Wednesday, 16 May 2012
I've Been Meaning To Say...
There comes a time in a lot of relationships when it just feels right to say those four little words that you've been dying to say for ages. It's nerve wracking of course. What if you say it and it puts that person right off you? What if those are the exact four little words that they never wanted hear? Well, not from you anyway. Is it too soon to say it? Is it too late? The fact is, if you've built a bond with someone and this incredible feeling is growing inside you, then just let it out. It might be the best thing you'll ever do. Go on. Say it. It's only four little words and you've been dying to whisper them for ages. Say it. "I love you. But..."
It's weird how often that last word is silent but really every single time you say "I love you" you're really saying "I love you. But..." because no one is perfect. You actually can never completely love someone.
"I love you". Really? You love my psoriasis and my foot lump and my grumpiness and my Sugababes CD's and my irrational hatred of people I don't know? Well, you're weird. How can I possibly ever love anyone who loves things like that. Fuck off.
That is definitely what you should say next time someone says "I love you" to you. If there's no "But..." at the end it's meaningless. Insulting, even. Don't be depressed about the fact that you can never completely love someone. There's something you can do to make yourself feel better. It just means that you have to say "But..." and the end of I love you. Which brings me to what I really want to talk about. I've been in a relationship for a very, very long time and I've yet to say those four little words. I've said three of them but that's just not right. So, after all this time of being together I think I'm ready to finally say it. England, I love you but...could you please stop pissing in the street?
I was raised on English culture and it has had a far stronger effect on me than Irish culture ever has. Monty Python, The Young Ones, Fry & Laurie, Blackadder...that's pretty much my youth right there. I liked England so much that I moved there. The English are insane and funny and who couldn't love that? It's just there's not a day goes by when I don't see someone pissing in the street. I think it's bizarre that generally the stereotype is that Scottish and Irish people drink a lot. Where I'm from you drink on a Friday and Saturday night. There isn't an hour of the day when the English aren't drinking. It's constant. There is no such thing as a quiet pub in London. They are full from 11am until midnight. The Irish and the Scots have the reputation for being hardened drinkers but we all secretly know that any old lady from Kent could drink us under the table. And that's fine. I just don't see why you have to prove how much you've had by pissing in the street.
People from Northern Ireland, where I'm from, piss in the street. They do. But you know what? You might go a week or two without seeing it. Not in England. The home of Shakespeare and Morrissey is awash with it's proud stream of urine that twists and turns round every street in the land. I've seen people pissing in phoneboxes in Chester, bus stops in Nottingham and just anywhere they fucking feel like in Liverpool. There isn't a shop doorway in Lewisham that I haven't seen some cheeky scamp getting his penis out and releasing his majestic cascade of golden relief. Napoleon was so close to getting it right. I think what he meant was "England is a nation of shopkeepers who are permanently cleaning piss off their doorstep". As horrible as late night train journeys are I actually dread getting off at my destination. Men get off the train, cocks out, pissing on the trees beside the platform. YOU HAVE YOUR COCKS OUT IN PUBLIC. YOU ARE URINATING IN THE STREET. I CAN SEE YOU. It might not be so bad but THERE ARE TOILETS ON THE TRAIN. I once saw a man in the park pissing up against the public lavatory. You English fucking love pissing.
I've noticed this for years. Maybe once ruling the world and giving birth to The Beatles and winning a World Cup has given you the kind of confidence that I could never have or understand but just last week I met a man who's assurance and faith in himself could make God feel like Andrew McCarthy. I was walking Jerk in the park when he said to me "Excuse me, please". I was impressed already. It's rare that you get proper manners in Lewisham so the very fact that he addressed me correctly made me warm to the gentleman immediately. "Can you tell me where the hospital is?", he continued. I did know where the hospital was. It was just down this path to the man's right and when you come to the small bridge on the left, cross it and the hospital is right in front of you. "Thank you", he said. Lovely manners except for one tiny thing. Throughout this entire exchange the gentleman was pissing on some railings.
HE WAS PISSING ON RAILINGS. He asked a stranger for directions while PISSING ON RAILINGS. Then he smiled and said "I'm visiting my mum". He smiled, proved what a good son he was and he PISSED ON RAILINGS. Look, England, I don't want you to ever lose that confidence. "So what if the world is watching? This is who I really am". That's so amazing to have that amount of self belief. But come on, guys. It's the street where we all walk and live and get on with things. You have a really nice place here. Don't make it all damp and smelly. I love you but sometimes you really do take the...Oh, forget it.
If you like being embarrassed as much as I do or just want to point and laugh at my many embarrassing moments then why not go to Michael Legge's Private Hell on the 3rd June with guests Richard Herring, Catie Wilkins and Dab & Tench or on the 1st July with Nick Helm and Bridget Christie? Shows start at 3pm at The Phoenix, Cavendish Square, London (nearest tube Oxford Circus) and it costs an unbelievable £5.
Or you can get more Legge embarrassment at the Edinburgh Fringe. I'm very proud and happy to say that my show, Michael Legge: What a Shame, is on nearly every day of the fringe at the fantastic Stand Comedy Club. Here's info: http://www.edfringe.com/whats-on/comedy/michael-legge-what-a-shame
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