When Keenness Is Next To Godliness In The Celestial Plan

I’ve always been keen. Keen on school, on Marjory Turnpike’s dimples, chess, Marjory Turnpike’s increasing bust… you perhaps get the picture. We married and I became keen on my shed and my bicycle.

Keenness comes with a consequence. You volunteered a lot. It was inevitable that when Bolton-on-Sleeze decided it needed a greater provision for cyclists I would be involved. That morphed into a ‘reclaim the streets’ campaign led by Crichton ‘call me Rich’ D’Arbney.

There are 12 of us ready to go when Rich announces ‘We ride in the buff.’

I look around. No one protests, beyond the odd twang of disgruntled Lycra. Rich isn’t the sort to be contradicted. 

As Bolton has a micro-climate twinned with Stavanger it is unlikely there will be spectators. We strip off, careful to face outwards, avoiding what lies beneath.  Skin is weird, and we epitomise that variety from Jonjo’s taught cotton to Albert’s recycled polythene. Our flesh tones range across the Dulux ‘with a hint of’ spectrum. 

It’s then I notice this person on the other pavement… just watching. Smiling. Laughing. Marjory.

Our marriage has been underpinned by minimal exposure (apart from the Great Southend Embarrassment of 2001). Marjory has never seen one buttock let alone both. So much exposure renders her blind to identity. We are just so much flesh. Keeping my gaze high and my bladder taut, I watch her take a flyer and go. I’m all a tizz. But in an interesting way. 

She turns up every Friday, once with the South Crumblewold Knitting Circle, then her Darn and Yarn book group. I am one of several bottoms, the subject of her ribaldry.

We both enjoy  Friday nights. Occasionally I make cocoa with a chocolate digestive dunker while she loosens her corsets. Life is good.

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published two anthologies of short stories, Life, in a Grain of Sand and Life in a Flash. More will appear soon, including a memoir of my mother's last years. I will try and continue to blog regularly at geofflepard.com about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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8 Responses to When Keenness Is Next To Godliness In The Celestial Plan

  1. Nothing like a bit of naked protesting to add some spice! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rachel M says:

    Was it effective as a protest strategy?

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      It is certainly eye catching. I remember being in a cafe at the National theatre when the regular reclaim the streets ride was gathering on s Friday evening and, well, um, being rather distracted when several stripped off, stuck their clothes in a rucksack and set off, all of a jangle…

      Like

  3. I once ran the Bolton marathon in 88 degrees F. It might have been more comfortable in the buff

    Liked by 1 person

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