Monday, September 21, 2009

Mackie R Toe: Espresso, home

This all happened hours after I had that coffee, but it was infinitely more interesting to write about than what I was doing at the time. Actually, I'll let you be the judge. Choose Your Own Adventure. Or Pick-a-Path. Anyone remember those? I think the Choose Your Own Adventure series was more universally recognised, but I read a Pick-a-Path first. I wonder who sued who for those valuable valuable pre-teen book dollars?

If you want to hear about me playing Crash Bandicoot 2 on my PSP, even though the disc was in my PS3 and the whole thing was screen-sharing over the network, but after one level I realised it wasn't worth the effort because the latency made it almost entirely unplayable, well I think I just gave away the punchline.

If you want to hear about the six women at the table next to me at the pub mangling the word "macchiato" through the rusty pencil sharpener of their inner-outer-northern-south-eastern-suburbs accents, read on.

So there I was at the pub. Oh shit, I left the italics on didn't I. I'd best switch them off so you don't think I'm whispering. Ah. That's better. Does it ever annoy you that when people want to italicise something when the whole sentence is already in italics, they just un-italic that word? Me too, but that doesn't explain why I did it in the second sentence of this paragraph. It's just there to illustrate that un-italicising hardly gives you the same effect as italicising. It's as though they just blurted out that word a bit too loudly.

"If you ask me, it was complete bullshit."

Bullshit looks louder doesn't it? Maybe we need a new strain of super-slanty italics that are whispered even quieter. Or we could just put them up in the air a bit.

Oh shit, I left the italics on didn't I.

I'm going to do that from now on. Oh. I did it again. Control-i. There we go. Let's get back to the story.

So it was the night of Monday the twenty-first of September. A movie had just started on channel nine. Overseas readers: don't get confused with our channel naming. The existence of channel nine might delude you into thinking we only have nine channels. That's ridiculous, and couldn't be further from the truth. In reality, we only have five. The movie starred John Cusack and Diane Laine. And some dogs. I thought for a second I spotted Jason Alexander, and realised it would be terribly insulting to tell someone you thought they were Jason Alexander, although that in itself would be quite insulting to Jason Alexander too. Sadly, the sound was muted, as is customary with televisions in pubs. I had no idea what the movie was called, or about. I was about to concentrate a bit more on the screen in an attempt to deduce at least one, but preferably two, of these facts, until I realised eavesdropping on strangers is usually infinitely more rewarding.

"So, two espresso, what about you guys?"
They were taking the orders themselves.
"A flat white."
One of them was writing down all their orders, to take up to the bar.
"I'll have an espresso too."
I was thinking of trying the coffee, but it was going to take hours for this order to get filled. They continued their order collecting
"I'll have a macchiato."
The whole table made one of those "oooooh!" sounds, like when somebody snogged on Saved By the Bell.
"What's a macchiato?"
Pronounced MAC-key-ARE-TOE.
"Froth. No milk."
"FROTH. But no MILK."
"I thought it was COLD milk!"
I'd say they were laughing like a pack of hyenas, because the hyena is the first laughing animal that springs to mind due to its tendency to be likened to groups of laughing humans, but a flock of galahs is probably closer to the truth. I'm not entirely sure if galahs come in a flock or a pack or a deck (incorrect use of collective nouns cracks me up more than almost anything else) or if they even laugh. But their laughing sounded like a galah looks.

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