Chooby, One Lazy Bastard by Angus Shoor Caan

Cast your mind back, back to the good old days, the mid-seventies when all that good music was coming to the fore.

The flat was a middle floor situation at the top of Glasgow Street and those in the know, a select few, called it The Den. It actually started off as The Hash Den Ponderosa but that soon became far too much of a mouthful.

The stuff arrived a day early which caught most of the Denners a little by surprise, but good news travels fast, especially when one Ally Catt gets wind of it. Best black, scored on the strength of a patchy phone call and greatly anticipated for almost a week.

Six of them chucked in to afford it along with a bit extra for Raggy’s expenses, namely food and socialising money for when he reached the source of the black, Accrington Lancs. Accrington via somewhere exotic in India but the informative phone call came from Accrington.

Raggy hitched it back in record time, and without incident which was highly unusual for him. He had been chatting to a fellow hitch-hiker by the slip-road, a good looking Hippie-chick who smelt faintly of Patchouli Oil and rotting fur coat, familiar smells really. When the banana lorry stopped they both jumped in but the driver was most upset when Chez, the girl, told him she was only going as far as Preston. Raggy let her clamber over him at her drop off point, knowing full well Rowdy, the driver, would have left him standing if he had exited first. He discovered Chez had great tits and a lovely firm arse as he lent assistance to her struggle.

Rowdy turned out to be a good bloke, for an Englishman, shite taste in music but. Fair enough he knew all the words and could carry a tune, but Country and Western, man?

They made such good time on the motorway that Rowdy invited himself in for a toke on the black, his delivery not being due until later that evening. That meant Raggy was observed stepping out of the cab by Ally Catt and the grapevine was set in motion.

Malky, whose name was on The Den’s rent book, built a six skinner as shareholders began to arrive. Had he known what was coming he could have saved three skins for another time.

Two tokes each and pass it on, those were the rules as explained to Rowdy, everyone else knew them by heart. Twice round the company and it became obvious Malky had over-egged it ever so slightly, probably more than that truth be told.

They all heard Chooby bounding up the stairs since the music had stopped and no one was in any fit state to do anything about it.

“It’s here int it? A could smell it doon them stairs, man. Is it as guid as they said it wid be? Jeez O, luck it the state o’ yez.”

Six bodies lay draped over various items of furniture as Chooby took in the scene. To a man, they were capable of eye movement only, and even that was a strain on resources.

Malky managed to nod towards the album sleeve holding the makings.

“’Srer. ’Srer oan the flair. Go easy wi’ it Chooby, man. ’Slethal, man, so it is.”

Chooby sat on the floor with his back to Malky’s chair. There was someone he didn’t know flaked all over his favourite spec on the bean-bags but he reckoned at least one of his confederates must know him; OddBall, the resident cat didn’t appear to be bothered about him, and he could be fussy.

“Haud oan Chooby. Chinge the record furst wull ye, man? Ye’ll no kin dae it efter a couple o’ puffs o’ that stuff, man.”

“Jeez O an’ help ma fuckin’ Boab,” complained Chooby, “a want tae get aff ma cake lit yous cunts. Ken whit a’m sayin’ here?

“Jeest chinge the record ya greetin’ wean wull ye? It’ll no take ye ten seconds, man. Jeest turn that yin ower, man.”

Chooby got to his feet and did as he was asked.

“Chooby man. Pit the kettle oan an’ make a pot o’ tea, man,” implored Mousy, “a’m fair parched so a’m ur.”

Others joined with the plea

“Fur fuck’s sake, man, this is no real, a suppose yez’ll a’ greet et me if a don’t, wulln’t yez, man?” It was a rhetorical question and treated as such by those gathered.

“Pit a shovel o’ coal oan the fire tae wull ye?” that was Bendy from somewhere in the dark corner, “ ’Sfreezin’ in here, man.”

“A’m gonnae get aw yous bastarts fur this, yous wait an’ see if a don’t. Shite in a bucket, thurs nae fuckin’ coal in the pail, man. Aw fuck, man.”

Chooby could be heard grumbling all the way down the stairs to the coal bunker, then huffing and puffing all the way back up.

“Is that tea ready?” asked Rowdy, putting Chooby on high alert with his English accent, “did somebody mention a cuppa?”

“Who brung this gadgie?” demanded Chooby indignantly, “an whit the fuck’s ‘e dayin’ in ma sate?”

“Easy Chooby, son,” said Mousy soothingly, “that’s Roddy, man, he’s wan o’ the good guys. Bit e’s right whit ‘e says, where the fuck’s that tea? Did ye huv a stroll tae China fur it ur whit?”

“Rowdy,” corrected Rowdy, “the name’s Rowdy, man.”

“Tea, coal, chinge the record. Whit did yer last skivvy die o’?”

“Fuckin’ complainin’,” replied more than one of the company.

“Shite in another fuckin’ bucket,” cried Chooby, “some saft cunt’s left the fuckin’ milk oot an it’s as soor as Raggy’s burd’s fizzer.”

“Ye’ll huv tae go doon tae the shoap fur sum mair,” informed Raggy, taking no offence whatsoever at the slight Chooby had aimed at his own wee sister, “an’ wull ye bring some chocolate Chooby man, a’m fair famished so a’m ur.”

“This is a fuckin’ nightmare, man. This isnae happenin’ tae me, a’m totally scunnert wi’ the fuckin’ lot o’ yez, man.”

Halfway down the stairs and Chooby was called back by person or persons unknown.

“Whit the fuck is it noo?” he demanded, “dis wan o’ yez want yer pilla fluffed up ur somethin’?”

“Wur probably gonnae need some mair skins, man. Yur mibbez better gettin’ some while yur doon there eh?”

“Skins…an’ milk, is that it? Ur yez sure aboot that noo?”

“Mibbez ye’d better write it doon, ya moanin’ fucker,” that was Target, who until then hadn’t said a word.

“Et tu, ya fuckin’ brute? Stick another knife in me why don’t ye?”

Chooby got maybe all the way down the stairs before he was recalled once more.

“Man a don’t believe this. A’m gonnae pish a’ ower yez a’ while yez ur lyin’ there helpless. That’ll fuckin’ learn yez. Whit the fuck is it noo?”

“Shut that fuckin’ door, man. ’Sfreezin’ in here wi’ it open.”

“Lazy bastard that, man,” said Mousy when Chooby thumped downstairs in a huff, “dae fuck a’ fur naebdy so ‘e’ll no.”

“’E’s ay been the same, man,” agreed Raggy, “ever since we wiz weans, man, ‘member?”

“Aye,” they all said, even Rowdy who was perhaps half a second behind the others. He seemed to be picking up on the lingo no bother.

“Cauld as a witch’s tit oot there,” complained Chooby on his return, “an’ a should ken. A wiz mairied tea wan. An’ bye the way, man, that wummin’ in the wee shoap could talk unner watter so she could, a’m share o’ that.”

“Never mind that Chooby, man. Chinge the record wull ye?”

Angus Shoor Caan is in an ex-seaman and rail worker.  Born and bred in Saltcoats, he returned to Scotland after many years in England and found the time to begin writing.  He has written a poetry collection and several novels, the latest of which is Violet Hiccup