George Baker was in the kitchen making offal sandwiches ( his wife’s favourite tea time snack) when he heard a stream of obscenities coming from the living room. He decided to investigate.
“Looking for something darling?”
Mildred, his wife of thirty six years was frantically emptying the contents of her handbag.
“Of course I’m looking for something you moron. Why else would I be doing this?”
“Just wondered if I could help, that’s all dear.”
“You haven’t been able to help me in ANY department since 1986. So just shut the fuck up and sit down.”
He did as he was told. His eyes still glued to the amount of stuff being taken from the handbag. It looked like a scene from Mary Poppins.
He wasn’t surprised to see nail varnish, hair curlers, ketamine and a brass door knocker, but he actually gasped when she took out the chain saw. She looked at him and sneered.
“Nothing darling. Just admiring your packing skills.”
“Listen Numb nuts, you never know when a chain saw will come in handy. Last week I was round Jane’s having a glass of wine and she showed me her garden. She mentioned that a massive bush was overhanging her front opening. Five minutes later it wasn’t a problem.”
He wasn’t quite sure what she meant by that. But years of experience had told him not to question anything that Mildred said.
“No, no honey, you’re right. As always.
“Yes and don’t you EVER forget it!”
They sat there in silence. Something that he wasn’t accustomed to. He started to count down from twenty. He knew it wouldn’t take long. Nineteen, eighteen, seventeen, sixteen, fifte….
“You still sitting there you useless lump of lard. Go and get my sandwich and make me a cup of tea.”
“Of course darling. Sorry darling.”
He made his way to the kitchen and switched on the kettle. He thought back to better times when Mildred was a young care-free girl. She had a strange hobby back then. She liked to race greyhounds. Sometimes she would even beat them. He remembered one day at Hackney. She was in trap two and the favourite was in trap six. The doors opened and she was away like the wind. There was no stopping her that day. She won by a good six lengths. Happy days.
Now at the age of sixty two her racing days were over. She still kept herself fit and trim of course by street jumping but the speed had gone from her legs for any thoughts of returning to the greyhound track. He wondered if that was the reason she was always so angry. Today was quiet by comparison. He hadn’t been stabbed yet. Something Mildred took great pleasure in. Only a small wound of course. Normally at the top of his leg. It was just her way of showing affection. He was still deep in thought when Mildred entered the kitchen. Penknife in hand.
“Where the hell is my tea, shit – for- brains?”
“Sorry dear, miles away. Just coming now.”
He felt the familiar stinging sensation in his thigh.
“That should wake you up, you good for nothing fool.”
“Thank you dear. Much appreciated. Just what I needed.”
“Right, bring the tea into the living room. I think we should talk.”
The words struck fear into George. The last time Mildred had uttered those words she told him she wanted to breed tigers in the garden shed. They tried it, but only the once. Mildred had bad scratches on her back and the tiger died from suffocation.
He sat down and waited for whatever scheme was brewing inside her head.
“Okay, listen you idle useless half wit. I’ve decided that we need to spice things up a bit in this poor excuse that we call a marriage. We’re going to try swinging.”
Georges chin almost hit the floor. Where on earth would he get a swing from at this time of day. Argos would be closed by now….