Murder Mysteries and Money Troubles

I hope you’re not going to be too disappointed when I tell you that although I am using the new QWERTY keyboard, I am not using it for the great purpose of blogging while on the toilet. Instead, I am writing from the bus. I know I have written a
previous blog entry from the bus but this time (thanks to the QWERTY keyboard) it hasn’t taken me a whole hour to have written just this. The bus in question (if indeed it was in question) Is the 36 bus heading from Stockton to Hartlepool, if you’re at all interested; although it’s still the 36 bus heading from Stockton to Hartlepool even if you’re not interested.

Anyway, the great thing about being able to blog from location is that now it will hopefully become apparent that I do actually have a life – well kind OF. In the past I haven’t really reported on particular occasions or incidents that have happened to me because I’ve had to store them away and wait until I’m back at home in front of the computer. Therefore, I would only blog about something that happened to me somewhere if I felt it was still worth writing about Days later; but after time, things can seem a bit too incidental for blog inclusion. Well, no more. Thanks TO MODERN technology I can now blog anything at any Time, no matter how incidental, insignificant, or boring. Hurray for technology!

I’ve been in Stockton library this evening, attending a murder mystery event hosted by crime author Martin Edwards. The event was based on one of his lesser known short stories. The murder mystery comprised actors giving their testimony and alibis. The audience then Had to decipher who the murderer might have been based on what the characters said. I was pretty rubbish at this as I spent the first two minutes of each Actor’s monologue worrying that the actor might forget their lines. I vicariously went through the experiences I imagined the actors to be feeling- tension, dread and nervousness, and every time They paused or hesitated I would feel a sensation in my stomach and a pang of panic. None of the actors had in fact really hesitated or paused as a result of forgetting lines. In fact, any pauses or hesitations made were deliberate. One of the actors really had me in a tiz when she stuttered for a bit, hesitated and then said nervously, “o dear”. My throat grew dry and my stomach tightened. I felt as if I was that actor. I felt her pain. Others may not care, happy to Let the poor woman struggle on while they enjoyed their evening, but I understood. However, it soon transpired that her hesitations, stutters and nervous “o dears” were actually deliberate
And had something to do with something called acting. So, I think it’s safe to say I’ll never act in live theatre. Anyway, the good news is that Martin will probably be on the
Southside Podcast in the near future. In the meantime you can
check out his website and read his blog, then you’ll know what a real blog looks like.

To get to the library from the bus stop I had to walk through chapel grounds, away from the main high street. Half way through the grounds, in the most secluded part, I was accosted by a group of lads. One of them stood in front of me blocking my path and asked me – not particularly politely – to give him 45 pence. Partly through relief that he only wanted 45 pence and not more, I TOOK out 1 50 pence piece. He was explaining to me that he had done something to his leg and I knew that he was trying to come up with a feeble excuse for why he wanted the money. For some reason, because he’d asked for 45 pence (RATHER THAN 50 pence) I felt that his need was probably genuine. He’s probably been trained by some kind of organised crime gang in the art of psychology and this may be one of their methods of tricking people. Well I certainly fell for the psychology trick and gave him the money. He’s probably been through a whole educational program about getting money from people. Goodness knows what other methods he’s been taught. I was quite happy to let him carryout what he’d learned in his psychology classes, as long as he didn’t move on to acting out his P.E. lessons. I handed him 50 pence and began to walk away, but my path was blocked again by one of the other lads in the group. I wasn’t afraid. It was broad daylight, and the mind feels less susceptible to danger when the sun is shining, the birds are singing and there’s a nice warm breeze in the air. The lad who stepped in front of me started remonstrating with the lad who’d taken the money, telling him to give me it back. As far as I was concerned, I’d given him the money and I was quite happy to go on my way, but this other lad had a different outlook. The money was grabbed by the lad in front of me from the other’s hand. For a fleeting moment it was back in my hand. I pushed it back into the hand of the person I’d previously given it to, trying to assure the group who had now crowded all around me that I didn’t mind him having the money. I made a move to leave again but now I was blocked by several of them brawling in front of me. They were all hitting the lad who’d originally asked for the money. I gathered from their shouting that there was nothing wrong with him and he shouldn’t have received the money. But if the others in the group didn’t stop pummelling him, then there may well be something wrong with him very soon. I made a move to walk forward to leave but my path was blocked by brawling men. For some reason, rather than ignoring the situation and walking around the fight, I stepped forward into the brawling mass and separated them, telling them to calm down. The fighting immediately stopped and they were quiet. The quiet lasted for a few seconds. Then I walked forward and away from the group. At this point, the man must have realised I was blind. I think I got my cane out to separate the fighting. The lad who I originally gave the money to then came running towards me profusely apologising, saying he hadn’t realised I was blind and insisting I took the money back. I refused to take the money, keeping my hand in my pockets. He then started pleading with me to take the coin back. I shook my head, stopped walking and turned round. IN a low, calm voice I said to him, “Take it, as a lesson”. He said nothing more and I walked away out of the chapel grounds. I haven’t got a clue what the heck I was going on about when I said “take it, as a lesson”, nor did I know why I decided to calm the brawling group down. In fact, why did I even give the man money in the first place? It was a strange experience. I don’t think I would have ordinarily acted like that. It was as if something else was controlling my actions. I did feel a little bemused and amused by the situation and my reaction to it, especially my little preaching bit at the end, as if I’d been in control of the whole thing, engineering the situation to teach him something about himself. Perhaps I was sent by god to preach his message, and this was my first calling. Who knows what other parables I will live through. Perhaps I’ll even start performing miracles. I could claim to be able to heal people by touching them. I could have great fun with that, ESPECIALLY DURING my special women’s only gynaecological healing days.

Anyway, I hope you’ve learned something from my real-life parable. If you’re a priest or a vicar, feel free to use this blog in your sermons. I mean, all that Jesus stuff must get a bit boring after awhile. You do that every week. What about a change?

Well, best be off. Time to record the 91st southside Podcast.

Bless you!


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