The Last Seanachie

The etiquette of sauces

It was the smell that registered first: bacon, food of the gods, the drunk ones that is. Ambrosia? No, thanks.Then the sizzle, the reassuring sizzle filtered its way through a dim pop song. Was it Blondie? The sizzle matched the cymbols.

Then the pain: shit, another hangover. And due to the frantic yelps from Brain Central it looks like it ‘s a bad one.

I didn’t bother opening an eye. Save that uncalled for brainache for a little while. I’ll just snuggle back into the carpet, I reasoned.

Except that my flat didn’t have carpet, I’d got laminate floor – too cheap to get solid wood and now an undulating ripple of bendy pine-style plastic covered my apartment’s floors.

And if I’m on the carpet. Who’s cooking bacon?

I prepare the boys in Brain Central for some motor function. It’s not going to be easy. Right eye takes point and flicks a lid open through some crusty sleep.

Nope, not my flat. The lads in Brain Central call on Johnny Adrenalin and limbs are deployed. I simulate what approximates to a leap from the floor but an unfamiliar chair thwarts my progress. Ouch, an eager lump makes its way towards my forehead; wood beats flesh in the mock rock-paper-scissors.
bacon butty

‘Easy now, soldier,’ rasps a voice. ‘You drink fiercely.’ I let my neck move the heavy throbbing head over to the source, some old guy, some familiar old guy. I send the lads in Brain Central off to the memory bank to make a withdrawal.

‘Oh, it’s you…er…yerself…erm,’ I venture, realising I’ve been the classic drunk. Mates with everyone, friends with no one. ‘You’re the guy, the man with the…’

He waves me down, proffers a plate.

‘Daddy’s or HP?’

‘Who?’ The lads haven’t enough neurons on board yet.

‘Sauce. What sauce ye want?’ comes the voice.

‘Got any ketchup?’

‘No, that’s a sin.’ He says, sounding serious.

‘Sin?’ I want to eat it, not shag it…where’s the tommy nod?’ I’m getting impatient, the emotions are making the most of Brain Central’s understaffing problem at the moment. Besides, the bacon sarnie is probably the best sarnie I’ve smelt in a long time.

‘Only brown for bacon,’ the bacon teaser stresses. ‘Red is for chips, sometimes sausages, but only in rolls. No, bacon takes brown,’ he concludes firmly. Two plates clunk heavily, on what, I assume, is a table. My eyes are shut again, and I’m in agony. ‘Look,’ I pant, ‘it’s not a fuckin’ fine wine. It’s a bleedin’ buttie. Who gives a monkey’s?’ There’s a muffled response, a smacking of lips. And was that a slurp? Of tea?

‘It’s getting….’ Chewing…’..cold. You’d better..’ Slurp. ‘Get your arse of the fecking floor,’ Gulp. I swear I hear a smacking of lips.

While the lads at Brain Central are still working out where the fuck I am, the grunts in the Engine Room, my stomach, have decided they’ve had enough. They’re mounting a rebellion. A couple of them send runners to my legs, while a few sneaky ninjas send word out to my arms to get that sarnie and bring it home. Their most cunning and convincing agent commandeers an eyeball: we’re moving, the plate hoves into view and I’m munching on autopilot.

No drink slakes a thirst like a steaming mug of tea. No food sates the stomach like a bacon buttie. Banned by two world religions, shunned by the vegetarian rest. Billions have lived and died without experiencing the regenerative power of a cuppa and a buttie. I am reborn. Even if there is HP sauce on it.


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