28 Apr

This is something I have never done on this blog before but it is time for me to make a formal apology… to the people of England. I have done something terrible in a moment of stupidity and… well… there is no way to sugar coat this so I’m just going to come clean and say it. The Dutch now own England and it is all my fault.

During a Sunday afternoon in an Amsterdam bar I engaged in a game of pool with some friends. We decided it would be fun to form two teams; Dutch vs. British. After a few friendly games we decided to make things ‘interesting’ by putting a little wager on the table. This ‘little’ wager was that if we (the British Team) won we would own Holland and if they (the Dutch Team) won they would own England. I think you can guess where this story is going. It seemed like a good idea at the time right up until the point when we (the British Team) lost to them (The Dutch Team). Now our home land is owned by two Dutch guys with the must Dutch sounding names imaginable, Jochem and Jeroen. However, we now all have to call them King Jochem and King Jeroen (unless one of them opts for being the Queen).

This means that any body living in England who does not wish to wear orange, eat bitter ballen or listen to music by Frans Bauer should emigrate to Wales or Scotland (which I luckily did not gamble away). I know this will be hard on all of you but as you all try to learn Welsh or try to learn how to love deep fried Mars Bars and pizzas I hope you can take some comfort in the fact that it was a very close game. It all came down to the black ball in the end and some jolly bad luck.

I’ve not spoken to the Queen yet but I expect that she will be very angry with me when the news reaches her. I fully expect I will receive a jolly good telling off with lots of finger waving and use of my full name as I look sheepishly at the floor.

But fear not people of England. If someone is willing to lend me their country for just a short while I’m sure I can win England back. I hear there is an underground chicken racing game organized by an ex-mob boss which is taking place in just a few days. I’ve got a good tip so I’m sure to win a few other countries in the process. Trust me, what could possibly go wrong?

15 Apr

If there is one important lesson we all could have learned from the 80s it is that you can never really keep a horror movie villain down. They can never truly be defeated and they always return. The same is true of my own personal nemesis; The Lift.

Maybe I had become too cocky and let my guard down because it had been a few years since I had spent that long night trapped alone in its small confined space of steel and evil. It had long since become just an amusing story of an unlucky event. I had started using the lift again despite the fact that my co-workers would quickly exited it when ever they saw me enter because I was, “cursed.”

I should have known that the lift was not defeated, it was not silenced, it was not beaten. No. It was waiting. I should have seen the warning signs but I had become arrogant in my lift riding abilities.

As I returned to the office from a long lunch and entered the lobby the lift was already waiting for me. No one else was around. No one could have pushed the button but the doors were strangely open. I was too blinded by stair climbing laziness to question this fact. I stepped inside. I pushed the button for the third floor which lit up dimly. The doors slid slowly shut with a strained, rusty mechanical sound and then… nothing. Silence. Stillness. Lack of movement in the vertical direction that lifts are usually known to travel along.

I pushed the button for the 3rd floor again… nothing.

I pushed the button to open the doors… nothing.

I had fallen for its trick. I was trapped once more. The lift had captured me in its tiny space again. I was sure I could even hear it laughing.

However, the lift had sprung its trap too soon. It had waited for so long but it had not waited long enough. There were still other people in the building this time. I knew I would be the one who would have the last laugh. I pushed the alarm button to rally everyone to my aid but… nothing.

The alarm sounded but no one came to the rescue. It had become a joke to press the alarm button every now and then when I entered the lift so no one paid attention to it any more. I suddenly realized why the lift had waited for so long to play its little trick on me. I had become the boy who cried lift.

All seemed lost. I was doomed. I was trapped. No one was coming to my rescue. I started to pace up and down in the small space and cursed the lift. And then… suddenly… after one minute… the doors opened. The lift simply let me out. I slowly stepped out, unsure if it was a trick but it was not.

I don’t know if the lift was playing mind games with me or just reminding me that it could strike at any time. All I know is that I will not let my guard down again because I now know once again that that lift is truly evil.

Maybe there is a lift in your place of work or residence. Maybe you have ridden it up and down between floors for years. Maybe you think it is safe. I hope my experiences have proven to you that this is not the case. All lifts are evil. Prey that they don’t choose to strike next time you enter them.