Gravy Monster update

Gravy Monster update

It’s a bed he thought not the best bed but still a bed. First time he’d woke up in a bed in a long time. Granted the circumstances were far from ideal but it was a comfortable sleep. It definitely beats a cold cell and a thin blue jizz stained sleeping mat. Or, a kick from a drunken lout whilst lying on freezing cardboard, sleeping bag soaked in kebab and piss in a shop doorway.

He had a window, noticed no curtain rail for obvious reasons but the crisp autumn sun cracked the sullen darkness of the room and he returned his head to the pillow. His mouth and neck still raw from the piping hot gravy and beans he had lathered them in. A dressing and antiseptic cream treating the wound, again he thought it could be worse, it could always be worse. The room was neutral, hazard free and naked walls surrounded him. He was content. He couldn’t remember the last time he was content and well rested having eaten the previous day. Someone was definitely looking down on him, looking down on him favourably. Superman was a more realistic answer than god he thought.

There were voices down the hall outside his bedroom door, they sounded real. The door was about three metres from his bed, a wooden door, heavy duty with a circular strengthened window through which the nurses could see inside. As he listened to what sounded like the rattling of a trolley being driven down the narrow corridor he drifted off again.

When he woke the bed sheets were damp from his sweat, it had started. The cravings for the brown, the thoughts of how he ended up here started being clouded and swallowed by the thirst. He started fantasising about holding a cup of gravy granules, access to a kettle. Roast beef. Yorkshire puddings. Pie. Chips. All smothered in sweet sweet gravy. The transformation was underway, the calm figure snoozing solemnly under the white sheets. He was being replaced again. Nervous energy charged through his limbs like greyhounds released from their traps, a frenzy of activity in pursuit of the bunny. Could he put a muzzle on it? Could he bollocks. Swinging his feet out of the iron framed bed he made a line for the door in his pyjama bottoms and white t shirt, both two sizes too big for him.

He could smell burnt toast as he opened the door to the corridor and followed his nose. If there was going to be any gravy here it was going to be in the vicinity of the kitchen. As he approached the kitchen door he could see two shadows extinguishing themselves from the entrance. This was going to have to done the hard way and interact to some extent with others. Walking with the brisk staccato steps of someone carrying a piano he tried impossibly to peer through the walls as he approached the kitchen to count those that might stand between him and a tub of the brown stuff. He was threadbare physically but fearless and ready to fight to get his fix. His tracks suddenly stopped by a voice from behind him,

“Graham, slow down there’s plenty for everyone.”

He turned to see a psychiatric nurse smiling at him. He hadn’t heard his name in what felt like a decade.

“Who told you that?”

“What? Your name?”


“We got it from one of the police officers who brought you in last night.”

“Who knows me? Who warrit?”

“Try and stay calm you’re safe in here, the officer’s name was PC Fletcher he said he had met you before when you used to live in Doncaster town centre.”

“Never heard o’him sounds like a rate cock socket.”

“Would you like some breakfast? Some toast maybe?”

“Shove your toast up‘yer arse you daft slag, am after some gravy.”

With this reply he turned and continued on his mission. In the kitchen he wasn’t able to forage for the gravy. Instead the storage was through to a smaller room, where the food and cups of tea were being prepared, all visible through a small open window. The cupboard hole in the wall, separated the other patients all sat there solemnly, eating their toast and jam from the two ladies toasting and stirring. He approached the hole.

“Morning son, what can I get you? Nice cuppa?”

“I want gravy.”

“Can’t help you there love, you can have a cup of tea and some toast if you want though instead?”

He wasn’t to be deterred by the friendly nurses offer, instead of taking her up he climbed into an opening in the wall. The nurse a little alarmed but clearly not seeing this type of behaviour for the first time hit the mobile alarm all staff carried with them. Within thirty seconds two more nurses arrived at the locked door of the kitchen were let in. Graham meanwhile had picked up a blunt bread knife and began wielding it whilst screaming and demanding gravy from the two women in the kitchen. They were used to erratic behaviour but this was a new one for the two of them. As the first nurse opened the main door to the kitchen Graham had started ransacking the contents of two cupboards that were unlocked. As he was in full gravy mode two male nurses burst on to the scene to restore some order. The sun never sets on a psychiatric unit.

“Graham put the knife down; we don’t want to have to get the police involved do we?” Said Tom an avid Wednesday fan, the ink owl on his upper arm sneaking a peak at the latest trouble maker,

“Tell us where you keep it an’a will?” Implored Graham.

“Graham we don’t have any gravy, listen are you going to put the knife down?” With this second request Graham erupted.

“Me names Gravy you bastards!”

