...or I could tell you about the April Fool's Day prank to beat all pranks, back in 2004 it was.
The previous week we'd all gone drinking, though I can't remember who the 'all' were at almost five year's remove. All I know is 5X was there, in the Corner Stone, and he was getting very chatty with the girl I keened for, back in that weather. Let's call her 'Gillian', for that is her name to this day.
They were getting very friendly and I was doing my best 'pretend not to give a shit but secretly die a little inside' impression. Whatever way my barren spell falls now, it was much worse back then. I was petrified of getting laid.
They talked, got closer, talked, got closer, kissed. "Fuck." Kissed. "The cunt," I thought, "the all powerful, all-confident, all consuming cunt," I thought.
I stropped out with too much beer taken, and he followed me out on to the stairs.
"I'm really sorry, man, look, it won't happen again."
"Go fuck yourself."
"Hit me, go on, it's grand. Hit me a dig. You'll feel better."
I fled home, pissed off, drunk, pissed off, drunk.
- - -
The next day came. Ireful fucking hangover but there was a match on the telly in County Lucan so we took to the beer, myself and Johnny and Owen. My phone rang, it was a Setanta number.
"Alright Radge, look man, sorry again for last night."
"Fuck it, it's ok. It's my own fault. I should have made a move ages ago."
I was, in fact, ok with it. Sobriety loaned me some perspective, these things happen, not worth falling out with a mate over.
That was all grand, I started drinking, all forgotten. Then a text from 5X.
'So now that everything's cool, can I have her number?'
I could only laugh at the audacity of the man. Pure fucking cheek.
'Get to fuck...' I responded, and he wrote back 'fair enough.'
Then I got to thinking. Then I got to thinking. He doesn't have Johnny's number. This could be... Yes... Brilliant.
About an hour later I texted him back, saying I was being childish, and he could have her number after all. It didn't take him five minutes before Johnny's phone beeped, him thinking he was on for the ride and wanting to set up a date.
For the following week Johnny would regale me with 5X's flirtings, all the while I'd go into work and ask the man himself for progress reports.
- - -
The 'date' was set for April 1st, by sheer coincidence. Johnny had erased his voice message and put Private Number on his phone, and it was all done in text. All coming together.
I walked along Townsend Street and made out 5X's strutting frame in the distance, all leather jacket and cocksuredness as he entered The Long Stone. All coming together.
I met Johnny to discuss tactics in MacTurcaills, a quick pint, then in.
We scoured the downstairs of the Long Stone and there was no sign of 5X.
We walked up the stairs, knowing our prey was about to get a right fucking land, this was going to be pure gold.
We appeared in front of him. He was reading the Herald. He looked at us, looked at his paper again, looked up and down, and said very very quietly, "I knew it was ye cunts. I knew it was ye cunts."
- - -
I got the man a pint, it was 1-1, he paid tribute to our cunning but as the pints turned to many, his calm diminished and diminished until it was no more.
He got as close to violence against me as was possible in Mahaffy's, we were jarred, but instead of my chin it was my phone that took the charge, hurled as it was to the ground in a fit of tumultuous pique.
"ALL I WANTED WAS MY FUCKIN' HOLE! YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND!"
I understood perfectly.