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Saint Martin, The Popemobile and The Butcher

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Congratulations to Cardinal Camillio Doglione from Vatican City
who correctly identified the deliberate mistake in my last story.
A souvenir  “The Bucket …is… full of it “  tee shirt is now winging it’s way to Cardinal Doglioni.

The young lady revealed in my previous expose was of course NOT my neighbour.  She is Senior Research Fellow in Pneumatics at the University of Rome, as well as part-time aqua aerobics instructor for the Pontiff.

Today however, I would like to bore the living bejaysus  entertain you with two short stories about my REAL neighbour, Saint Martin of FOT.

*       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *

Introduction;  Mrs GOF and I live in a sparsely populated corner of the world. Our nearest, and only permanent neighbour for the last 29 years, Saint Martin of FOT, lives 800 metres away as the kookaburra flies, or 3 kilometres if the aforementioned kookaburra chose instead to walk and hop along the vehicular road.

*      *      *      *      *      *      *      *      *     *      *

Story #1.

Saint Martin of FOT drives a small 4WD vehicle that, with a very small amount of modification in my farm workshop could easily be converted into a replica of the Popemobile. He almost unintentionally started this process on his previous vehicle a very long time ago when we were both young and moderately impoverished.

His ancient and severely-rusted-along-the-panel-joints Toyota Land Cruiser was vibrating and careening flat-chat down the steep dirt track heading towards civilisation when suddenly a large chunk of cabin decided to part company with the remainder of the truck.

It frisbeed upwards and backwards before crashing back onto the gravel road leaving Saint Martin of FOT speeding forth with his white knuckles holding onto the steering wheel for dear life. A howling gale was now rushing over his bald head, and his earlobe vortices generated contrails of condensed water vapour which funneled into the slipstream behind him.
Efficient brakes were just a long-lost memory for this old Land Cruiser and Saint Martin of FOT, during the kilometre that it required to come to a complete halt, philosophically concluded that this whole unfortunate incident was probably a sign from God that it was time to upgrade to a more reliable motor vehicle.

*      *      *      *      *      *      *      *      *

Interlude;   Saint Martin is indeed almost a saint.
Whilst he does not have a particularly high opinion of himself, everyone I know holds him in high regard.
Saint Martin is a very gentle man (most of the time) and quite diminutive in stature (all of the time).

*      *      *      *      *      *      *      *      *

Story #2.  One day, almost seventeen years ago now, Saint Martin of FOT accompanied me to a Bulk Meat Shop in Cairns.

Standing behind the counter was a mean-faced cleaver-meister who looked like Hulk Hogan’s twin brother whose staple diet could well have been steroids diluted only occasionally by slabs of barbecued tenderloin.  A very large man wearing a blue and white striped apron who was carrying a boning knife in a huge paw which occasionally twitched involuntarily, probably because his blood nicotine was at a dangerously low level. Either that, or he had anticipatory relief-tremors because his diet had caused him to be seriously constipated.

I asked politely for “two kilograms of rump steak please.”

The Hulk replied “This is a BULK butchery. Didst thou not readeth mine heiroglyph outside? I only dispense WHOLE rumps.”

Despite The Hulk’s almost biblical explanation of his trading terms, Saint Martin of FOT casually walked around the counter, reached up and grabbed The Hulk by the lapels of his Bulk Butchery shirt and promised him permanent physical damage if he did not immediately “supply my friend with the requested two kilograms of rump steak.”

The Hulk meekly proceeded to cut two kilograms off a whole rump before neatly wrapping it in plain white paper whilst apologising profusely to me for his previous outburst of bad manners.

Neighbours like Saint Martin of FOT are as scarce as hen’s teeth.

*       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *

One of these stories is based on fact, the other a summary of the most vivid dream which I have ever had in my life. Please take your pick as to which is which.

Occasionally dreams and real life are like two peas in a pod.

*       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *

About GOF

"Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it, depends upon what you put into it." (Tom Lehrer)

19 responses »

  1. Is that St. Martin’s hair or the contrails?

    • That’s his hair Lauri…..his cranial clearing used to have a perimeter of old-growth hair.
      The useless artist failed to include the contrails. I think I need to sack the bastard.

  2. Well if that wasn’t your real neighbour, I hope to hell I can get a refund for the airfare I purchased to visit her….I mean you, next week. No offense to Saint Martin of FOT, of course, who I’m sure is a lovely man.

    • Rich, I am gutted that it seems you had another agenda for your visit next week.
      Perhaps you can re-ticket to Rome and wander around the Vatican in search of her.
      She should be fairly conspicuous. 🙂

  3. Y’know, I can’t for the life of me separate fact from fiction, GOF. Maybe that says more about my innocent nature than anything else. Then again…

  4. I loved your explanation of the “truth” about your very revealing young lady, who is NOT really your neighbor, as being a “Senior Research Fellow in Pneumatics at the University of Rome, as well as part-time aqua aerobics instructor for the Pontiff.” LOL – She’s a pneumatics expert, huh? Right. I sure wouldn’t mind believing that. 🙂

    And there are at least three related jokes that I’ve love to make at the expense of the Catholic hierarchy, but in the spirit of compassion for long suffering Catholic parishioners, I will refrain from making their burden heavier.

    And if you think that dreams and real life can be like two peas in a pod, well I don’t know how I’m supposed to tell the difference between the two in your two stories – other than to toss a coin and have a 50% chance of my choice for heads being the correct answer. You’ve already admitted to leading us astray with “tails” in your previous post, so I’m calling heads on this coin toss. Lol

    I’m picking story #1 as the real life experience, since it was so vividly described in your writing. And I designated it as heads, and heads came up in my coin toss… Lol

    • Your process of logic and scientific analysis has come up with the correct answer Chris…….now I need to find another prize from The Bucket’s stash of goodies to send to you. 🙂

      It is very wise of you to question the young lady’s qualifications in Pneumatics……as well as most of the other stuff you will read here……but she certainly looks moderately pumped up to me.

      • Well thanks indeed, GOF! I’m very much looking forward to finding out just what I have won! Could it possibly be Ms. Pneumatic? She would be quite a prize! And wouldn’t my wife be surprised?! In that potentially homicidal way that wives can become, when they get that kind of surprise! Lol

        But hey, at least trying to escape being murdered by my spouse, will add a little extra fun and adventure in our lives! A really grand game of marital cat and mouse – although mice usually don’t fare well in that game, and I know that I’m not the cat here, so maybe I should reconsider… Let me sleep on it. Lol

        It’s true that I did use a method to get the answer, that is a form of scientific analysis, based upon the laws of probability. I know that it must be scientific, since every year a very large and expensive government grant goes to scientists who flip a coin one million times. The mission of their research is to prove that once again, in the latest and current year, that the probability of the coin landing either heads or tails up, is still 50% for both.

        It is very important for this research to be conducted annually, so we can all be safe in the knowledge that the laws of probability for the coin toss have not changed for at least one more year – although individual results may vary, and most of all, while gambling.

        Well, I’ll stop all my rambling on now, as I’ve become quite long winded, and I’ll just say thanks again, for letting me play in your playground. Lol 🙂

        • You’re welcome to play in this playground any time Chris. Somehow i overlooked your reply with WP stuffing around with the little orange box which used to work perfectly before they started messing around with it.

          If I ever get Miss Pneumatic in my prize cupboard it may be a while before I get around to forwarding her to you…….mainly because I’m acting in YOUR best interests….we don’t want any unrest in your house just because of whatever prize I choose to send to you. 🙂

  5. It sounds like The Hulk was a whole rump himself.

    • He would have been highly sought after by cannibals HG…..except of course those cannibals who were concerned about growth hormones in their diet.

  6. Your St. Martin is tiny…I wonder if he’s tiny in other areas or just in your neck of the woods? The Ozarks tend to produce taller folk, so a man of 5’10” would be called short. Since I’m so much bigger on the inside than outside, locals don’t make mention of my lack of height (or it could have something to do with being the least of my kind…even Reed women are usually pushing 6′–maybe they’re afraid a bigger Reed would ‘git ’em’).

    • I’m sure Saint Martin would be considered small in most geographical areas of the world MT, but like you he is a personality and intellectual tardis. 🙂

  7. Followed your Piano room link and it’s great. How long have I been missing the link off this page? I can’t tell if I’m trained to ignore splash adds or your page has changed again.

    • Thanks Peter……I spent a bit of time reorganising the sidebar last week, so thank you very much for being the first person to check out the piano room. It’s mainly there as a challenge to me to improve my meagre abilities…..I do love that old-fashioned romantic piano music as well as most Elton John stuff.


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