Wednesday, 19 April 2017

THE DIARY OF A JOBSWORTH.




 The names in this story have been changed to protect the innocent and not so innocent; although everyone has met someone like Cedric at some time, this story is a work of fiction. However, if by any chance, you recognise yourself in this story and you are annoyed, don't get annoyed, hang your head in shame and don't complain; as you would be better off keeping quiet.

This is the diary of Cedric -Jobs Worth- Pollock; Well, some of the words are his. However, He retired and left his diary in his locker.

 My name is Jack Star, I worked with Cedric in the Car Park Attendant and Security Department of the local Authority of Cods-Haven on the East coast of England. When I read his diary, it brought back a lot of memories; so, I have filled in the gaps,

Cedric's favourite saying was “I can't do that; It is more than my jobs worth” hence his nickname -Jobs Worth-.

Cedric's first entry,

"January 16th AM.

See Mr Edwin in his office. He seems unusually happy this morning and says he has some good news for me.

I remember this day when Rolly Poly Edwin the council car parks manager called his equally chubby; but one foot shorter- van driver Cedric into his office for a weekly report on the running of the car parks; And whatever the terrible trio were doing; that is what our manager called me and my two work mates.
 I was known as One Eyed Jack Star; I lost my eye in an accident on a trawler, my pals were Peg Leg Billy Buffam; he fell down a sewer whilst working on the Highways department, broke his leg and gangrene set in, and the third member of our trio was Red Robbie McDowell; Bad back, our shop steward. As well as being a jobsworth Cedric was of a nervous disposition, so he didn’t have enough confidence during other job interviews. But Rolly spotted this flaw in his character and as he was such a devious man he employed him as his right -hand man and used his nervy personality for his own ends.
 Mister Edwin was in a good mood that day and we were all worried as good moods for Rolly usually meant bad news for us three.
He had impressed his superiors by keeping costs down, having run the car parks on a shoestring for years. He confided to his spy,
I have interviewed two new men this week, not sick, lame, and lazy men! I have finally convinced this Namby-Pamby politically correct council that we could do with keen men; because I have kept running costs down and put car-parking fees up. We need men who are interested in this job. We can no longer employ disabled men alone, we need men who want the job; not, men who have been given the job because they are not fit enough to do anything else.
We are issuing uniforms and radios so that the public know that they are council officers, the uniforms are Lime green…’ he paused for impact, ‘Lime green? I ask you?’ He neglected to mention that he had bought the material in a job lot as the tailor had a problem selling it; the latter had bought them as a job lot in the 1960s, just as lime green draped Teddy Boy jackets with black velvet collars were going out of fashion.
When they skive off to the Bag O’Rats public house, they will stand out like witches in the Vatican! Can you imagine it? A disgruntled motorist going into the pub after he has received a ticket for not paying his parking fee, then he spots a uniformed attendant drinking in the bar? He will be straight on the blower to this office, and then we can call them up on their radios, and catch them as they leave The Bag 'O' Rats like rats leaving a ship; Good pun that, hey Pollock?'
'Yes Sir.'
If we catch them leaving the pub, we can sack them for drinking whilst at work. We will get them on a disciplinary charge; we may catch that Scottish heathen too; let us see how he talks himself out of that one.’
Yes SIR,’
Cedric answered, putting emphasis on the word sir, in the knowledge that his master enjoyed someone giving him the respect that he believed his station in life warranted. After savouring the look of appreciation on the manager’s face. The manager watched his, worried face, he knew that the jittery right-hand man wanted to add a question but daren’t, if a pin had been dropped in the silent office it would have been audible, so, Jobs Worth decided to take a chance and break the silence; in his usual ingratiating hand ringing demeanour.
‘I hope you don’t mind me saying sir, but, the only problem with the plan is that they hardly ever book anyone.’
The manager’s chubby face lit up with delight.
Aha!’
He said excitedly. Cedric had not seen his master so excited. The manager went on,
I have convinced the councillors that this job needs dedicated men. There are two of them, very keen men, they answered every single interview question correctly; even the one about issuing excess charges to their relatives! This pair would take their Grannies to court.’
‘Sir, Lime green?’ Cedric asked when it suddenly dawned on him that he would have to wear the uniform.
Ah, well, yes…Erm, I was coming to that. Your uniform, well yes; although, it will have chevrons on it to depict your seniority. I managed to get more money from the council to add the extra needlework; I am promoting you to inspector of car parks. You will also have a steering wheel insignia on your arm because you get extra money for having a driving licence; And, more good news! We are also taking over the security departments duties; as the Councillors have decided to make the present crew redundant due to Council cuts. They were a lazy lot anyway, we need men like our two new lads and a man of your calibre Pollock.’
The manager spoke with a look of false admiration towards his whipping boy. His expression changed quickly to one of astonishment when Cedric asked,
Will I be awarded another pay rise for the promotion sir? And then there's the security work! We will be working night shifts on Security!’
The manager had unwittingly instilled a bit of courage into him with the “man of your calibre” remark.
You sound like McDowell now Pollock… I’ve already splashed out on uniforms and extra tailoring for your tunic; This is a cost cutting exercise Both you and I know how the council are struggling to find money to run the borough… We do not want them putting the Security Department; not to mention our Car Parks out to private tender; Do we?’
Well I suppose not sir.’
Cedric answered sadly.
There you go that’s more the Pollock I know. Of course, you will be my right-hand man, my ears and eyes. Someday... ' the manager paused, for impact, his beady eyes staring into Tims eyes.. 'who knows? As you will have assisted the council to get back into the black financially, I will be in a better position to assist your claim for an increase in your salary.’
 Cedric felt better. He did have a lime green suit at home; one that Madeleine Pollock liked to see him in, she had bought it for him to wear at a relatives wedding. However, he had not worn it since, because someone said it clashed with the mother of the bride’s outfit. The news of his promotion would please Madeleine too; much preferable news than having to risk her infuriated reaction to his arriving home with the news that he had been made redundant; when he was made redundant from the fish factory because he feared the machinery. She flew into a temper and chased him out the house with a frying pan; that was after he had left the house at the same time every morning for a month to make her believe he was still in work; therefore, he was very grateful to Rolly for giving him a chance.
'Inspector of car parks, what a grand title. Chevrons too. Moreover, a steering wheel emblem’, he told Madeleine when he went home for his half hour dinner break.
 Indeed, the Car Park Manager knew how to exploit his van driver, ticket machine filler, litter picker, spy, and now Security officer; plus, whatever else he could add to his most enthusiastic employee’s job list.


