Stefan looked at a picture of Ed Milliband and Ed Balls queing to buy a Cornish Pasty and forced his mind to yield to his instruction that it was an image of two men at ease in their natural environment. Despite being of a socio-economic group that traditionally consumed healthy quantities of said snack (fifth to 75th percentile), Stefan didn’t really like them. In principle though he did like them. He remembers very well the last one he had. He felt obliged to buy it from an empty bakery on holiday, which he’d spent too much time in to leave without buying something. The anger at that wasteful purchase mingled with a general sense of having had an unfortunate life and built to a shaking red faced rage.
The sight of two competent and fortunate men was then all that was required to send him on his way to a breakdown. He had decided to obey the governments suggestion to buy fuel despite realising the inevitable consequences because he wanted to have the wasted time and inconvenience as a weapon against the winner of England’s 2011 best person competition. Is was the ultimate act of self defeating passive aggression since the resulting arsenal could only be used within the confines of his own head. This is because Stefan can not talk in sentences. He prefers to utter opposites in a sort of free association heavily relying on the word posh and garbled references to his own upbringing.
That’s when I enter the Hungry Horse pub opposite the Travelodge I’m staying in as part of my national tour marketing software for solar panel manufacturers. The barman sees his chance and (genuinely) runs away. Stefan now has me in his eyes and we both know that the only way I could turn and leave would be to openly admit that I’m terryfied by what I am about to recieve, and also run.
I sit down next to him and am surprised by the instantaneous start of his barage to the point of almost (genuinely) falling off my stool. Despite aggreeing with the man it takes a huge effort on my part to appear to agree. I leave the pub full of burger and impresseed by the man in two ways. Firstly, by the scope of his discourse, which casually takes in the eastward shift of global power, a general discussion of inequality throughout human history, and science’s usurping of large swathes of meta-physics. Secondly, I’m impressed by his ability to accurately represent the bizzare and insane corners of his brain instead of taking the usual approach of distorting them into dishonest rational arguments.
D’y’ know what I mean tho’?