Monday, March 15, 2010


I know it's not exactly punk rock, but every Friday I play badminton with Frippe, one of the cooks from work. 

We started playing each other towards the end of last year.  I hadn't played in a long time. Not that that bears much significance.  I'm not exactly the best player around.  I just enjoy throwing myself around the court, diving about on the floor.  What I lack in skill I make up in enthusiasm and energy.  As my dad would say, "Hamming it up..:"

Frippe on the other hand, takes it pretty fucking seriously.  For me this is a source of great amusement.  I've never seen anyone lose their rag as much as Frippe does when he's getting beat, which funnily enough has been the case the last few weeks.

A few consecutive lost points is usually aggrevation enough for Frippe to throw his racket at the floor, or kick the nearest wall.  "Fucking shit sport! What a fucking stupid game!  We should play table tennis instead, a real sport.  The lights in this place are putting me off.  This racket is a cheap piece of shit, it's not tight enough.  How much did you spend on your racket really?". 

Just a few examples of the nonsense that he spews out every week.

I of course, stand on the otherside of the net biting my lip, trying not to piss myself laughing.  Also good for a laugh is the safety excuses he comes up with before we start every week.  Literally as we're about to kick off, he'll stand there and make the most over the top, gaping yawn you've ever seen. He'll then spend a couple of minutes explaining to me that he was up until five in the morning and has hardly slept at all.  Otherwise he'll start performing all these stretching excersises, stating that he's done something odd with his back.  Or he has a cold.  Or a hangover.  It's got so far now that he's even started relaying these excuses on to other people at work, the day before we play.  The man is literally David Brent!

It's almost worse when he's winning, since he's even worse in victory.  His new tactic seems to be that he'll call a couple of dodgy "outs" at the back of the court, cheating me out of the odd point.  I'll then get wound up, call him a cheating cunt, and then start losing my concentration.  Once he's in the driving seat he'll then start taking the piss, dancing and shit before he serves.  "Something up with your racket?  How come you missed that?  I'm actually well under my game today, you really should be beating me, taking advantage.  That was a great serve wasn't it?  Have you ever seen anyone make a serve like that?"

I hate to say it, but my competetive streak kicks in and I take the bait every fucking week and lower myself to his level... I will almost always eventually lose my head, and lose a bunch of points with it.

There was though, a sweet, sweet moment a couple of weeks ago.  Frippe was leading a set something like 16 to 10.  He was in unbelievably cocky mood, racing towards the 21 points he needed to win the set and the match.  I finally took a point from him to make it 16-11.  And then another. And another. I could sense the momentum turning and Frippe's cockiness deflating.  By the time I got back to 16 each, he was completely silent.  "Oj oj oj Frippe, what's happened?"  Nothing...  I then pull off a ridiculously lucky point and Frippe finally explodes.  "Fuck!!!!" smashing his racket off the floor and kicking a rubbish bin in one motion.  I turned my back whilst wiping away a tiny tear of joy.

Of course, when it's all over, we're back to being friends again.  After showering away the sweat, we head to work.  He's a really great cook and by the time I munching down whatever delicious dish he's made for the two of us, the nonsense of the court is well and truly forgotten.  For another week anyway.

As I go about setting up the bar, Frippe takes care of prepping the kitchen.  I'll be doing a stock take, Frippe making a batch of meatballs.  And then he'll ask, "What's the time?" 

"Five" I say. 

"Five exaclty?"

", three minutes past..."

"Three minutes past...that's eighteen minutes it's taken me to make fifty meatballs.  Have you ever seen anyone make that many meatballs in eighteen minutes?"...

No comments:

Post a Comment