January 16th PM. I am looking forward to my day today. Inspector of Car parks? Wait whilst I tell those three, they'll be green with envy.

 Cedric did tell us everything that Rolly had told him, as he couldn’t wait; we were not green with envy though, but, we were worried about the lime green uniforms. However, we found the new radio's handy and listened in to some interesting conversations. We had been given the radio’s that the redundant security men had used. The keenest of their team had been offered a place on the carparks team but declined; they would rather take redundancy and risk unemployment than run the gauntlet of irate motorists and lose their friends outside work once it was known that they were carpark attendants; especially when they heard about the lime green uniforms.
 Cedric drove along Station Road with his new radio blaring out so that passers-by could hear it.
‘Charley Papa India calling, are you receiving me Charley Papa Mike…? Err, over; Sorry sir I almost forgot the over bit.’
Charley Papa Mike receiving you…What is it this time? Over’
The exasperated Car Park Manager answered his van driver for the twentieth time that morning. Cedric had reported in on everything he saw or did. He noticed the frustration in his manager’s voice.
I am so sorry sir. Have I caught you at a busy time? Only I can’t see what you are doing over the radio… I do apologise. Over’
What do you want?’ Rolly asked irritably.
Charley Papa India to Charley Papa Mike. I have seen one of the targets heading towards the Bag O’ Rats. Shall I drive around the block and check if he goes onto the car park to check for tickets or if he passes the car park to go for a drink in the pub? Err…Over; there I go again sir; memory like a sieve, sorry almost forgot the procedure again.’
Do as you like. Use your initiative man, and do not bother me again. If you cannot remember the procedure now after all these calls, you never will… Your call sign is India Charley Papa by the way, Inspector of Car Parks? Not Car Park Inspector; And, don't you realise that everything you say on the radio is overheard by anyone else with a radio; including "THE TARGET! As you call him ; use your initiative…’
Before Rolly could sign off a disgruntled road worker cut in ‘Both of you get off the line, some people have proper jobs to do, I need to get in touch with the borough engineer!’
Rolly was not going to let anyone from the highways department speak to him like that,
Do you know who I am?’ He asked haughtily. The worker answered his question with another query,
More to the point, do you know who I am?’
No, who are you? I will report you,’ Rolly answered.
Well in that case, fuck off you moron!’ The worker retorted to a backdrop of laughter.
A female voice interrupted,
No foul language over the airways please!’
She exclaimed, furiously. The worker and his colleagues answered with cockerel imitations and shouts of, ‘Fowl! Fowl! I'm the Cock o' the North, I’ll feather your nest chick, you all right ducky?’
 Cedric had seen Peg leg Billy hobbling along the road, enjoying the early -unseasonal spring like - sunshine. Billy had seen the snitch too so he hobbled onto the car park, found a car without a ticket and loitered about hoping that the owner of the car would return and drive away, saving him the hassle of having to give him an excess charge for not paying. He hated having altercations with irate motorists who loathed having to pay car parking fees and took it out on the attendants who had to enforce the rules.
Me and Red Robbie were still laughing when Cedric started to gabble excitably over the radio.
 An unmarked police car cruised along Sea Road, driven by Detective Constable Chumney with Detective Sergeant Philpot in the front passenger seat. The Detective Sergeant saw what he thought was a scruffy looking bearded tramp dressed in dirty jeans, a woolly hat and donkey jacket peering into car windows on the council car park. The sergeant told his driver to pull up. He ran across the road, grabbed Billy’s right hand, twisted it and forced it up his back.
I haven’t ticketed your car!’
Billy squawked in pain. The sergeant had been recently transferred in from another force. He surmised that ticketing cars was a local aphorism for breaking into cars.
No but you were about to. You didn’t think that an undercover police officer would be watching you though.’ The sergeant said as he applied additional pressure to Billy’s arm.
What do you mean an undercover…’ Billy winced as the bullying sergeant applied more unnecessary pressure,
I am only doing my job. I didn't know it was a police car!’
It was now the sergeants turn to be confused. He glanced back at the car where a fee-dodging couple were furtively entering their vehicle before driving rapidly away from the car park. Whilst Billy thought to himself, “Even the police hate us; they are watching us secretly with undercover officers”.
Cedric had driven around the block. As he came back into Sea Road he saw what was happening and could not resist getting back on the radio,
India Charlie Papa to Mike Charlie Papa!’ He yelled, his hands shook with excitement and enthusiasm, he dropped the mike into the foot well of the van. The manager sighed, looked at his secretary -Miss Tidwell- who fidgeted nervously before going back to her typing.
Cedric recovered the mike but his manager had not answered. He decided to forego protocol,
Sir, sir, Peg-leg is fighting with a member of the public!’
It had the desired result,
What? Is he drunk?’
I don’t know.’
Well bloody get over there and find out!’
No swearing on the airwaves!’ The female voice retorted.
Go away woman; Is that all you do all day? Listen in to the radio for swear words. No matter how minor?’
Decent people do not like listening to bad language sir.’
Oh fu-hu-Go away! Are you there Pollock?’
A breathless Cedric ran back to his van; relieved that he didn't have to get too close to the feud; having heard his master’s voice mention his name. However, when he got back to the van he was shaking so much with excitement that every time he attempted to press the button the female voice demanded that Rolly gave his name or she would cut him off from the airwaves.
Roland Edwin, now allow me to speak to my driver.’
Roland Edwin what?’
Roland Edwin is my name, Madam; Is that what you want me to add?’
Department?’
CAR PARKS!’ The manager shouted in frustration.
 By the time, he had finished arguing with the lady from control, Billy had been frogmarched to the Police car.
'Sir, sir! They have frogmarched Buffam across the car park and are bundling him into a car; they must be kidnapping him!' Cedric yelled.
The Lady in the radio control centre went quiet; as did everyone else on the airways; this was more interesting than anything else in their humdrum days’ work.
Rolly took the chance to speak to his driver,
'Don’t be stupid man,' he said, 'who in their right mind would pay a ransom for him. Maybe he has gotten himself into trouble with some of those unsavoury characters in the Bag ‘O’ Rats. See if you can find the other two, I am calling a meeting tomorrow 11am sharp at my office. It will be about the new uniforms. In addition, we will be introducing our new colleagues; With a bit of luck, we won’t see Buffam again, so, we may have gotten rid of one waster and I will be able to get another good man.'



