Stop it. Stop it. The documenting in time and emotional-value order was torment and of no use when he was trying to diminish the feelings. The truth was, he had to do something to stop the feelings, because it had all built up so much that he had started to avoid Andy.

And Andy had noticed.

He came round on Wednesday night and asked what the matter was. Graham denied knowing what he was talking about.

‘It’s because of my hair, isn’t it.’

‘No, mate, no.’

‘Are you sure?’

‘There’s nothing the matter mate, I’ve just been busy.’

Andy glanced sceptically at the array of tins, jars and wine bottles arranged on the side which Graham had been washing out and putting in the recycling bin.

‘Look,’ says Andy, annoyingly, being a grown-up about it and taking the blame, ‘I know I’ve been busy since I’ve started my new job- and I’ve no excuse, all I can say is, PR is like that (Graham rolls his eyes), it’s crazy, crazy stuff, but I’ll make more of an effort, we’ll do something together. How about the weekend?’

And this is where it all goes wrong, you see. Because Graham was doing so well with the avoiding that now he has to confront the problem it goes to pot. Andy arranges dinner at their flat, and there is Fiona looking glowing (and you can almost see her bra through her top, if you look closely enough), and Graham sits waiting for the food to cook and downing two bottles of Guinness in quick succession.

Police sirens shriek through the room, drowning out the telly. Andy is talking about something; he and Fiona have a mini argument in the kitchen. After this there are two versions of events, Andy’s and Graham’s.

Andy: Graham gets pissed before Andy has a chance to serve his acclaimed and delicious minestrone soup. Andy and Fiona are charming and lovely together. Graham stares at them in a way which becomes uncomfortable. Fiona hides/goes to the kitchen. Graham stares at the kitchen door and becomes borderline unpleasant (Graham is never really impolite, he just tosses his hair more when he’s upset) whenever Andy makes conversation. Graham downs two more bottles of Guinness before Fiona reappears with the food. Graham drinks a bottle of wine to himself during the meal; in fact he keeps it clutched in his left hand and eats with his fork in the right, while shooting Andy disturbing/ravenous looks approximately every ten seconds.

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One Response to “l.o.v.e.”

  1. February 16, 2010 at 1:49 pm, Graham Parker said:

    I very much liked the piece. I liked the way that it was reported as something that does always happen. There was no great commotion about it, but it was very much to the point and succinct.

    Also it was strange because I’m Graham, my brother’s Andy and he used to be seeing a girl called Fiona. Very odd.


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