Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pop Musik 

The Friday morning meeting – basically a post-mortem for that week’s dead Service Level Agreements – was drawing to a close and everybody’s mind was turning to the lady at the gate with the dreamy soft white baps whose Tandoori Parsnips have become quite the talking point recently, when Stella, my eighties style yuppie witch of a leader said, “So before we finish, Tim has got a very exciting announcement to make.”

“Have I?” I asked.
“Yes. Remember what you told me last night? About your thing?”
“Oh Jesus.”

Everybody stopped tidying their papers and stared at me. An entire career of trying to be invisible felled with one swift blow. Even Ivan the Terribly Thorough, who is normally in and out faster than you can say “Oh look, my bin’s been emptied,” stopped in his tracks and leaned inquisitively against the doorframe.

“Tim’s got a CD coming out and is going to be on Britain’s Got Talent,” Stella beamed. “Isn’t that brilliant?”
There was a minor commotion, a low level drawing of breath. Somebody rubbed their eyes like you would if you were in a cartoon and you’d just seen a pig in a bikini flying around handing out fifty pound notes.
“Tim is going to be the Preston Susan Boyle!” Stella babbled. “I can’t wait!”

“That’s only half right,” I said. “Yes, there’s going to be a CD. But I’m not going on the telly. It’s not really a Britain’s Got Talent kind of thing.”
“How do you know that?” said Stella. “You said you’ve never even watched it. Why do you always have to put yourself down?”
“I just don’t think, well…”
“You don’t think anybody’s going to actually like your CD,” said Mike.
“Exactly,” I said. “Thank you Mike. It’s going to be available on iTunes and Amazon and stuff, and I sort of think it’s fairly, you know, almost quite good, but I don’t think Simon Wots-his-name will come beating a path to my door.”
“Cowell,” said Tabs, her arms loaded with photocopying.
“There’s no need to be rude,” said Stella.

Later on, after the going home bell had rung and everyone had cleared off, Stella asked when this CD of mine was coming out.
“Not for a few weeks yet,” I said. “It’s at the manufacturers now. Then it needs distributing and all that stuff.”
“Sounds like you need a manager. My friend Becky could do it if she’s not found a new job by then.”
“No luck yet then?” I said.
“Not yet. She’ll be fine though. I know she will. People will always need bankers.”

Outside my window, Rex the Security Guard was putting his tomatoes away after having them out all day for hardening off. I made a mental note to do the same. Geraldine the Company X goat nibbled devotedly on his turn ups. A couple of help desk staff slinked sleepily out of the potting shed in a post-coital haze to make way for his grow bags. Away in the distance, the hopeful city of Preston shimmered in the Spring sunshine. All looked golden, all looked good.

“You will let me know when I can buy one of these CDs, won’t you Tim?” said Stella. “Because I know what you’re like. You’ll keep it to yourself and the moment will pass. I want to help you.”
“Thank you,” I said. “That’s very sweet. Letting you know when and how you can buy my CD is the least I can do for you after all this time,” but when I looked up she was already up and out of the building, halfway across the car park in fact, skipping joyfully like a child, to the gate where her good and true friend Becky was waiting with her engine running and her top off.

I put away my Hob Nobs and made my way to the station.

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