Tuesday, 24 June 2008


Once upon a time in the good ol' days of greasy spoon caff's, you'd walk in to the lino-covered,(in parts) floor, sit at a plastic covered table with the squeezy tubes of ketchup,etc, and order a coffee. The highly trained catering assistant would then activate the boiling water machine, commonly known as 'the kettle'. As the wonders of science boiled the cold tap water up, the multitasking catering assistant would wipe his nose on a multi coloured(stained) apron, then wipe his hands on his singlet, all this while making your bacon sausage n' egg butty. Then your cracked,sort of clean mug of tea or coffee would arrive with 5 heaped tee-spoons of sugar. And it was wonderful! But that was then, and this is now, but between then n' now, was last Saturday.
Me, the Lovely Lynne n' the 'Little 'un' went shopping in Warrington .The Lovely Lynne had an instinctive uncontrollable urge to go to Debenhams. I said you go i'll get a coffee in a 'Starf***'s just opposite the big 'D'. The very pleasant young lady asked me what kind of coffee i wanted.." oh just a plain coffee,thanks." Then i was hit with a whole menu of coffee's. It was a coffee version of Monty Python's 'cheese sketch. Eventually when we'd sorted out what i wanted, she handed a note to some other girls by this massive heap of equipment. It looked like they'd gotten it from a German navy' u-boat' surplus store. There was pipes , valves n' dials, levers, handles and a variety of high pressure equipment. The sound effects of gurgling, hissing, rattling ,clanging and loud bubbling and popping. I wasn't sure if i was getting a coffee made or were we on a 'crash dive', in mid- Atlantic before torpedo'ing a convoy. I'd watched that wonderful film, 'Das Boot' recently, so i couldn't get the images out of my mind. As i stood there for about 20 minutes as they fired tubes 3 and 4 ,then adjusted the bow planes,blew ballast and we re- surfaced, i thought i felt the floor incline ,then finally i got my coffee. It looked n' tasted like U-boat diesel oil.
I went to a table to sit with my diesel oil,and watch the world go by whilst waiting for my 'beloved'. Time passed, and carried on passing, slower n' slower. And gravity pressed my face harder n' harder into the palms of my hands forcing my cheeks up above my ears. Time and gravity were exacting their toll on me, they are the cosmic 'big boys', if you like and Einsteins theories of Relativity are about them. But at the other end of the scale, the sub atomic world, even the basics of energy itself is dealt with by some weird shit indeed, which goes by the name of Quantum physics. Which, basically nobody understands. They know how to use it, as say in a microwave oven, but no body understands why the Quantum cookbook works. One strange facet is that the actual observing of certain 'events' in the Quantum domain will affect the 'outcome or behaviour of particles, waves n' other event ,outcomes, in an infinite number of alternative timelines and universes. I knew, not because i'm an expert in Quantum Physics, but, i know my missus. I knew that if i sat and waited, i'd be there for another hour while she fingered every damn thing hanging from a hanger in Debenhams. But, if i got up to get a coffee, as soon as i'd got it, she'd turn up..That would be the Quantum outcome, she'd come out.
So, i went in,ordered a U-boat battery acid Latte. We went into another crash dive. As i waited for my coffee, listening out for depth charges. It'd gone quiet,, we were on 'Silent running', obviously to avoid sonar But it was actually because my coffee was ready. I went out to sit down and there she was...Maybe there is something in this Quantum physics. But in another universe, i could still be sitting there waiting on my 742'nd cup of coffee, as unbeknownst to me ,the Lovely Lynne has run off with the Debenham coat hanger delivery man.

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