The bus driver looked like he had the contents of his workshop sewn into his face. Bolts, nuts, screws and rings all protruded from every nook and cranny of his grizzly features. I have never been inclined to get any kind of body adornment – tattoos, piercings, welding, anything like that – but this driver’s ambition and sheer thoroughbred logic intrigued me.
I asked him as he was driving along where he had installed so much street furniture and he pointed me to a small shop off the main drag which had a red flickering neon light advertising it’s presence.
I have to admit I was tempted.
What would they say at work if I were to stroll in, clanking with the best of them? It would definitely put a different spin on those supervision sessions which would shut up the endlessly tiresome Mr. Ffanshaw.
What would it be like to go to work chain-mail free and then come back home at the end of the day looking like a steam punk terminator?
‘Hi honey, I’m home, ‘ I would call out nonchalantly and he would reply as usual, ‘How was your day?‘ And I’d respond as usual, ‘Same old, same old’ and then he’d come out of the kitchen to welcome me as usual and then no doubt shriek at what he saw in front of him.
And no doubt we’d both collapse in a fit of giggles and end up in bed for the rest of the night, me jangling whenever I moved and him probing my tender wounds, sometimes gently and at other times cheekily so that I would squeal in agony.
But I blinked and watched the neon sign shop pass me by and I cursed my indecision. So I jumped out at the next stop and ran back to the shop, determined to capitalise on the moment when I saw myself dressing for Armageddon.
Months later and Mr Ffanshaw still hasn’t spoken to me. Dave has moved out and I’m left with a disparate collection of ironware rusting up my face. I look in the mirror and wonder whether it was all worth it.
But then I look at the rest of my body – the prostheses, the cables, the pulleys and gears and think, hell yes. I’ll be ready for them whenever they land. There’ll be no stopping this terminator when the moment comes.