He had turned from the cupboard and was facing the two male nurses with the other two female nurses stood beside them – reinforcements. Graham crossed the line and lunged towards one of the female nurses and was quickly tackled and restrained face down on the kitchen floor. It hurts having your face pressed into a tiled floor.

What happened next was text book following a violent outburst. Graham was removed from the voluntary wing of the psychiatric hospital and rehoused in the newly built arm of the centre where those experiencing the more acute episodes resided temporarily. First he made a visit to the safe room with a complimentary injection into his leg to calm him down. What was in the syringe was anyone’s guess but considering he’d only been up an hour he dosed for a good 6 more laid on yet another blue plastic mat, sticky.

After stirring away from a rather pleasant dream he acclimatised to his surroundings. A nurse had to keep guard, monitoring movement and ensuring the patient didn’t swallow their tongue after receiving their latest cocktail of drugs. I guess the nursing equivalent of data entry. Graham stood up swaying a little, a 6 pint sway. He clocked the nurse straight away; she was young having only recently started at St Cath’s and Graham was the first person she had seen sedated, it made her feel a little uneasy but she was assured it was in their best interests.

“Nah then love, you gonna lerruz out am busting for a piss?”

“You’ll be out soon please try and be patient.”

“Patient, av bin in’ere all fucking day wi nowt to do am gonna piss me sen.”

“Graham there is a bottle in the corner if you need to go to the toilet, please use that.”

“Am not a fuckin animal, I wanna piss in a bog, lerruz out you stupid rug muncher!”

This wasn’t the first insult Emily had heard in her first three months, tame by comparison to most of them. The first time she received a tirade of abuse had her questioning her career choice but already her skin was thickening like a cooling pan of gravy. Her boyfriend was concerned when she mentioned she wanted to go into nursing specifically psychiatric nursing. To help others who had been through something similar to her sister. The nurses and doctors saved Frankie and she wanted to do something positive having nearly lost her to anorexia.

It didn’t mean he shouldn’t be concerned just because she had a good reason. He knew what an emotional and mental examination every shift was going to be working with the vulnerable, the catatonic, the schizophrenic, the manic and the psychotic. How does any person cope with that without being affected? Selfishly he didn’t want her to change; he fell in love with her when they met at university in Sheffield back in 2012. Version 1.0. He didn’t like the constant revisions.

He never voiced his concern at the pathetic remuneration package for all this personality re-aligning either. Instead he made her a cup of tea when she arrived back after her night shift on that Sunday morning, three hours late, no overtime. Yet another depressed patient had figured out how to get out without their consultants consent. The police statements, the questions the lack of sleep the heart wrenching image burned on to her conscience…another beautiful person hanging, lifeless. The thought of his mother finding out later that day just before she was due to come in and visit him made her feel sick. He listened. Tea wouldn’t do it. Nor would a 1% pay rise. Christ you could double her salary without making this worth it. He knew she was doing it for the right reasons but that didn’t change the fact that he was losing her one shift at a time.

“Graham please be patient, Dr Alikhan will be with you shortly.”

“Yeah I heard you, you daft cow. Please be patient waaa waaa waa. Am the gate keeper waaa waaa waa. Piss in me bottle waaa waaa waaa. Suck me tits Gravy waaa waaa waaa” He mimicked Emily making himself smile, she also struggled to keep a straight face as he continued his childish yet entertaining caged performance. The drugs had definitely worn off.

Graham calmed down and sat back on his mat on the floor. The door opened and in walked Dr Alikhan. His wait was over so was Dr Alikhan’s, a short stout Asian man with dark rings below his eyes. Emily thought either a keen drinking hobby or insomnia or both, she didn’t like him. He didn’t care, years of this had desensitised him. Made him unresponsive to the mental torture endured by many of his patients. He spoke briefly with Emily before cautiously opening the safe room and walking through the doorway before placing a NHS standard issue blue chair in front of Graham. Another nurse had joined Emily and they stood at the door.

“Hi Graham, I’m Dr Alikhan I need to ask you a few questions.”

“Fucksake av bin in ere all day can’t you just lerruz tek a piss?” Graham replied quickly.

“It will only take a couple of moments can you do that for me?”

“You’ve done well for your sen swimming over ere and that mekkin them believe youra quack but ur just a daft paki, now get out of me way am off for a piss.”

Graham stood up and started walking towards the door Emily and her colleague Ian stepped into the room. Graham stopped abruptly.

“Look you bunch of cunts a need a piss what dunt you get? Fine fuck yer!”

He turned away from the nurses with Dr Alikhan’s back to him on the sterile chair and quickly started to relieve himself on the worn suit jacket of the psychiatric consultant. Before long he realised what was going on and shot up out of his chair like he had been given a jab with a cattle prod. Disgusted. He walked towards the door and ushered the nurses out of the entrance and closed the door behind him. Graham continued to piss on the chair and screamed,

“Bring me some fucking brown an all you twats!”

