Clint Eastwood’s Boots
The boy’s a fool. I still can’t believe my beautiful daughter produced this pimpled buffoon. Though when you look at the human potato she married, it’s no great surprise, I suppose.
He’s sent round every week – every week! – for an obligatory Sunday afternoon chat. It’s tedious. I might be old but I’ve got plenty of stuff I want to be getting on with. In fact, knowing there’s only a rapidly dwindling amount of sand left in my timer just makes this worse.
And I know he doesn’t want to be here trying to fill those silences any more than I do. What red-blooded, acne-ridden teenage boy wants to spend sunny afternoons racking his brains as to what the hell he’s supposed to say to grandpa when he could be out staring wistfully at girls he can’t have and investing heavily in Clearasil?
These visits got to be such hard work that, a couple of weeks ago, I bought a TV. Just to keep the boy quiet and to try and make it feel like those hours he spends with me aren’t completely devoid of entertainment.
But it’s just made everything worse. Like the old woman who swallowed a fly. I thought bringing the TV into my home would mean freedom from desperate teenage babbling; instead it’s beaming a cacophony of nonsense spouted by fools in ridiculous outfits into my lounge. It’s all ‘reality TV’, featuring the most fake bunch of folk I’ve ever set eyes on. And now this bilge can crudely blast its way into my home 24/7!
It’s magnetic too. You’d think, if I don’t want to watch this intellectual plankton parading around then I could just keep it switched off, right? It doesn’t work like that. When I wake in the early hours – which is frequent now I’m so goddamn old – I find myself drawn to it and compelled to check on what Davina McCall’s up to, or watch show-pony newsreaders spout the same headlines in a hundred different ways on the 24-hour news. Actually, I blame these people for most of the atrocities going on in the world today – they’re so desperate for something new to talk about, I think they will massacres and natural disasters to happen.
I can see now why rockstars throw tellys out of hotel room windows.
My grandson seems to enjoy it though. I suppose it’s taken away the pressure on him to talk to an old codger. He used to sit there like a pudding, slumped in his chair, nodding along to whatever I was ranting about or staring awkwardly at his feet while we both tried to think of something to say. But now he stares rapt at the screen and gets quite animated whenever there’s something on he’s enjoying – the football, an old Western… I made a crack about Clint Eastwood’s boots the other day and he laughed. He’s got quite a nice laugh when he’s not doing it just to be polite.