Friday, 29 July 2011

Very Public Breakup

The local town drunk is on a bender.

Not that this is unusual, but this has been the bender to end all benders. Sober, he is the nicest man you would ever meet, but after a few too many he turns into an unreasonable, argumentative and disruptive individual. I guess this is why his live in girlfriend, also an alcoholic, left him following a very public breakup.

Lots of people argue in public but what made their breakup memorable was that it took place in the middle of the main road. Wild slapping, slurring and insults broke the air of our normally quiet hamlet. It drew a great crowd - people are drawn to watching things that aren't quite the norm and this semblance of a wrestling match was definitely not normal. The only thing missing from this fight was the leotards.

A popcorn vendor moved them onto the road verge where the fight continued. Then came the grand finale. One almighty shove and the girlfriend ended up on her back in the mud, skirt above her head, flailing around like an epileptic fish. The drunk had emerged victorious, egged on by the cheers of this carnival crowd.

The girlfriend bolted and we haven't seen her since. The drunk is still in oblivion, only now he isn't ten feet tall and bulletproof. He has become maudlin about the whole affair. His drinking buddy has disappeared, his plans of moving into a new place and starting a new life have gone and it's everyone's fault but his.

We caught a glimpse of him last night - the blind is half open on his front window and he's sitting in there with a bottle for company. I don't know whether he's trying to show everyone he's fine or he's hoping to catch a glimpse of her coming back. Either way, it's a sad state of affairs.

How do you help someone who doesn't want to help himself?

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