Fishing With Uncle Steve

I can still remember the time I went fishing with Mad Uncle Steve. He wasn’t really my uncle, but he was definitely mad. It wasn’t so obvious early on, but later, after the hamster-confetti incident, it became clear that he was, in the words of my mother, “as mad as a chocolate potato.”

Of course, I knew something was wrong when we arrived at the fishing spot. The fishing rods consisted of huge black rubber penises with shoelaces tied to them, and he insisted on using fried onions as bait. For lunch we had 11 bratwursts and a family size tub of Greek yoghurt, which Steve downed in one go like it was cheap lager. If I had been any younger, then I could well have been mentally scarred for life by the experience. As I was thirty-five at the time, I simply found it annoying.

It was me who suggested, later on, that he be committed. I contacted the doctors and filled out most of the paperwork, and before we knew it he had been whisked away in a straight jacket to a life of daily medication and rubber wallpaper.

I saw him again a couple of years later, outside sainsbury’s. I don’t know if he had been discharged or had  escaped. He was wearing a clown hat and pissing on his own feet. I didn’t wait to see if he recognised me.

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