Emily looked forward to her tea break and updating the rest of the overworked and underpaid.

Licence and registration

Licence and registration


As I sit impassively staring out of the window of Café Nero on my lunch, I find my mind wandering following a comprehensive tour of the news articles on my phone. I admit I gorged on The Guardian’s plate of reasonably written dishes, picked at a couple of the misguided morsels thrown up by the red tops and then I endured a nauseating five minutes, force feeding myself drivel from The Daily Mail. Bloody Piers Morgan at it again the scamp, he normally reduces women to tears with his clothes off. I’m not trying to be impartial; I’m simply trying to understand the other side of the coin. New Year’s resolution and all that.  It won’t last long, far too fucking hard.

Meryl Streep is over rated. Yes Donald, she would be to you without the capacity to appreciate someone with a discernible talent. No, this isn’t going to be another rant about Captain Fuckstick as he embarks on his maiden voyage at the helm of USS Oblivion. I am resisting the urge to berate him, instead my thoughts come as I observe my comrades going about their day hunting sausage rolls and gathering delights from Poundland.

Here we see the lesser spotted Donny Soldier rolling a cigarette after grazing on a sausage and bean bake. As he tightens the paper around the lush amber leaf notice the distinctive markings on his forearm. These are here to remind him of the name of his offspring, his date of birth and the bright coloration serves to attract the female of the species, he is man. He is virile. Or is that vile?

How are there so many people about? I know move with the times, not everyone has a 9 to 5. They might work nights. They might work a varied shift pattern. They might only work weekends. They might work in front of a webcam. Woof. I can’t get away from overwhelming urge to categorise. Post work. At work. Can’t work. Won’t work.

Post work. Fair, if they’re retired they’re killing time perusing the aisles of Doncaster’s high street stores, gets them out of the house I suppose.

At work. They are having an amble through town to get them away from their desk maybe a late or early lunch, also completely fair.

Brings me onto can’t work. They are physically unable to work because of an illness or disability. Tricky one this just because you can get out the house and go shopping doesn’t mean you are able to work. I mean in most cases you think it would but maybe they’re struggling with depression, anxiety, debilitating arthritis, chronic back pain or could it simply be a case of ergophobia? Don’t generalise, not everyone on disability benefit has a fear of work. No. But it has to be a proportion doesn’t it? I mean look at them all, smoking, vaping, supping a can of Monster, eating a steak bake and buying sales shit they don’t need on a weekday afternoon.

Finally we have the won’t work bunch. Ah if only it was a bunch. A bunch of bananas is what, five? This is a bloody epidemic by those proportions. These people don’t want to work, I know this. Why don’t they want to work? Are they starving? No, clearly not. Are they cold and exposed? Far from it, they have a delightful two up two down council house and a free bus pass. Would they rather spend their day in front of a TV than in a warehouse for a few more quid? Damn straight wouldn’t you? Are they skint? Well they have a smart phone; no doubt a reasonably sized flat screen TV, they’re donning a rather resplendent tracksuit and completing the look with a decent pair of Nike Air Huarache. Not skint then by their own admission.

Looking at the scene in front of me a little more objectively I think about the phrase that all men are created equal. I side with Charles Darwin on this one. Are they bollocks. There is no way I can believe that some of these fine specimens on parade, walking through Doncaster town centre were born with the same capabilities, intelligence, empathy or inherent talent for activities as some others earning their corn. Genetics is not a level playing field; they drew the short straw in this regard and because of this it is only right that they suckle at the teat of the nanny state. I’m not saying that we are all at the mercy of our genes. I mean it could be those behavioural problems spawned from neglect, abuse, an addict for a mother, the usual stuff. It’s not their fault, not entirely. They do though also have a choice and you’re not telling me they can’t hold down a job order picking down at the Range Warehouse. Plenty of Eastern European lads seem to be able to stomach it. Nah, they choose a can of Strongbow at midday on a Tuesday instead.

How do these unfortunates exist in society on no wage though? Seventy bones a week, pay your lecky, gas, visit Iceland, get your backi in and you’re surely spent. Happily relinquishing the will to work. But, how on earth have they got enough to venture in to town on a blustery Tuesday and spunk cash on a walkers multipack, some half price selection boxes and chips and gravy for lunch. Maybe not academic, but this breed of shirker is far from stupid. A simple visit to their soon to be privatised GP sees them spin a yarn and box off some additional income. A mandate to waste their weekday afternoon in the local Wetherspoons. ‘I’m struggling to sleep.’ ‘I don’t enjoy owt.’ ‘I can’t get out of bed in a morning.’ ‘I keep thinking about hurting me sen.’ Ding ding ding we have a winner. Their GP may smell a rat but they have to act on this information, they don’t want blood on their hands do they Mr Hunt. Prescription written, complimentary medication collected (nice one 7 zopiclone), sick note produced and disability claim processed. Kerching. Mine’s a pint of smooth . ‘We’re having chicken dippers toneet… round the kids up, just mine not yours Chelsie’.

