(By the way, here is a picture of Boo. )

17 comments:

  1. Ah, I remember it so well (not the bedroom bit, of course - against my religion). The man is o-b-s-e-s-s-e-d with lesbians, Miss Underscore. He is drawn to us like a moth to a flame.......

    ReplyDelete
  2. I know Noir. One day I expect to see him on Mastermind, with lesbianism as his specialist subject.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I feel like I should be paying to read this. It feels wrong not even to have to shell out the 50p reservation fee for an inter-library loan, nevermind £26.50 for a cinema ticket and one of those marvellous snack deals whereby one can purchase a small bottle of water and some stale popcorn for only £9.99.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think I've met a Rochester, and he reminded me of a character in a book: Doris Lessing's Golden Notebook? George Hounslow?

    I wrote about him.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you FFD! Am sure this would be a 'Straight to DVD' production mind. You could pick it up for 99p at the local BP garage, and stock up on Galaxy Bubbles whilst you're there.

    Ellie - Loved your description of 'your' Rochester. I am now going straight to Amazon to purchase the Golden Notebook.

    ReplyDelete
  6. He's just a bit character in Lessing's book (description of George below) ... but I thoroughly enjoyed The Golden Notebook. It put my brain into overdrive. I couldn't stop thinking, thinking, thinking about things.

    George's approach to women was clumsy, over-humble, and he might even stammer. (But his stammer always sounded as if he were doing it on purpose.) Meanwhile his deep-set brown eyes would be fixed on the women with an almost bullying intentness. And yet his manner would remain humble, apologetic. Women got flustered or angry, or laughed nervously. He was a sensualist of course. I mean, a real sensualist, not a man who played the role of one, as so many do, for one reason or another. He was a man who really, very much, needed women. {...} When George looked at a woman he was imagining her as she would be when he had fucked her into insensibility. And he was afraid it would show in his eyes. I did not understand this then, I did not understand why I got confused when he looked at me. But I've met a few men like him since, all with the same clumsy impatient humility, and with the same hidden arrogant power.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Don't laugh, but when I was at Uni (as a mature student) we had a lovely lezie lady (LLL) in our mature student's common room. She had been married before to a thuggish alcoholic brute, but was now happily ensconced with her lady partner, and had been for 2 years. One of my mates decided that she was ripe for conversion.
    Actually what he said was "I bet that lassie really needs a good long bit of c*ck"
    He actually said this as the LLL was complaining about a sore neck caused by her companion having an orgasm-induced thigh spasm.
    I leave the details to your enflamed and fevered imaginations.
    Blow me (bad choice of phrase that) but he succeeded. The two of them came in the next week and they just couldn't keep their eyes and hands of each other. It was quite sickening actually.
    The three of them stayed together for the next year, each happy with the arrangements.
    The only one badly affected by the whole business was the LLL's ex-husband, who had been using her "conversion" to lesbianism as an excuse for her leaving him, as opposed to being a smelly drunken violent shit.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ellie - I love that quote. I am DEFINITELY reading that book. George does sound like Rochester to a tee.

    TSB: A twisted neck due to an orgasm-induced thigh spasm? I never realised Lesbian was such a dangerous activity. Is that why they wear sensible shoes, do you think? All those tired, aching muscles, weary from headboard shaking shagging?

    ReplyDelete
  9. "Is that why they wear sensible shoes, do you think? "

    Yep.

    Doc Martens and Dungarees Deny Dangerous Deviant Diddling

    ReplyDelete
  10. I always wear a bit of a heel and always wear make-up - black eyes (not the wife-beater in dirty vest variety) are my raison d'être. Does that fit with the lesbian cliche? And not a dungaree in sight ;

    P.S - only EVER Chanel eye liner, of course.

    Noir xx

    ReplyDelete
  11. You do NOT always wear a bit of a heel Noir! You have a penchant for Timberlands and Converse, as I recall! It is true that I have never SEEN you in dungarees, but how do I know you don't slip an extra baggy pair on for those romantic Venetian moments?????

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hmm, think you'll find whenever we go 'scone-ing' (note to readers, that is not a sexual practice - although if the scone is extra cheesey and has ham in, I'll admit it comes close) that I always wear my boots which have a 2-inch heel - YOU are the queen of the ballet pump. What would Freud make of that?!!!! X

    ReplyDelete
  13. "YOU are the queen of the ballet pump. What would Freud make of that?!!!! "
    The old Kraut Mutter-Lieber would probably mutter something about rumpy -pumpy

    ReplyDelete
  14. Great pub scene, vividly conveying how scary it is to walk into a pub as a lone woman. Especially in the evening. How annoying that he kept jumping up to finish games instead of staring into your eyes in the proper manner. Good thing he's played by Mr. Sewell, which gives him extra latitude.

    Re lesbians: A great friend of mine is a hasbian, now happily married to a man. She contends that all lesbians are really heteros who have been put off men by bad experiences. I find this argument intensely annoying, for some reason. Surely it is not the case? Would welcome the opinion of Madam Noir.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Well, Nellig....I have always 'known' - so to speak. Went down the usual route of boy-meets-girl-heartbreak-break up shenanigans...but always, always knew. I will always remember the day that I told Miss Underscore my 'secret'. But I understand that this very scene may feature in another blog entry - so I shall have to keep you in suspense...!! Evil, aren't I??
    Oh, and I'm not one of these sorts that bangs on about 'wimmins' rights' and all of that caper. And women aren't much better than men, you know. I could tell thee a tale or too, couldn't I, Underscore?!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Oh - hello Nellig.

    Rochester enjoying these scenes far too much. Not bothered AT ALL that he is depicted as a rather insensitive and flaky reprobate. Reveling in it. The only thing he has objected to is appearing too Mackem (Sunderland).

    'I DO NOT SAY LIKE AT THE END OF MY SENTENCES!'

    Noir - what about all those breathless infatuations with MALE swaggering young rockers and swarthy, South American car valeters?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Well, Underscore...I think that you will agree that my taste in men was always rather 'androgynous', wouldn't you say? And please....you'll have everyone thinking that I am the Mackem version of Pamela Des Barres, intent on deflowering every young bit of male totty that comes within sniffing distance.

    ReplyDelete