Polo Mints

By Richard Owain Roberts

Location: Wilbraham Road, Chorlton

I think you will be coming into the shop today. I think it was this time a week ago that you last came. You hired a DVD and bought a pack of Polo mints. This is what you ‘do’ every time you come in. I think you’ll be coming in soon, so I reach around to the front of the counter and pick up a pack of Polo mints. I open the pack of Polo mints and take three out and put them in my mouth. I have a sense of enjoying them and this surprises me and I don’t know why exactly. I put three more Polo mints in my mouth, crunch them up, and suck on the flavour.

I finish the pack of Polo mints.

You don’t come in tonight and I have eaten six packs of Polo mints. I close the shop and, as I lock up, take another pack of Polo mints from the counter and put them in the back pocket of my black cords. That is seven packs now and I hope that will be okay.


It’s the next week and it’s the same time. I have already eaten two packs of Polo mints and am starting my third. I generally put four mints in at a time now; I think this is just about the right amount.

You are not here yet and I am rearranging the DVDs. We have thirty DVDs at this shop. Courtenay likes them alphabetical, I like them via stream of consciousness connections. I place Daddy Day Care next to Babel. I immediately do not understand this decision.

You have dark hair and dark eyes and like to rent DVDs on Tuesdays. Three weeks ago you took out You Don’t Mess With The Zohan and when you returned it you told Courtenay it was the best film you had seen in years. You told him that it was a ‘laugh riot’ and you enjoyed it so much that you had to, just had to, write a thousand-word review on IMDB. I think you were messing with Courtenay’s head. I think he is susceptible to that kind of thing.

I walk back to the counter eating the last Polo mint from the current pack. I crumple the empty wrapper in my hand and throw it on top of the shelf unit that stocks the cigarettes. This is where I throw all of the empty wrappers and I jump up and down on the spot to check that they are not visible.

You do not come into the shop tonight.


Pages: 1 2



5 Responses to “Polo Mints”

  1. January 29, 2010 at 12:27 pm, JoeG said:

    Certainly very sexy, it reminded me of I’m not sure what. More please.

  2. January 29, 2010 at 1:28 pm, Ian D. Smith said:

    Excellent portrayal of a puberty, awkward self-consciousness, embarrassment, identity problems and infatuation. The whole spotty mess is as clear as his brother’s advice to stop. The polo mints are not exactly the perfect crime, more of what would be described as a ‘cry for help’. Shannon spots the problem (two polo mints is one too many), and responds brilliantly. The sudden self-awareness, the mutual craziness, the move from inner to outer, ” we are outside, Chorlton is raining” is a big growing-up moment. Happy story. I like it.

  3. January 29, 2010 at 3:17 pm, Amy Lloyd said:

    I really enjoyed this. I like that it’s quirky without feeling forced, it’s really pleasent to look through the eyes of a character who has such a unique perception. Awes.

  4. February 04, 2010 at 1:38 pm, Katie G said:

    Well-written and an intriguing read. Loved the line where he feigns surprise at her hobbies, have done this myself before.
    Enjoyed the naievity of the characters.

  5. March 31, 2010 at 10:44 am, Denise Sackett said:

    Excellent portrayal of obession. Love the rhythms of madness


Leave a Reply




Via email: