It was a full moon today, a fact I did not notice until I had encountered several moon-maddened individuals on my way home.
On my way into Brixton Tube Station, a hooded man was shouting incoherently. I had thought he was shouting coherently, since I had my headphones on at the time, listening to ‘Union of Knives’ (Their album is just astounding. I exhort you all to go out and buy it, and not just download it free from some robber site).
It turned out, when I had turned ‘the Knives’ down, that he was incoherent. However, just as he was halfway down the escalator he had a moment of lucidity and started screaming at the passengers going up on the opposite escalator.
‘Come on Then! Why don’t you say something, instead of just staring.. staring! Staring!’
He got off at Stockwell and shouted at a poster of Jeremy Clarkson.
Then in Earls Court, I was approached by a gay homeless man to whom I gave a cigarette and would not go away.
‘Are you going out tonight?’ he asked
‘Have you been to Heaven? It’s for gays and bisexuals, but you don’t have to be gay or bisexual to go there. They let anybody in.’
‘I’ve forgotten your name.’
‘That’s because I didn’t tell you.’
‘What is it?’
‘Ernest,’ I said, off the top of my head.
‘Can I call you Ernie?’
‘I’d rather you didn’t.’
‘Do you believe in God?’ By this time, I was becoming a little annoyed, since I had given this man a cigarette and some money in the hope that he’d go away, but he was showing no signs of doing so.
‘No,’ I said. ‘It’s a stupid idea.’
There followed a moment of blissful silence, after which he pointed to the sky and said ‘But how do you explain the sun and moon and the creation of the world?’
‘There was a big ball of gas,’ I said, ‘which collapsed under its own gravity to form a spinning disc of burning plasma. The outer rings cooled and clumped together as planets, while the centre stabilised to become our sun. The moon was a smaller planet which at some point caught in Earth’s gravitational field.’
‘Don’t you believe you have a soul?’
‘Because, as I said, it’s an absurd idea.’
‘I have a soul.’
‘Good for you!’
‘How do you explain the fact that when I slashed my wrists...’ He showed me the scars as prove of this event, ‘I was floating above the operating table and watching the doctors work on me?’
‘Anaesthetics,’ I said, at which he gave me a glare and stomped off into the night.
I stopped off in Tescos and while in the checkout two men came in and said to the Security Guard ‘Have you got any doves?’
The SG looked puzzled.
‘Doves? Do you sell them?’
I thought I must have misheard, but he repeated the question to a baffled SG, after which they set off into the store.
As I was leaving I saw one of them leaning against the door, a mobile clenched to his face.
‘I’m telling you bro. They don’t sell doves here!’
Outside, the full moon was shining down on me balefully, like a mad bugger’s beacon.