People are starting to talk about my car.
"Your car is way old", says my daughter's classmate. "Is it from Tudor times?"
They're doing the Tudors in school.
"It's only seventeen years old", I say.
I admit that my car is not exactly a luxury brand. Frankly, it is a steaming turd of a car. If you stand close enough, you can hear rusting. On the other hand, it is still my car. So I am more than a little offended by the attitude of the mechanic who gives it an MOT last week.
"Sorry it took so long", he says, when I pick it up from the garage. "When you brought THAT in, me and Andrew, we were, like, you're having a fucking laugh aint' ya?!"
The mechanic leans back in his chair and laughs malevolently, which makes his neck fat jiggle. I laugh too. (Usually, the more offensive and/or the more sexist a comment is, the more I laugh.) This is because I am a pathetic people pleaser.
"But it passed yeah?" I say.
He wipes a greasy discharge triggered by the exertion of laughter from his chin, then lowers and raises his head, briefly, in assent.
"Thing with bangers is the engines sometimes last longer than the bodywork”, he says. “Andrew said it wasn’t quite as crap as it looks.”
"Great. Brilliant" I say. "How much do I owe?"
His fat stubby fingers hover over the MOT certificate. It is clear he doesn't want to give me the paperwork until he is satisfied that I have absorbed into my very being the horrible horror of my vehicle. He sets his pen on the table.
"Thing is love, after you came in, this guy in a Land Rover drives up. Said he was a waiter", he says.
I don't know what he's talking about.
“Waiter?” I ask.
The mechanic looks exasperated. It is as he suspected. Anybody who drives about town in a travesty of an automobile is bound to have the IQ of a bag of cocks.
“As in: He. Was. Going. To. Wait. In. The. Office”, he says, slowly, for my benefit. “So we did the Land Rover first. That's why it took so long. Though it wasn't just cos the driver was waiting. Fucking beaut it was. Dog’s bollox. We had to toss a coin over who was gonna do yours!”
He laughs triumphantly. Ho ho ho ho. Ha ha ha ha. He is the Jabba the Hutt of mechanics. Sweat pours out from between the creases of his lardaceous neck fat like oil from the old Castrol GTX advert.
"Ta", I say, in what is the climax of my Doormat of the Year routine. "Thanks anyway".
Later, driving my hunk of junk home, I start wondering if, maybe, I should get a new car. OK, it would be totes bad for the environment, but at least it wouldn't smell like steamed monkey shit, and the window rubbers would be free of algae.
On the other hand, if I did get me a fancy car, there is a chance Jabba and his sidekick Andrew would take it in turns to jerk off into the glove box during the MOT, which is obviously unacceptable, so I'll stick with the Corsa after all.