January 17thAM

Me and the new men are getting kitted out with our new uniforms today as Mister Edwin is upset that one of his team was taken for a tramp yesterday and arrested by the police. as the Boss says, very unprofessional. I will be meeting my new colleagues too.

 Rolly sat at his desk waiting to brief his troops; - us-. His secretary (Miss Tidwell) is at her desk, waiting to take down the minutes of the meeting. We shuffle in; concerned as to the reason for the meeting. We stand in line along the office wall, opposite Rolly’s desk. Two strangers marched in and stood to attention beside us. they are dressed resplendently in lime green uniforms, with silver buttons and white plaited lanyards on their shoulders. Cedric strutted in behind them, proudly wearing his new uniform complete with the steering wheel insignia on his upper arms, thick gold lanyard on his left shoulder, and three gold chevrons covered the entire length of his sleeves; like those on the uniforms of American cavalry men in old John Wayne films. All three uniformed men had a white and lime green peeked cap tucked under their arm, with “CAR PARKS & SECURITY” written across the front. Me, Billy and Robbie eyed the two strangers up suspiciously, and we watched Cedric with amusement.
I said, 'I didn’t know the Russian Navy were in dock.'
Miss Tidwell gave an involuntarily giggle and tried to stifle it with the back of her hand. Rolly shot a disproving glance at her, and stared back at Me,
Now then Star, less of that, I have called you all in her on serious business.'
Robbie couldn’t resist saying,
'Well if you want us to be serious why bring the clowns in?'
Rolly ignored him. Miss Tidwell spluttered with another involuntary giggle. Rolly glared at her again. He turned back to us.
'Right, let us have some silence,' he said, 'First, I have a grave matter to mention. The person will know whom I am talking about, so I won’t mention any names.'
He addresses his words directly to Billy by looking straight at him,
'Fighting on the job is against the rules of the council; especially fighting with the local constabulary. If I had not told the police that a certain car park attendant was a council officer they would have locked him up and thrown away the key. This brings us to the other matter. The fore mentioned car park attendant; I use the police officer’s words, “was mistaken for a tramp”, so the officers arrested him with the suspicion that he could be stealing from cars, as you can see, I have decided to kit you all out with uniforms to avoid any future misunderstandings.’
Me, Robbie and Billy, looked at the manager, astonished.
Billy blurted out,
'Bloody! Err, sorry Miss Tidwell.'
Miss Tidwell smiled. Rolly glared at her and then he glared more furiously at Billy.
I was astonished at the gaudiness of the uniforms, No way!' I protested, 'Am I going to wear that rig-out.'
And Robbie yelled in his guttural accent,
' Me neither; You cannot make us all walk around in a bright green suit; we will be a laughing stock, if you dress us up like tin soldiers to suit your fancy!'
Rolly leant back in his leather upholstered chair with a smirk on his slug like lips, he said,
'As the shop steward and safety officer, you should be happy that the suits are that colour, if they were navy blue or black you would not be so visible to motorists when they speed around the car parks; Star learnt what it is like to receive a blow to the elbow by a car, when he didn’t see it approaching on his blind side; he had six months off work with a broken elbow; and that is another thing, we can’t afford to have men off sick whilst motorists are dodging car park fees. Another addition to your equipment, as you already know, them having been passed on to us from the redundant security department, will be radio’s, so that you can get in touch with the office at any time, for example, in the event of threats from motorists, then we can get someone to you. In addition, we are also taking over the security department’s work, as the council have decided to disband them to save money; to apply the Governments cuts. Therefore, we are now in charge of the CCTV videos...’ Robbie yelled back, 'There are such things as vis-jackets!'
Rolly was enjoying himself now, he liked to rile Robbie, '…Well you will have vis-uniforms,' he said in a sarcastic tone.
Rolly, Cedric and the two new men tittered at his quip. Miss Tidwell, Billy, Me, and Robbie didn't, we were all stunned.
