My day job as a librarian often involves visiting other libraries and arrogantly delivering a seminar to older, more seasoned librarians who undoubtedly know better.
It’s a living.
It’s not much different to my night job: standup comedy. The crux of both is to speak with confidence and the only real difference is one of defence mechanisms. In standup, the rather cowardly defence mechanism is to offend and ridicule your audience (the ultimate achievement probably being Simon Munnery getting his I AM TV audience to wear dunces’ caps while simultaneously filming them for a video release – it was like Abu Graib) whereas in these seminars it’s to be as charming as humanly possible. I’m waiting for the day I get the two confused and accidentally call a blue-haired old lady a “cunting, cunting, cunting, cunting cunt”.
I like being charming. Perhaps some sort of comedy seminar should be arranged. I’d have to adopt some sort of benevolent dictator role.
Today I had to deliver two seminars. In order to recuperate after the first event, I sprinted away from Edinburgh University Library at lunchtime in order to partake in that rare treat: an all-day vegetarian breakfast at the Babylon Cafe.
If the Babylon Cafe’s managers were more honest they would have called the place the Babylon Caff, for its main features are bolted-down chairs and plastic squeezy ketchup bottles with blocked nozzles.
It’s also the only cafe I can think of whose breakfasts include a substantial portion of chips.
There is also a mystery sausage. Each time I’ve been to the Babylon Cafe, I’ve eaten the sausage assuming it to be one of a vegetation variety. It’s exceptionally tasty though and I concerned that it might be a meat sausage after all; put there by the cook for personal entertainment value.
I intend to bring along a friend one day who is allergic to meat; generously donate to him my sausage and see whether he requires dialysis.
The problem I am now faced with is how the hell I’m going to perform again this afternoon. The eighth commandment, “Never eat anything bigger than your head” was mercifully flounced today and now I am sure to pay the price.
I had been in the Babylon Cafe for a full twenty minutes before my eyes were drawn to an arrangement of what could possibly be Christmas baubles upon the ceiling.
Disregarding them politely in the same way that you try to disregard a Bull Mastiff with ponderously apparent testicles, I noticed that garlands of plastic holly also adorned the walls.
Gah! The place was glowing with Christmas Radiation. If only I had the foresight to bring my patented Robert Wringham Handheld Festive Geiger Counter (TM).
It’s March. I’m not sure whether the staff of the cafe have been remiss in taking down their decorations or if they’re being terribly organised by getting them up early.