Putrid Modern Hell #14

by HST UK on July 17, 2011

At War with the Veterans

I’d like to tell you about three recent incidents I’ve had with ex-servicemen. In each case all of the three men I encountered were aged in their seventies, and all appear to have served in the Royal Air Force. I deduce this from the navy blue blazers they wore with a golden wing emblem on the front pocket.

I think it’s worth revealing my stance on the Military before I go any further. I respect anyone who decides to serve in the Army, Navy or the Air Force simply because they are risking their lives, and are incredibly brave for doing so. Though I might not always agree with the conflicts that the British Armed Forces are currently involved in, I hope for the sake of the friends and families of those who serve that they get home from their tour free of physical and psychological wounds.

However I have a problem with veterans who abuse the goodwill that the Armed Forces currently receive from the Great British public. These veterans will be sure to inform you about how great they are because they once spent some time in the Armed Forces. Some of these cats never saw battle; the only thing they were at risk of was picking up dysentery from the latrine back home in the barracks.

The first incident happened late last year. I was coming up to the end of my shift at work, waiting for the sand to trickle down the hour glass. I noticed a man wearing a navy blue blazer with a golden winged emblem, khaki slacks and Reebok Classic Trainers; he carried a large white carrier bag with a faded red label on the front. I was stood near the checkouts at the time looking down the Wine and Spirits aisle of the Department Store’s Food Hall. I watched the man pick up a big black bottle of port and stick it straight into the carrier bag. I could clearly see the bottle through the bag.

Walking with a sudden spring in his step the man headed straight to the exit. I cut the man off at the steps that lead to the double doors and asked him about the bottle in the white carrier bag. At first he tried to ignore me and attempted to get by. I blocked his path, and again asked about the bottle. He sighed, and slowly reached in took the black bottle of port out of the carrier bag and handed it over to me.

Then the man said “I spent fifteen years in the RAF, and you have the gall to confront me. Listen I could eat a kid like you for breakfast”. I nodded, and interrupted him. Look mate, I said. I think it’s time that you left. I’m letting you go; you go on your way and don’t try doing this again. I could have waited for him to leave with the bottle, had him arrested, but it was nearly home time and I didn’t want to stay behind and finish the paperwork. At the end of the day my primary role as a Uniformed Retail Security Guard is to deter, and deter is what I did. The man flicked a ‘v sign’ at me as he looked back.

The next incident happened a couple of months back; involving a curious looking cad, with a striking moustache, his oil black hair was intricately combed over like Donald Trump. The man stumbled into the store, hobbling along on two solid oak walking sticks with silver topped handles. He pulled a whiskey flask from his navy blazer and took a few solid swigs. He then stopped and cheekily winked at each lady that passed by, offering some slurred compliments to the skirt.

He walked through the store at a Tortoise pace, and began to stagger; a little to the left, and a little to the right. He was like a latter day Lou Bega, this was his sixth Mambo and he was only just getting started. I made my presence known, and the man tipped an imaginary hat to me. What a gentleman, I thought. He said to me “Excuse me… Sss…sirrrrrr. Where iss… is the brandy?” Brandy, I proclaimed. You won’t get any brandy from here. Something attracted my attention to his feet. I looked down and noticed he was wearing one striped canvas slipper and one black shoe. “Sirrrrrrr, you… you are a cunt” he said. Then he left.

The final incident happened a few days ago. I was minding my own business standing across the corridor from the customer toilets. I was waiting for an alcoholic cat faced woman to come out. This woman usually buys a bottle of wine and a magazine. Then she makes her way over to the customer toilets, taking around forty five minutes to finish off the bottle in the comfort of a cramped cubicle. She then staggers out of the toilet with a warped smile on her face.

I stood outside innocently waiting and this grey haired man with horn-rimmed glasses, around five foot seven inches tall, wearing a navy blazer with a golden winged emblem on the breast pocket, came up to me. He looked me up and down, and turned his nose up. Literally. “You don’t like people like me. Do you?” he said. I was a little nonplussed. He continued “You don’t like men from the Armed Forces. Do you?”. I shrugged and chuckled a little. “You’re a civilian. Nothing but a civilian” he shouted. Yes sir, yes I am. I replied. He then huffed away. I turned around and noticed him speaking to a member of staff. He pointed across at me and all I could make out him saying was the word ‘Dickhead’.

Not sure what that was all about.

Maybe I’ve been unlucky. Met the wrong people under strange circumstances, it seems odd that these three men, all of the same generation of servicemen are bastards. One of them, the cad, he was an endearing bastard. But the other two seemed pathetic, lonely men living off the memory of their glory days. Those days are gone my friends. Those days are gone.

-RJW

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