I was a little alarmed when I heard loud buzzing noises in my office this afternoon. With my new medication the voices in my head seem to have mostly disappeared but for a moment I thought that the buzzing noise might have replaced them.
It sounded like a host of angry bees.
Whilst I was struggling to remember if I had taken my pills when I awoke this morning one of the English with whom I work – a Northerner – wandered over to my desk and said:
“Ay Oop Hep are you going to the Formula One?”
“Ay Oop Hammer” I replied.
“Ah - that is all that noise. I thought my madness might have returned”
‘Ay Oop’ is a traditional Northerner greeting and a Northerner is an English person who - unsurprisingly - comes from the northern part of England. The Hammer was born and bred in Lancashire and he is a dour lad with a big heart. I am Hep.
The Formula One is of course car racing.
“I will not be going to the Formula One Hammer as neither fast cars nor fast women appeal to me”
“Ay oop” the Hammer replied.
The Northerners also use ‘Ay oop’ as a phrase of acknowledgement.
I like it.
Soon a small gaggle of the English arrived at my desk – seemingly attracted by the Hammer. He is an endearing and magnetic character.
There was much discussion about the Formula One Grand Prix racing and chatting about who was going and who was not - and then some mindless debate as to who would win the race. My yawning did not seem to dissuade nor dispel the gathering.
Ernie - a small whining Scottish colleague of mine arrived to join in the conversation and I asked him whether he had yet come out of the closet.
The term ‘coming out’ or ‘coming out of the closet’ arose in the 1950’s and related to a person publically declaring their homosexuality. It was intended to be a form of liberation from what was perceived to be a life of shame and secrecy and denial.
It is my opinion that a person’s sexuality is no one’s business but their own and it in no way determines who they are. I have many gay friends – male and female – and they are exceptionally good people.
They would not be my friends otherwise.
The reason I have a crack at the whining Scottish man that is Ernie is that I have heard him on many occasions say detrimental things about gay people. His homophobia and his Scottishness annoys me.
“Ay oop Ernie” said the Hammer.
“Ah didn’t know that you were gay”
“Ahm noot fookin gay” Ernie responded.
“Of course you are Ernie” I interjected.
“There is no shame in your homosexuality”
“There is no shame at all Ernie” one of the other English who was hovering around my desk added.
There were a few other grunts of affirmation from the small crowd that had now assembled.
“Ahm noot fookin gay” Ernie repeated.
Then he turned bright red and walked away.
“He is” I informed the English who were surrounding my desk.
Their presence then distracted and annoyed me and I stood up from my desk and I went downstairs to have a cigarette.
I work at the Marina Bay Financial Centre in Singapore - which is very close to the Grand Prix circuit. Today is one of the practice sessions for the very fast cars and when I walked out of the building the buzzing noise of the vehicles was much louder than it was indoors.
There were a lot of tourists around and as I walked towards the designated smoking area - weaving my way around them and at the same time checking some messages that I had received on my Blackberry - I accidently stepped on something. I felt something squelchy underfoot. I stopped in my tracks to see what I had trodden on and when I lifted my foot to scrape it off my shoe - I was quite shocked to see that it was Bernie Ecclestone.
Bernie Ecclestone is the eighty three year old President and Chief Executive of the Formula One Management Group. He is British and he is the dude as far as Grand Prix Formula One racing is concerned.
The Forbes business magazine estimates Bernie’s net wealth as being a tad under four billion American dollars. That is a lot of moola. Bernie is officially reported as being five feet and three inches tall – but it has been suggested that this was measured in platform shoes and his actual height is only five feet and one inch.
He is only a little fella – but size does not maketh a man – nor indeed does their sexual preference.
Heed that Ernie.
Bernie recently married the 35 year old and six feet one inch tall Brazilian model Fabiana Flosi. She is his third wife. The more than twelve inches difference in height and the forty-six year age differential are of little consequence to the Brazilian and the Brit - nor it seems is the four billion dollars in net worth.
Love is often blind to such things.
Here is a picture of the happy couple. They look like they were meant to be together.
I apologized to Bernie for stepping on him and he told me not to worry about it. He told me that it happens to him all the time.
I asked him if he wanted to join me for a cigarette and he informed me that he had quit the habit as it was stunting his growth.
I muttered some form of affirmation to this and then I wished him luck with the Singapore Grand Prix. I then walked off to have my cigarette. As a rule I don’t like to speak to the English for very long.
They displease me.
I am at home now and am a fair distance from the Formula One racetrack and I don’t think that the cars are practicing anymore. Disturbingly I can still hear a buzzing noise in my head and there is a little voice beginning to whisper as well.
Where the fuck did I put my pills ........