Robbie stuttered and ranted until neither of us could hardly understand his rapid guttural Glaswegian burr,  'Aye your right we will stand out. The public take the piss out of us enough; you may as well put "kick my arse" on our backs. Moreover, as for radio’s, you will use them to check up on our whereabouts. And, why the hell do you need a camera in our restroom? There are such things as privacy laws; it stinks; you never did trust us; And we know who you are talking about, Brother Buffam told us that he was roughed up by two police officers who arrested him for doing his job; and it was the Chief Constable who told them to let him go because they had nothing to charge him with, you had nothing to do with it...'
Rolly  interrupted and turned to Cedric, ‘What did he say?'
'I’m not sure Sir.' Cedric answered; although he had worked out the gist of it.
Robbie ranted, '…You heard me ye wee tyrant, that grovelling midden is probably thinking its more than his jobs worth to repeat my words. If the truths known, ye probably sent those police to arrest Billy. It is more than coincidental that they attempted to arrest him the day before you bring these stupid uniforms out!'
 Rolly stretched his legs out beneath his desk sucked on his tongue, lying back leisurely in his chair, he fiddled with his pen and said, 'Well I think I have the gist of your rant now, and, I have noted your complaint; complaints, along with all the others. However, it does not matter how we try to improve the running of the car parks you will always have something to moan about. Now, to my other reason for calling you all together. I would like to introduce you to your new colleagues.'
Rolly waves both new men over to stand alongside his desk. He introduces them to their new colleagues, 'This is Cyril Albones.'
Cyril gave everyone a friendly nod.  Cedric smiled and nodded back, the rest of us grunted our hello’s. Rolly points to the other new man, 'And, this is Timothy Barstow,' Timothy nodded nervously, 'Hi guys,' he said.
Everyone; including Cedric, stared at Timothy’s head, we could not drag our gaze away from the obvious wig that was a bit skewed, having been disturbed when he took his cap off to enter Rolly’s office. Cedric managed to tear his attention away and say, 'Hum, err, hi Tim; pleased to meet you.'
Rolly broke the ensuing silence, 'Right men. You take Barstow and Albones around the car parks Pollock, and give them the benefit of your knowledge. The rest of you get out there; and let’s have some bookings; too many dodgers are getting away with it, we need to show a profit for the councillors, for our department to avoid the chop. So, get out there chaps; lets rock and roll.
Cedric and his two trainees rushed out the office with an enthusiasm to get out and rock and roll, whilst us three colleagues shuffled out without any enthusiasm at all.
When we were out in the corridor Robbie Mumbled, 'Aye, well, we will see if he makes us wear those clown suits, I’ll take it to the court of human rights if I have to. looks like he hasn't had ours made yet, maybe he is thinking of getting rid of us and replacing us with the other clowns, I've seen that Albones bloke in the Crab Pots Seamen's club; tells everyone he's ex Special Air Services, he's not even been in the army Cadets. We should have some fun with him.'


January 17th   PM.  Madeleine thinks I look sexy in my new uniform and when I wear my sunglasses too she thinks I look really cool too, I almost took more than half an hour break to be with her longer, But, that's more than my jobs worth. I have been sweating today because I have had to get out of my van and walk around the car parks to show the new guys the ropes. I am starting to get a green ring around my neck where I have sweated around the collar of my new uniform. We seem to be getting a lot of abuse today, a drunk came out of a pub and asked me what I have come as. Strange people. I can't seem to get a tune out of my head; apparently, it is sung by a group called “The Village People”; quite a catchy tune and everyone is singing it wherever we go. It is called YMCA and they make the letters with their arms. They keep trying to get me and the new lads to dance along with them. we won’t though; That's more than our jobs worth; dancing along the street in uniform. I ask you? Different if we were off duty though.

