Being a total prat

Wokingham Travel Blog

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I don’t normally consider myself as a total prat. I’m usually only an occasional prat. Similar to an occasional table (that is a table that is usually something else, but performs the role of a table when necessary, for example an upturned box. Do not use an upturned spaniel they don’t stay still long enough and you may spill your tea) I unfortunately feel the need to perform the role of prat far too often, spilling my tea is just par for the course.

Recently however I broke the bonds of occasional pratness and reached the towering heights familiar only to that of a total prat. This heightened sensation was only achievable with the addition of a not insignificant amount of alcohol. With the addition of alcohol what would appear to be totally absurd behaviour at any other time, now becomes completely normal behaviour to your common or garden prat.  

It was an average 30th birthday party (not mine I hasten to add, not that old yet!) But my friends T and T1 had the pleasure of turning that age at the weekend and I went along to ease the transition between sober and merry.

T had seen fit to hire the function room at a local pub (The Seven Stars in Knowl hill, I highly recommend it.) The function room comes with its own skittle alley running down one side, with a raised wooden barrier approx 1ft high separating the alley from the rest of the room. As we gained numbers the skittle alley got more and more use until there was quite a wait for my turn to come around. So I spent my time usefully sampling the local brew, resetting the skittles and egging on my friend E (a different E from the American one, I won’t say which one is prettier. Yes I will. Its E.) As I was saying, egging on my friend E to “jump like a bunny” along the length of this barrier, crossing over the barrier on each jump alternately. She tried, but failed gracefully after two hops. We could have left it there, no bruised egos. But no, we had a prat in the room and he had been drinking.  E challenged me to better her attempt, and without a moment’s hesitation I accepted. May I just add at this stage I was wearing my slippy shoes, a bad workman blames his tools, I know, but there it is, the shoes were slippy. My first four hops were marvelous and soon I had the whole room’s attention as I dramatically leaped both feet together, across the barrier and back. With my vertical trajectory mastered I felt I was lacking in some forward motion, as there is no prevailing wind in the function room, (except just outside the toilets which is a little unsavory). My next jump gave me that forward momentum I required and soon I was eating up the distance to the end of the barrier. My feet landed for a further hop. Time slowed as their purchase on the ground gave sideways. My previously gleeful expression changed to that of doubt and then more rapidly to terror. My calf sliced down on the top edge of the barrier, forcing muscle between the unforgiving wooden plank and my shinbone. My feet shot towards the centre of the alley, my legs folded over the barrier and my head hit the ground.

Now in times like these it’s important never to show any sign of weakness. Don’t shout out in pain. don’t cry. Your audience must rapidly be convinced that it’s all part of the show.  I leaped up from the ground with my trademark inane grin and told E in a boastfully loud voice “you see, just like that. Only not the end bit.”

I walked stiffly off to the bar with a confident smile pinned to my face and the searing white-hot pain still cutting into my leg.

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