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La Nuit

Story by Big M

It was mid-morning, and Foodge stood at the bar, absent-mindedly polishing a pint glass. O’Hoo, in his brand new bib ‘n’ brace overalls, wandered over and leant against the bar. ‘You’re in a funny mood, Foodge.’

‘Why do you say that?’ Foodge slowly turned his gaze to O’Hoo.

‘You’ve been grinding two desiccated flies into the bottom of that glass for over half an hour.’

Foodge quickly emptied the dry fly guts into the bin, and placed the glass in the washing rack then poured a couple of canoes. ‘I am experiencing a deep sense of ennui, or a sense of deep ennui.’ As he clinked glasses with O’Hoo.

‘On wee?’

‘Yes, ennui, I read it on Mark’s blog.’

‘Oh, ‘ennui’, yes, he mentioned it the other day.’ O’Hoo knocked back half a pint in one gulp. ‘I thought it would be guilt, or perhaps, remorse.’

‘Why so?’ Foodge was now polishing another pint glass with the same filthy rag.

‘Well, you did slough old Merv’s Mum onto Big M.’

‘Slough is too strong a word’ Foodge didn’t like strong sounding words this early in the day.

‘Emmjay reckoned she got stuck in a hallway.’ O’Hoo motioned for a second glass canoe.

‘Yes, rather unfortunate.’

‘Bloody unfortunate for the Ms.’ O’Hoo stopped to wipe some perspiration from his glistening forehead.

‘Yes, jolly unfortunate’ Foodge didn’t like swearing this early, either.

‘How did they get her out? I heard they were gonna get a crane to pull her through the ceiling.’

‘They let nature take its course.’ Foodge suddenly realised that his rag was contaminated with dead flies, so flicked it into the small laundry hamper under the bar.

‘What, they let her die?’

‘No, she shrank down a bit from not being able to eat or drink, then they poured some cooking oil around her, and out she popped.’

‘So where is she now? O’Hoo was relieved.

‘The Ms popped her on the Country Link train to Barraba, or Boggabri, or some place with wide open spaces.’ Foodge pushed another canoe across the ancient bar.

‘So, which is it?

‘Which is what?’

‘Ennui, guilt or remorse.’

‘On wee?’