Chapter Seven (In which the cat gets shot)

Alright, calm down, no animals were harmed in the writing of this book; we’re talking about photography remember! And we’re back with our principal protagonist who had inserted his memory card; made sure the battery was charged up, switched the dial to AUTO as advised by the instructions and was ready to shoot. He even remembered to switch it on but was still faced with a viewfinder of darkness. He went through the usual checks:

  1. Eyes are open, tick.
  2. Switch camera off and back on again, tick.
  3. It’s not night time and I’m outside, tick.
  4. Switch camera off and back on again, tick.
  5. Check instructions, tick.
  6. Switch camera off and back on again, tick.
  7. Switch camera off and back on again, tick.
  8. Say ‘shit, you dozy git’ and remove lens cap.

And then he was ready. Unlike Biggles who had been having a snooze in preparation for his afternoon nap but now decided to come to life and was pacing nonchalantly in and out of shot.

‘Bloody cat!!’

And so it was that Biggles successfully got an afternoon snack. And his picture taken. Not a very good picture but then this was Phil’s first attempt with a proper camera (although strictly speaking he thought it was set to automatic which is the same as all his previous cameras). On the back of the screen was the clearest photograph Phil had ever seen, every detail was crisp and sharp.

A warm glow of pride coursed through Phil, a grin of self-satisfaction planted itself firmly on Phil’s face and he decided to immediately give up photography. He hadn’t been this proud since he’d stacked some playing cards five tiers high….or was it the day he spent with a tennis ball under each armpit and no-one suspected a thing…..or maybe when he’d hit a coconut with a ball (that did result in another supermarket ban but hey it was worth it)….? No, he decided, THIS was his proudest moment.

And so he….oh, what was that? You’re wondering why he’s giving up photography? Well this was something relatively new to Phil; he’d actually peaked at something. He wasn’t sure he’d ever done that before, the playing cards could have been six high, the tennis balls could have been bowling balls and he could have actually knocked the coconut off the shelf instead of the ball rebounding and sending a stack of apples cascading down the aisle…. He’d never got an A in anything, never come first at anything, never won anything…..crikey, if I was him I’d be getting somewhat morose if I was thinking along these lines. Are you glad you asked now??

Fortunately Phil is still revelling in his glory of capturing the clearest picture ever taken and thinking he could never take a picture clearer than that. So, his reasoning (and you’ll be glad to hear that this is only temporary) was that any future pictures would be a disappointment so what was the point? And that’s how the situation remained until Paula came home.

Paula was rarely surprised by anything Phil did, they’d been together a long time and she had put up with a lot. She’d made it through the time he’d taken up gardening and misread the instructions or, to put it more correctly, he thought the symbol ‘’ was a foot rather than an inch and when instructed to dig 10’’ deep holes to plant some bulbs…..well you can guess the rest.

Then there was the time he’d taken up building Airfix models because he’d apparently missed out on doing it as a kid. The staff at A&E were very understanding but did say that that was the most bits of plastic they’d ever seen superglued to anyone. Quite why Phil had opted for superglue instead of the usual adhesive was never questioned. Once you’d spoken to Phil for a short amount of time you started being able to work out the answers to those sort of questions anyway.

But the most extreme hobby (possibly) had been origami. We’ve all had paper cuts but none that required stitches surely. Phil had and was banned from hobbies for six months after that escapade.

So, as you can see, Paula was pretty much ready for anything every time she came home. But she had never, EVER seen a smug look on Phil’s face. She thought it might be wind at first then maybe contentment (a good poo was usually enough to illicit that look) but no, this was something different, something new. So of course she was concerned.

‘Do I need to call an ambulance or is one already on the way?’ was all she could think of to say.

‘EUREKA!!!’ Phil screamed at the top of his voice.

‘I’ll phone the doctor instead’ was all Paula could think of to say.

‘EUREKA!!!’ Phil screamed again and again and again until finally he noticed that Paula had put her coat on and gone out again.

‘But I’m David Bailey’ he shouted after her, ‘David BLOODY Bailey!!!’

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About the author

Fresh from failing to be an actor, a singer and retaining a full head of hair Glyn is now attempting to be a photographer and a novelist. He has taken more pictures today than he has written words of his novel in the last six months. Some of them he regards as okay..

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