I realised a while back that I was in the autumn of my life because (a) I know about the four seasons of man and (b) I can count. However, the self-image I cherished was of a noble tree going gold and russet in the leaf area, but still sturdy of trunk, deep-rooted and sticky with sap when the wind was in the right direction. Then, not so long ago, there came into my life a woman who was bursting into the fruitiness of a late spring. That is to say, she was a lot younger than me but well over the legal limit. Which is to say, she could have known better and I should have known better.
After a sporadically jolly time together in London, this young lady decamped to the North of England. We maintained contact by means of text messages, which were of a fairly mundane nature. That is until one Friday afternoon when the mobile buzzed around on my office desk announcing incoming. A simple yet perplexing set of letters appeared: “S*x t*xt, PC?” With fingers stuttering over the little buttons, I replied in what was meant to be an immediate fashion, but took five minutes: “I say! Y*s please!!”
I shall summarise what followed as follows: “I am naked. I am pouring a bottle of Absolut vodka over my body. I then command you thusly: Lick here, now here, suck there.” To say that I was flabbergasted would be to do that fine old word an injustice. Firm young shoots of growth sprouted amongst my autumnal foliage. Having been around the block a few times – and been inside most of the buildings – I now felt impelled impelled to walk around the actual block once and smoke three cigarettes simultaneously.
The next week, another s*x t*xt arrived. This time, I was invited to imagine the young lady naked on a bed, limbs carelessly spreadeagled. Dangling from the edge of the bed were a pair of tights, artfully discarded. The question then posed was direct and unmistakable in its saucy implication: what would I like to do with the tights? My response still brings a youthful blush to my ancient cheeks to this day. Thinking to hide mounting excitement behind a fatuous display of levity, I proposed slipping into the tights and dancing around the bed while a lisping a medley of Elizabethan love songs. This was not the right answer.
On week three, she made another attempt. This one also had her naked, this time perched on the edge of a table, legs akimbo. The final line went like this: “With one hand, I gently open the lips of my vagina, while with the other, I beckon you to crawl towards me across the floor and let your tongue do the talking.” This is when I finally lost the plot for good, replying with the description of an epic sex between the two of us which took place in a pet shop. Imaginary, of course. The scene climaxed with a doggy-style interaction, which was accompanied by the mass yelping of puppies and the frenzied twitterings of budgies.
I never heard from her again. And all the leaves fell off my tree.
Now, needless to say, is the winter of my discontent.