I'm not really into eating massive amounts of chocolate but this blogpost is about just that- chocolate. I suppose if I wanted to make some tenuous link between the brown sickly stuff and running (to justify the name of this blog, don'cha know) I could tell you that Colin Jackson used to chow down on a fuck-off big bar of the stuff just before a race.
Anyway, that's enough about running, hurdling and Welsh people.....back to the issue in hand. So a few weeks ago I was asked to attend a Wandsworth Borough Community Awards event. Let's get this right, I was asked only after all the preferred individuals had knocked it back. Imagine the Queen getting the cold shoulder from everyone invited to her garden party and ending up inviting Gary Glitter.....it's kinda that vibe but without any connection between me and the shoulder pad wearing, bouffant headed sicko.
So I agree to go....a three course meal with complimentary wine, it's a no-brainer if you ask me. Then I'm asked to recommend a local community champion for an award , again, a no-brainer. I know a fella that's kept the local community kebab shops and off licences in business despite a crippling recession, surely a community champion. But that fella will be quaffing complimentary wine and scoffing a three course meal on the same night as the awards, so I'd best recommend someone else.
Of course! My oppo, Vince who I run the local youth boxing programme with. So I recommend him and guess what? He wins!
Of course I win too. Not necessarily because we're a partnership and he takes the award for the both of us....more because I've encouraged the wine waiter to properly fill my glass rather than those ridiculous quarter-filled measures.
Anyway, a local dignitary hears of Vince's success but is concerned that Yours Truly hasn't been suitably recognised. If he'd seen the recycling bin the next day he might have thought otherwise nevertheless, I'm summoned to said local dignitary's office. The guy is a lovely fella and camper than Larry Grayson on his way to a Liberace concert but he hands me this package and says:
'This is for you. Thank you for all your hard work in the community.'
I'm holding this beautiful pyramid shaped box; it's coloured in gold and brown and tied up in a bow.
'Thank you, but what is it?' I ask.
'Chocolates.' I'm informed.
I thank him kindly, we exchange Christmas cards and I'm out the door, hotfooting it down the road with a box of fucking chocolates.
Chocolates. Never been given those before. Beer? Yes; Wine? yes; Whisky? Yes; Chocolate? No.
Chocolates. They're the default present that you buy your aunt because you don't really know her at all.
I get back home and decide that I need to Google said chocolates to ensure they're not gonna play havoc with my lactose intolerance. Google tells me these chocolates cost £120.00 a box.
Yes, I said £120.00 a box.
|Fucking expensive chocs|
Although I don't dare open these chocolates because I've promised to share them, dying to see what a £120.00 chocolate tastes like. So as we enter the run up to Christmas I make do with my normal wine and kebabs.
So I'm in the kebab shop tonight..... normal large chicken doner with extra chilli sauce. The chef (!) is cooking my kebab and I'm leaning on a table reading a two-day old copy of The Sun. As I'm reading a story about a guy whose wife has run off with his dad I hear the words:
'You wanna the salad, yes?'
I sigh, and without looking up from the newspaper answer, as I do every time:
'Lettuce, cabbage, and don't be shy with the chilli sauce.'
I close the newspaper without finishing the article and fish £5.60 out of my pocket. I hand it to the guy behind the jump and he says:
'This for you, best customer. Merry Christmas.'
And I'm handed a box of Thornton's chocolates. I'm quite choked. I stammer a thank you and walk out of the place with yet another box of chocolates.
I've got more chocolate than that which is hidden behind the jumpers in Vanessa Feltz's wardrobe.
The one thing I'm left wondering is that if you're a well known chocolate chomping community volunteer, or if you consume an inordinate amount of chocolate from the local chocolate shop, do they give you wine as a reward?