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Unco Tested

Paul boils water for dinner but accidentally drops the sauce jar.

Scalding hot water flies everywhere, all over his face and arms.

‘four out of five,’ he murmurs.


He runs to the cold tap but slips on the splashed droplets, falling on his arse and wrists.

‘Two of Five’


Paul pulls his head under a running tap but lifts up, stabbing his head on the pipe.

Blood drips from his crown down his cheeks.

‘One from five’


Paul’s friend Tantalus arrives for dinner.

He quickly shows the guest to his table and lights a match for a candle, but the curtains catch.

The front dining room glows red as Paul reaches for the pot of pasta water but throws the sauce.

The sugary reduction ignites and crackles over embers.

‘Three outta five.’


He quickly reaches into the corner of the pantry for his pile of fire extinguishers.

Paul lifts the first cobalt can with spout and triggers. Out spurts a small shot of foam.

He reaches for the second foam sprayer and fires. Nothing. Expired…

So, he reaches for the furthest can and funnels the foam over the flaming curtain.

‘Must have been from last birthday’s cake incident. Hardly needed to spray that time. I gave it a

one out of five then. This tops it at a four o’ five!’

Tantalus sits a chair closest to sauce blackened drapery and drops his head into cupped hands.

‘If you don’t post all these constant reviews how will anyone else know you cared? Your unco tested

moments go uncontested!’


Paul replies, ‘“They” make all the tall Paul fall calls. The only ones qualified to give any

genuine review are the voices in your head.’

Tantalus, ‘You review your reviewers? Judge your own judges?’

‘I just leave them their own critique… Five of five…’



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