My upstairs neighbour calls me Flanders – after Ned, of The Simpsons. Apparently I have the sort of cheery, girlscouty disposition that, rather than making others equally happy, makes them want to shove marshmallows up my nose until I stop breathing. My neighbour now knows better. Last summer she observed me wrangling eight practice footballs into the back of my truck only to have them bounce onto Dufferin Street with me screaming “you little mothaf*ckas!!” at them. So I have a dual nature. Thus I, as Cheerful New Guy, accepted the assignment of this update, even tho’ I had a drinking responsibility last night. So the following comes to you after a morning of walking in stinky circles grousing…“where’s my fekkin socks? where’s my oatmeal? where’s my fekkin socks??” Have a super doodly-oodly day!
The day begins with Dan and Harry discussing the previous nights events. Dan wants to know if Harry played hide-the-sausage with Big Bird. Harry claims no, but is chuffed with himself: “I’ve depressed a guy and impressed a doll – my work here is done!”
Jack and Paul appear, and Dan wants to talk to Paul alone. Paul awkwardly sends his Gramps into the Cafe for brekky. Dan’s ultimatum – Paul has till Friday to pay up.
Leanne’s plodding, tiring, dull existence as a 26-year-old restaurant owner with a small butt, only one chin, and cool blouses continues. She shrieks at the builder for keeping her awake all night. At work, she asks Paul if he ever regrets buying into the restaurant. He assures her, no. (ed: Personally, I think he’s in the wrong business. Paul should play bingo professionally. The way his eyes micro-dart madly in their sockets, he could play 10 cards at once.) Later at the Rovers, Dan muscles up to our skitty-eyed chef once again. Jack smells something fishy, and asks how much Paul is into the bookies for. Nothing he can’t sort out by week’s end, says Paul.
BRAT – WORST SAUSAGE
As Steve and Michelle prepare for the day, Steve wants to know if Michelle has spoken to Wendy. Michelle hasn’t, and is apparently taking her sixteen-year-old son (the new one) to the dentist. This disgusts Steve to no end, who points out that Ryan goes to the dentist on his own.
Michelle meets Alex at the dentist. She decides that the required aftercare is some ice cream and the pictures. On their way home, a scene ensues that I’m sure was stolen from a corndog ’50’s musical…guy and girl, galavanting through the mall, having a stairs-and-elevator race. The fromage factor is off the charts. At the bottom of the stairs, Michelle declares that she loves Alex, and he can stay for ever an’ ever. Steve and Ryan will just have to put up or shut up. Michelle stops at Liam’s to try and reason with Woody the Cowboy Ryan, now that Buzz Lightyear Alex is her new favourite toy. Ryan feels pushed out, says Alex is not his brother and never will be, and furthermore, thank God the rest of the family has the sense to see Alex as an interloper. And no, he didn’t pack his bags as he knew this was the predictable result of the day.
At the butchers, Ashley and Kirk are engaged in a frantic match of the”I Went to the Shop” alphabet game. It’s Ashley’s turn and since “A” is allowed, Ashley buys A pie, Brisket, Corned beef, Duckling and gets stuck on ‘E’. (Entrails, dude!) The mental house of cards collapses and he has a little freak-out. Apparently things are slow in the shop…..real slow.
Over a drink in the Rovers, Ashley reveals to Claire the reason he is being all touchy and sounding like a brassed-off elf: business is so bad that he has to let Kirkeh go. He is despondant over this, and breaks the news to Kirk who is now despondant as well. They decide to dispel the despondancy by sharing a proper Scotch egg cooking session. In a gentlemanly gesture, Ashley accompanies Kirk home to tell Chesney the news, and bring the scotch eggs. He sees the insane, pungent lab that is the lads’ kitchen.
Restored to her full plucky-potential, Claire tells Ashley over a pint to stop beating himself up. She urges him to diversify into maybe sizzling pies, farmers markets or organic meats. In a weird Sweeney Todd moment, Ashley suggests killing all vegetarians.
TOO MUCH HIDE-THE-SAUSAGE
David sees Tina knocking on the Platts door. He invites her to wait with him in the salon, but she elects to wait with Gail and have a tea. Even though Gail is on my dolt list – it somehow warmed my heart to see Tina treat her like a human being.
Tina has not told her parents the news. Gail asks if Tina has considered an abortion. There would be a 3 to 4 week waiting period. Tina is unsure of her choice but feels quite strongly that lying to David must be minimized, if it has to happen at all.
Tina is pissed that Gail told Audrey….more people knowing stuff behind David’s back. David walks in. “Ooh…atmosphere,” he notes. Tina wants to talk. Alone. They go to Roy’s and David gets all guarded and dramatic…Tina reveals she’s not binning David…and doesn’t provide much explanation for her own distant behaviour. This is good enough for David for the time being, however. He apologizes for the tattoo, and says he can learn how to be a good boyfriend.
David leaves for work as his mother enters the Cafe. Gail speaks to Tina alone and throws another option into the mix – Tina can have an abortion, privately, in one week’s time and Gail will pay for it. While Gail feels this is the best choice, she does leave Tina the headspace to make her own decision. That evening, Tina agrees, and asks Gail to accompany her.