If sweating upset Cedric, what happened later really upset him. It started to rain. Me and Billy were sheltering beneath the spiral ramp of Mariner Road Multi Story Car Park.
Cedric, Cyril, and Tim were dashing around the open car parks working hard whilst we sheltered from the rain. They had to give up distributing excess charge notices by the handful as their pens would not write on their sopping wet charge books. They came towards us in haste.
Robbie watched them enter the car park from the perimeter of the ground floor where he leant on the fence railing, he shouted to them, 'What time do you call this?  You can't go in the restroom yet. Don’t forget the camera is in there!'
 I joined in on the banter, this was fun, 'No, you will have to stay out there, your better sheltered than us; you’ll not feel the rain with them hats on; it’s like standing under a large brolly,' I turned to my pals, ‘'Look at the size of them caps lads; you could land a helicopter on one of them.'
As the three uniformed attendants got closer we all noticed that they had streaks of green dye running down their faces and hands.
 We met them at the entrance to the car park; no way were we going to miss this spectacle. Cedric pushed by us, 'We have to come in because it’s too wet to write any more excess charges out; and the bloody dyes running out of this material.'
 Billy looked them up and down with a wide grin, he said, 'Yeah, you look like you’re all changing into incredible hulks; well the incredible bulk in your case Cedric.'
 Cedric pushed him roughly aside, 'Sod off! Get out of my way.' he said. We followed them closely and crowded into the small confines of the rest room; giggling like children.
Cedric picked up the telephone receiver and dialled the number of the Car Parks and Security Office.
 Sir, the dye has run out of our hats, jackets, and trousers, our underwear is ruined; and Timothy's wig is ruined; he paid a lot of money for that; err, apparently.'
We could hear Rolly's thundering answer from where we were standing; well it was crowded in such a small room, so we were almost breathing down Cedric's sopping wet shirt collar.
 Never mind his wig; what the... Stay there; and don’t let the public see you. I am on my way round,' Rolly bellowed.
Cedric washed his hands in the small sink in the corner of the restroom next to the toilet cubicle, and watched the water turn green. Billy said, 'Well Rolly's saved some money buying that stuff for the council it must be cheap, the bloody dies run out.'
 'Tell us something we don’t know,' Cedric said in a panicky voice as he scrubbed at his hands with a nail brush, 'It doesn't come off skin like it does material,' he moaned. 
'You look like you've just landed in a flying saucer,' I said to wind him up.
Billy looked at their three large hats lying on the table. 'Yeah, they have a saucer each look,' he said.
Cedric had had enough of us, 'Sod off you three, the dyes gone through and into our underwear, we will have to strip off and get as much green off as we can. You heard me on the phone to Mr Edwin. He’s not very happy and he’s on his way here. So, don’t let him catch you lot in here at this time of day.' 'Let’s go lads, they obviously need to be alone in their underwear.' I said.
 We headed for the Bag 'O' Rats pub in the knowledge that they would be too busy to follow us. As we passed the vehicle entry to the multi-story an elderly lady called to us from within the car park.
'Coo-ee-yoo-hoo! Have either of you chaps got any change for the ticket machine?' she asked. She scurried out of the car park. opened her umbrella, and joined us on the footpath.
 I was about to put my hand in my pocket to see if I had any change, Robbie waved his hand to tell me not to bother and winked mischievously, 'No,' he said, 'we don’t have any change hen. But, if ye go to the car park rest room down there, you’ll find a group of car park attendants they will have change. Just walk in they won’t mind, they are very friendly.' He pointed the way and the lady thanked us and scurried to the attendant’s rest room.
 We ran along the wet street, the clouds parted, the hazy winter sunshine came out and we laughed as we headed towards the warm dry bar of the Bag ‘O’ Rats.
The lady arrived at the restroom and tapped on the door to be polite, then she walked into the rest room as Robbie had told her to do.
'Just a moment madam!' Cedric shouted in panic, too late, the elderly lady screamed at the sight of three men in their underwear with green paint daubed all over their bodies. she whacked Tim on the head with her brolly, as he was closest to her. when the tip of her brolly hooked his wig from his head, she screamed louder. Just as Rolly walked in, he saw what was happening, and retreated out the door without the lady seeing him.
'You dirty devils, I’ll report you to the council; using their premises for… ' she paused searching her mind for the appropriate words, '...an orgy. You are old enough to know better, what if someone’s children walked in here?'
'Hold on madam, it is not what it looks like we have had an accident.' Cedric proclaimed.
'A likely story. I’m going to the Town Hall to report you to the authorities.'
Rolly re-entered the restroom; the lady had ceased hitting Tim on the head; but she was waving her brolly around threateningly with his wig impaled on the tip.
Rolly asked, 'Is there a problem Madam?'
The feisty old lady turned to Rolly flustered and surprised at the question, 'A problem? I’ll say there’s a problem; Who are you? Have you come to join the party? '
'What party?' Rolly asked.
The old lady looked Rolly up and down with a look of distaste,
'What party? You know perfectly well what party, I had a cousin who was gay and he looked like you, fat, deep-set brown eyes and all shiny faced with moisturising cream.'
Rolly flushed red; not so much with embarrassment, more with temper,
'You stupid woman! I am the car park manager madam!' He yelled.
The old lady turned on Rolly as Rolly backed out through the restroom door, he tried to ward off the blows from the lady’s umbrella; that still had Tim's wig on the tip. Cedric Cyril and Tim came to their manager’s aid dressed in their underwear, but they didn’t know where to put their hands; especially under the circumstances; in any event, they were no match for the irate old lady and her umbrella.
An unmarked police car; yes, the same one, cruised around the corner and pulled up at the kerbside opposite the multi-storey car park,
 'What's going on there?' Detective Sergeant Philpot asked Detective Constable Chumney.
 'I don’t know Sarge, it looks like an old woman attacking a man with a dead rat impaled on a brolly; shall we call uniform in?’
The Sergeant was still smarting from a rollicking from his superiors after the arrest of Billy, so he decided to keep out of it and agree to call the uniform branch in with the excuse that there were only two of them and they didn't fancy tackling what looked like a full-scale riot.  He answered,
 'Yeah, I’m not getting involved in the goings on around car parks any more. Call uniform,' he said.
It wasn't long before a riot van pulled up outside the multi-story car park. Six police officers wearing full riot gear leapt out of the van and arrested Rolly, Cedric, Cyril and Tim. They left the old lady on the footpath, so DC Chumney took a statement from her. When she finished her statement, he said,
'It seems like you have walked in on a gay sex video madam. you only have to ask, why do they have a camera in such a small room? You see all sorts in this job madam; when some people get access to a camera; any camera, they get up to all sorts. We will check the CCTV tapes. Are you willing to go to court as a witness?’
'I certainly am willing, you try and stop me officer,' the old lady said with a shudder of distaste, 'they should be locked away for life. I am still shaking with shock.'





