Sitting on a clinic tablebed, barefoot, for over an hour will certainly put manners on a man. It will lead to the most minimal of dementiae akin to a flotation chamber. I've never been in a flotation chamber, mind you, but The Simpsons did a pretty handy mock-up back in the year.
Just me, behind a curtain, waiting to get my paw-knack seen to amid all sorts of imaginings. Radge as a soldier in Iraq. Barefoot. Radge in Eddie Rockets, waiting on cheese fries. Barefoot. Radge getting rained on at Mass of all places. Barefoot.
Fuck all to look at, you see. Just that same white curtain, a skeleton picture and the growing need to go for a piss. Half an hour of listening to the nurses' footsteps going up and down and up, but never in to see me, had me reaching for my socks and my shoes and...
"Where are you off to?"
"I just need to use the bathroom..."
"Turn to the right, first door on your left. I'll be with you now in two minutes."
'Now in two minutes' actually meant thirty five minutes, I'd just given myself a Freddie Ljungberg haircut circa 2001, done my warm-up and was fixing to enter the fray at Wembley when the curtain opened and she walked in. Bernie, the doctor.
Doctors shouldn't be called Bernie. Professor Bernie, maybe, but never just Bernie.
She was nice. She had a good mosey around the gaping wound on my foot and told me I didn't need an x-ray. She had another look, calling her colleague in, and told me that no, I definitely didn't need an x-ray.
"Just bandage it up every day until Friday, and then go in to the Mater where they'll make sure it's ok."
The fucking Mater. I was only down there today, in Smithfield, so I wouldn't have to go near the North Circular Road and those that have shat themselves to within an inch of their lives, before going for a nice dip in the Canal.
The fucking Mater. Friday. I'll be bringing a book and an empty bladder.