“If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.”

They aren’t miserable Charles. Then there are the kids. Those poor bloody kids. Brought in to this world on the back of a night on the Rose and a few blue WKDs. Romance isn’t dead. Ninety times out of a hundred I suspect a convenient accident.

The last time our Smiggy had a meeting for his JSA claim they had found a job that they wanted to put him forward for but unfortunately he wasn’t eligible as he didn’t have a driving licence. The shift patterns included nights, he was unable to get there, no night bus. Not that it mattered because he didn’t want the job anyway. Our smiggy doesn’t get along with them Polaks do you pal? ‘No do I fuck, busy bastards lot of’em I’d rather sit around the house wanking.’

“A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.”

Typical Smiggy, dirty bugger. Now he could get a licence for a car but it would cost a small bloody fortune. He’d have to have lessons, learn the rules of the road, apply his learning practically, theoretically and pass a few tests and these aren’t cheap. This is a prerequisite to ensure that all of the vehicles on the public highways are driven safely and responsibly. Makes sense. You can’t have Smiggy and his bird belting through DTC on a Friday night in his mates classic Vauxhall Nova, keyed up to the nines supping from a bottle of Glens can you? No, bloody dangerous that. He needs to have a licence, cars can be lethal weapons. Can’t watch TV without a licence either, bloody licence for everything these days. No fishing and you’ll need one for that chuffing massive Stafi you’re after Smiggy love.

Begs the obvious question then, as I survey the alarmingly long queue at Crawshaw’s (cooked chickens for £3 in the afternoon #winning). How are these people allowed to bring another person into the world without as much as an assessment in front of a medical professional? I mean if some of the kids I can see on the high street were any more inbred they’d be a fucking sandwich. Not their fault.

Whoah what the hell is this? Inbred? You off your nut you can’t go dictating to people what hoops to jump through to have kids. Why the fuck not?

We have got to where we are today in evolutionary terms because as Darwin put it we are the most adaptable to change and we have survived famine and disease as well as countless other potential ends. We as a collective are the result of a distilled gene pool. We can’t simply cut off those with a low IQs or behavioural problems can we? No, we can’t that would be rather cruel. We can ensure the current gene pool isn’t being diluted further though and society isn’t perpetually supporting those who do nothing but withdraw. Take, take, take. It’s free money!

“One general law, leading to the advancement of all organic beings, namely, multiply, vary, let the strongest live and the weakest die.”

No Charles we can’t let them die, I’ve covered this. We feed them , clothe them, provide them with health care, house them and give them a few quid for a pint and some ciggies . We have varied enough in my opinion and I think we have struck up a political class capable of protecting the vulnerable, systematically being unpicked at present here on the Albion. Here’s to hoping that c*** Hunt will contract MRSA when he finally decides to visit a hospital ward sometime before the next election. Yes, more could be done and I hope this continues but can we not be a little more forward thinking about what genes we bring to the table for future generations and what environment children in society are brought up in?

I advocate a licence if people want to have children. There it is, I said it. potential parents take lessons to learn the essentials, what folic acid is, why smoking and drinking whilst pregnant is harmful, why changing your childs nappy more than once a day is good practice etc. They ascertain a basic understanding of the cost of clothing, food, they detail their income, discuss their personal life, relationships with people, alcohol and substances. Finally they have a psychological assessment if they satisfy those assessing them they are granted a licence. It would be long winded but let’s remember they are committing to providing for another person for a minimum of eighteen years. They have to ensure their children have a strong moral compass and  that they are educated – I’m not talking school here. If they can’t look after themselves properly they don’t procreate. Simple. Yes it would be expensive but would we not as a society realise the benefits in the longer term? I think we would. Might even offset what we spend on benefits in time and reduce the unemployment rate.

Is this really that left or right field? I mean only today Jezzer has proposed a tax rate of 100% on the highest earners in our society, Christ. Yes Jeremy you are right the pay disparity is perverse but you are not the person to be running with this, not now. You need to bolster your credibility first you donut. I’ll be leader of the opposition by Christmas with this forward thinking.

You’ve got to hand it to them existing, taking the piss, doing fuck all, playing the system or whatever you want to call it they know what they are doing. I do take issue with them diluting the gene pool and getting the state to fund their survival but what can one man do. Fucking scallies.

“Intelligence is based on how efficient a species became at doing the things they need to survive.” – Charles Darwin.