January 18th Am

It is 8 o'clock in the morning, this may be a bit scribbled as I am still shaking, having just been let out of the police station, along with Mr Edwin and one of my new colleagues; I have to go to work in my own civilian clothing because my uniform is in a plastic bag in the evidence room of the police station and me and Cyril had to walk home all cut and bruised around the face and head and dressed in white paper overalls; Mr Edwin refused to let us ride in the Council Solicitors car. We are being charged with committing an indecent act in a public place. Madeleine won't talk to me because she believes that there is no smoke without fire especially as Timothy Barstow is still in there because the Council Solicitor couldn't get him bail on account that he is helping the police with their enquiries about a bewigged transvestite approaching young men in the public toilets in Citizens Park. We have a meeting at 10 AM, after I have been to the Doctors.


When Cedric stood in front of Rolly that morning he was lathered in thick creamy substance. Rolly asked him if the rash has cleared on his skin.
'How’s your skin Pollock?  Have you cured the rash yet?'
'Well I've only just started using the ointment, it is early days yet sir. I am trying this cream out; Robbie McDowell said that the union will fight my case if I don’t get rid of it; it stings when I rub it near the cuts from that woman’s brolly point; so, I can sue her too for actual bodily harm as well as the council for my suffering as; he says, it is the councils fault.'
Rolly got angry,
'Now you look here Pollock, you can’t blame the council for that, I bought that material in good faith; McDowell will lose your job for you; And then who else do you think is going to employ an obese slug, who is oozing slime? Not to mention a criminal sex offence on his record. I am bruised and battered too; and my feelings are hurt also, after all I have done for you.’
Cedric shook nervously, ‘It’s not my fault sir,' he squawked shrilly, 'the dye from that material gave me a rash and I was only trying to get it off when that old bag rushed into our office without waiting to be invited in.'
 He turned into a gibbering wreck and tears rolled down his podgy cheeks when Rolly said, 'Well we are not forced to send the Council Solicitor to defend you if you are suing us and the court may assume that you have caught some sort of a disease patrolling the public toilets with that Timothy Barstow character... Stop blubbering man, you must have some sort of an allergy; the other two haven’t had a rash. Keep rubbing the cream in. Our legal team will prove you innocent; that is providing you don't take McDowell's advice and sue the Council. Did the doctor say that it’s permanent?’ ‘No sir, only if I come into contact with the chemicals found in that-that dye. It was embarrassing sir; I did as you told me and didn't mention the uniform. He thought that I had smeared my body with the stuff on purpose; he said that I should act my age and he had more to do than treat idiots with self-inflicted skin problems.’
'Ah! Well done Pollock, we don’t want it getting around the town; no more than you would like these false accusations to get around Town. I wasn't charged with anything myself as they believed the solicitor when he told them that I came across the scene accidentally whilst visiting the car park during my duties. I would sue that bloody tailor but he has retired to some Caribbean Island. However; I only asked you how you were; I asked you about your doctor’s medical opinion, not his private opinions about you; he must know you well. Err, can’t you rub that goo in a bit more? You look disgusting.'
'I’ll try sir. However, I have to refute your insinuation that my doctor knows me sir; I hardly go to the doctors; and I'm not a pervert!…'
Rolly pulled a face and cut into his sentence, changing the subject, he said, 'Right, I have acquired some other uniforms from the security department, but they are in for repairs and alterations as there were some big guys on security. So, in the meantime, you will have to distribute these vis-jackets to the men and tell them that I want them all in Sea Road car parks rest room at 1300hrs sharp. I have some valuable information to share with them,'

