Having recently posted that no-one could make me laugh like Bronnie, the universe conferred and gave me Kev*.
Kevin doesn’t make me laugh quite the way Bronnie did, assuredly, but he has an earnestness and seriousness to everything he says which makes my laughter bubble up and gurgle as he discourses on anything and everything – and usually laughter that erupts when he is being his most serious. These discourses usually take place towards the end of the working day as I try to get on so I can get out.
Kevin first made me laugh when he sprayed disinfectant around my work surface, coming alarmingly close to my laptop. The conversation turned in a nano-second to the poor quality of electronics today as though it were perfectly natural to lob 2 litres of Mr Muscle at a computer and then expect it to work thereafter. A cross between Alf Garnett, Jeremy Kyle, Jeremy Paxman and Father Christmas, we have become fast friends.
It’s crazy, Mel. What we’re allowed to do at home and allowed to do at work is two different things.
At home, if there was a toilet problem you’d just pour bleach down it.
Maybe…depends on what the problem was, I suppose, Kev.
You can’t ‘ere.
Because someone might be allergic to bleach.
No, not really, Mel. If you’re allowed to do it at home, why can’t you do it in the workplace?
Take florescent bulbs.
If one of them went at home, you’d just change it.
No, I wouldn’t.
Why ever not?
What if something went wrong, Kev?
What could go wrong? All you do is push the plastic slots aside, insert the new tube and then push the plastic slots back.
But not everyone would know how to do that safely.
Are people that stupid, Mel?
Yes…yes, I think we might be.
It’s health and safety in the workplace gone mad I tell you.
Come on, Kev, can’t you really see how the firm could be liable if someone tried to change a bulb and then electrocuted themselves?
ELECTROCUTED THEMSELVES? It would never ‘appen.
Then you’d deserve to be electrocuted if you were that stupid.
You know, that’s why they probably have these workplace laws.
So they don’t have to spend time working out who’s too stupid to change a florescent lightbulb.
It’s the same with conkers.
In my day you could take a chap’s eye out and he wouldn’t bat an eyelid.
Kev, that’s probably because…
Now they want the kids to wear safety goggles and a hard hat to play conkers!
Okay, then, I must get o…
In my day teachers knew what to do with their ruler.
Yep, and it wasn’t for drawing straight lines.
Oh, you mean corporal punishment.
They’ve even gone and outlawed that.
For quite a while, Kev.
What’s the matter with the world, eh, Mel?
That was then and this is now.
What does that mean?
Just that times change.
And not for the better, Mel. Not for the better.
You may be right.
I know I’m right.
Could be, Kev. Could be.
Anyway, night, Mel, I’ll let you get on.
I’ll see you tomorrow.
I’ll look forward to it, Kev.
Such lovely manners. Not like the hooligans of today. Only last week…