Talking of perverts, Timothy was under suspicion of being exactly that, and D.S. Philpot and D.C. Chumney were pulling all the stops out to prove that he was. Timothy used his one allowed phone call from the police station to ask Rolly if the Council Legal Team would represent him. This is what happened in the interrogation; Interview room, at the Police Station.
 Detective Sergeant Philpot looked up from the pile of unsolved crimes, having found the one he was looking for. Tim fidgeted uneasily, confused by the silent approach.Weren’t you bald headed when me and Constable Chumney saw you fighting with that old lady? The sergeant asked.
‘well, I am receding a little' The Sergeant Glowered at Tim’s wig, his good cop associate gave him a sympathetic smile. The Sergeant asked,Is that a female’s wig? The Elderly lady said that she was disgusted that she had walked into a gay orgy. She acted in shock.’ Tim felt his face reddening. He tried the friendly approach, ‘Well, yes officer, But I have cut it into a style myself. It looked better before the old lady stuck the point of her brolly in it and threw it in the dirt outside the restroom. We were not in a gay orgy we were drying our clothes out on the radiator as the rain had washed the dye into our skins; as you know, we live in a more understanding country now, it is not a crime to be homosexual.' Tim said.
Good cop Chumney came to his defence.
Yes, I can see that your toupee has been ragged a bit.  Was it expensive?
Ragged a bit? It looks like a dog chewed it; and he's dyed it lime green,’The bad cop Sergeant answered in sham disbelief and disgust. The constable feigned embarrassment. 
Well I’m only trying to put the fellow at ease; just to let him know we are not as bad as we are painted; After all he can’t help his little problem,’ he said, in his friendly good cop manner.
Painted? well he's been badly painted in more ways than one. Modern dye doesn't run like that! Right then,’ The sergeant said impatiently, ‘you do admit to wearing a lady’s wig, it has been shaped by yourself; which if I am correct is a feminine thing to do; and we can see that it has had a lime green rinse in the manner that modern women have theirs done at the hairdressers...’He paused to savour Tim’s squirming embarrassment. As soon as Tim opened his mouth to speak, the sergeant carried on, ‘...Do you use those same scissors to make your own dresses?’ Timothy gasped in surprise at such a question. He glanced sideways at the constable; looking for some sort of backup. The constable pursed his lips and winked understandingly, Don’t be embarrassed Timothy; lots of men like to find their feminine side, and as you rightly point out it isn't against the law to be gay; I know many gays.’ The constable  the constable lied, but said it all in the hope that Tim would admit that he wore female clothing as well as a wig.
You speak for yourself officer,’
Tim exclaimed; he had had enough of their innuendo. 
What do you mean by that? Are you accusing Constable Dunks of being one of your lot?’
My lot, what do you mean by that?’
He-She’s,’ the homophobic Sergeant shrieked in temper, as he leant across the table in a threatening manner.
He-She’s?’ Tim asked as he leant back swinging his chair onto its back legs, to keep out of range of the Sergeants spittle emitting face.
Detective Constable Chumney came to his defence again, Your frightening him Sergeant; can’t you see he’s just a sensitive little man- a bit kinky, yes; but aren’t all his sort sensitive? Look Tim if you admit to your little foible it will not even get into the press; they will refer you to a Psychiatrist and admit you to a mental hospital; for less time than you would be in prison; If you knew what sex case prisoners go through in prison, you will take my advice,’
I have no foibles of that kind officer. I merely wear a wig to keep my head warm as I am receding a little; It is just the same as wearing a hat’
The constable picked up a couple of statements from the unsolved files, as he read two of them he said,
Would that be a wide brimmed hat, a red flowered one, or a pretty blue number, with a white bow? Err; as they are described in these people’s statements,’ The constable asked.
The sergeant interrupted, after he had worked up enough of a rage to frighten Tim into admitting his guilt; because he realised the Constables softly, softly, tactic was not working.
Sensitive? I’ll give him sensitive, What about those people in Citizens Park? Doesn’t their sensitivity come into it? We have witnesses willing to swear that a man answering to your description pranced around Citizens Park wearing women’s clothing, garish make-up and a woman’s wig, scaring women and children, propositioning young men. If you do not come clean now, I will make sure that you will receive a very long sentence, and, I will make sure that my newspaper friends put all the sordid details of your perverted acts in the Cods Haven Evening Tattle. You will never be able to show your face around this town again! What's more, there is a respectable lady waiting to take the witness  stand and swear that you and your work colleagues were taking part in a gay orgy on Council PUBLIC PROPERTY! ’ He bellowed.
That is preposterous,’ Tim exclaimed; when he managed to get a word in.
What IS preposterous, is what you have been doing since last July; Isn’t it? So why do you do it?’ The sergeant asked, a little quieter as though he had given in to the fact that he couldn't make Tim see the error of his ways.
 I wasn’t in Codshaven then, I was…’ Tim started to say, but the Sergeant interrupted him again. He stood up with his hands on the table, having worked himself up into another rage; he leant his long body further forward, knowing that he would be within Tim’s comfort zone. His spittle glistened on his moustache and sprinkled into Tim’s blinking eyes. Tim leant back further; too far, he fell back onto the floor, his teeth slid to the back of his throat and he started to choke. Sergeant Philpot and Constable Chumney thought that he was having a heart attack; they ran around the table in panic. They rolled him onto his side. Tim was turning blue around the lips and eyes, he coughed and his teeth flew out. He staggered to his feet and replaced his teeth, to the relief of the two officers.
 Once they had all sat back around the table, and before Tim had recovered fully, Sergeant Philpot continued with the assassination on Tim’s character.
 False wig’s, false teeth; false tits in Citizens Park?’ He asked. His loud voice rang in Timothy's ears and brought his recovery forward, I have a right to remain silent; I know my rights,’he muttered in despair.

January 18th P.M.

 I am not looking forward to this meeting. The terrible trio will be on form. They have been wolf whistling me all day and they have obviously told all the other workers on the Council. Miss Tidwell is giving me a few side glances and keeps giggling into her hands.

 Unlike Cedric, Me Robbie and Billy were looking forward to the meeting; we were relieved that we won't be wearing those stupid uniforms for one thing. Rolly stood glowering at us. He was standing in his usual place with his back to the restroom window as he warmed himself on the radiator. All us five car park attendants packed ourselves into the small room, standing around the walls and sitting on the restroom table.
Rolly Watched us with a face like thunder,  waiting for someone to have the audacity to even smirk, until we had all manoeuvred ourselves into our positions. We were happier than last time he called us all to a meeting and he didn't like us to be happy; so we hid our amusement as much as possible. Once we were all in and giving him our full attention he began,
 'I have an important statement to make men…'
 Robbie cut in, 'You are compensating Brother Pollock for ye poisoning his body?'
'...Be quiet a moment McDowell! As you know, this Country is under threat from terrorists and as we are now responsible for security we are in the front line…'
 I cut in, 'Don’t tell us, you’re kitting us out with army surplus uniforms? We'd make a good Dads Army.'
 ‘...Pollock, if anyone else interrupts, take their name and I’ll give them a written warning; and make a note that McDowell and Star have already had a verbal warning…'
Billy cuts in. 'That’s not fair, I haven’t had a verbal warning yet, so, if I interrupt you, you can’t give me a written warning.'
 '...Add Buffam’s name to the list Pollock, now then, as we are now responsible for a twenty-four-hour security service, we will have to do a shift rota...'
  Robbie interrupts again, 'As the Union Rep, I have a right to question ye on the assumption that ye can change our times of working without consulting my members first.'
Rolly glanced up to the ceiling and tutted, 'I have already told you that we are taking over the duties of the security department to save your jobs, and as one of the security duties consist of guarding all Bogrims Marsh council buildings when the office-staff aren’t there we have to be there during the night. Burglars do not break in buildings whilst people are working inside them; they come at the dead of night; and now that we have the added threat of terrorism we must be on our toes at all hours. I want three volunteers for tonight; you will be paid a day’s work for today although you will be going home after this meeting so that they can rest up ready for tonight...’
Robbie put his hand in the air for permission to speak. Rolly nodded his permission with some trepidation. 'Me, Jack and Billy will do the first night; Billy and Jack are used to working long hours doing 24 hours watch on the trawlers; before that hook hit Jack on the head and knocked his eye out, and Billy came ashore because the Icelandic’s ran them out of the fishing grounds…’
Rolly sneered and said, 'And Buffam still smells of fish…'
Cedric laughed and Cyril tittered. It was Robbie's turn to glower now,
 'Don’t ye take the pish out of the trawler men, ye not fit to tie their boots they are hard working men on the most dangerous job in the world; open to dangerous severe weather conditions in freezing waters…’
Rolly Knew that Robbie was talking the truth but he wasn't going to admit that he was wrong, he interrupted Robbie's rant, 'Well I've never seen them work hard; you can never find them when you need them.'
Neither Cedric, or Cyril laughed this time; they put their heads down as they could see that Robbie was angry.
 'Aye because ye don’t pay them enough to get involved with irate motorist; and another thing I served for twenty-two years in the Black Watch so you can’t tell me about guarding buildings day and night against terrorist. And what would any self-respecting terrorist want to attack Cods Haven Council for?'
'Well if you were in the forces you will have heard of soft targets then, and our Council could be a soft target if we are not on our guard.'
Billy said, 'Well we’ll have to watch ourselves then. We are the bloody soft sods doing this job, if ever I knew any.
Rolly didn't have an answer except to say, I will make the roster up; I don’t want you 3 working together; you’ll spend your entire shift in the Bag ‘O’ Rats.  I have decided to put Buffam with Albones together...' he was interrupted when the restroom door opened and Tim sidled in nervously. 'What are you doing here?' I asked, 'Have you escaped?'
'They let me go without any charge and I think I know why.'
 'The Council legal team will have got you out on bail, but you are suspended until you go to court and then you will be sacked.' Rolly said.
 'It had nothing to do with the Council They dropped all charges because I think they have caught the culprit,' he had caught everyone's attention, this we wanted to hear, 'As I left the Interview Room a person who I recognised as the Councillor for the Dock Area Constituency tottered by me in stiletto heels a blond wig, blue dress and garish make up on his face. He was escorted by a young baby faced chap who must be an undercover cop; they probably used him as a decoy to catch him; So, there you are Mr Edwin; innocent until proven guilty.'
 That would be Mr Pratt-Smyth he's a pillar of society; He's a High Master at my club.'
  'Aye that'll be why he has not been caught man; friends in high places.'
  'And a friend of yours boss?'  I said. 

THIS SHORT STORY MAY BE MADE INTO A LONGER STORY FOR A BOOK; IT DEPENDS ON WHAT SORT OF A REACTION I GET.

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