Dee Lish Shush! 1982
Oh well, live and let live!
The blind date double had been set up for the evening of the 28th August, l remember so clearly because there are not many days in my life that l can remember as being remarkably terrifying, so it’s not a date l forget in a hurry… I was working the morning to early evening shift, and so l took a change of clothing with me to the office. It wasn’t unusual for my parents to see me take clothing to work. Afterall l was in catering, l had to wear suits all day and black-tie tux most evenings.
I didn’t tell my parents l was going out on a date, l simply couldn’t stand all the probing questions l would have to put up with from my mother nor the usual ‘ male like’ questions from my father – the old ‘huah stick it to her’ things he used to utter! But it wasn’t just that …. more importantly l was taking someone out closer to my mother’s age and my father’s spank bank vaults!
Burke wasn’t working that day, he said he would pick me in the evening at seven and we would go to the restaurant for dinner and then off to Guildford to see ‘The Thing’ an absolutely classic movie starring Kurt Russell. I remember asking why that movie, why a horror? “Because it will creep them out mate!” He answered with a smirk and a sly laugh!
“Right, and that’s a good thing is it? To ‘creep them out?’ I asked him.
“Yep, trust me on that, you’ll get it and maybe literally!” With that he laughed.
All day through my shift l was apprehensive. Making matters worse was one of the women l worked with, Caroline – said she knew Nancy’s mother – “She’s lovely Rory, she really is! A very young-looking mother, she and Nancy are quite the pair when seen together. Her name’s Louisa. Recently divorced from her husband. I had lunch with her literally only a couple of weeks ago. She’s very enthusiastic and bubbly, a very passionate person. She got fed up with her husband’s flirting and affairs and so she divorced him – the only downside is that she is a bit of a party girl herself and likes her drink. Her husband was younger than her by a good ten years, he wasn’t the father to Nancy …. and you are blind dating with her? Mm, tonight you say? Mm. Well that’s certainly going to test you l feel. Do you know what she does for a living?”
“No Caroline, l don’t know, l don’t know anything about her, l’ve learned more from you and l am even more apprehensive than l was before, sheesh! What does she do then?”
“She is a fashion buyer for a big London designer house. She always looks so very glam! Are you familiar with the term ‘Pussy or Pussycat?” Caroline asked.
“What like cats and kittens. I have Jasmine at home, she is my cat, l suppose you could call her a pussycat. Why?”
“So, you are not familiar with the terminology at all with regards women who like to date younger men?
“I didn’t know there was a terminology Caroline, but you date younger men. Are you a pussycat is that what you are saying? So, is Louisa a pussycat as well? Does she date younger men? I thought she was just divorced??”
“You are so naive to women Rory, it’s astonishing – how you have managed to get to where you are and not been bitten once by any cats – l told you Louisia was a party girl! Yes, l have been referred to as a pussycat, but l am more a wildcat than a mere housecat and Louisia is a wildcat too!”
All this talk of cats, pussycats, wildcats and housecats was just confusing the hell out of me. “Is she attractive Caroline, is Louisa attractive? Is she attractive?”
“Drop dead gorgeous is what she is Rory! You are in for a hell of a night!”
I got on with the rest of my day and every time l saw Caroline, she just winked and wiggled her top half at me! Caroline was a good-looking woman, and l had seen her with younger men as well, albeit older than me, just younger than her, she flirted a lot. She was in her later fifties, and was always tanned, not nicely either, she looked like dark leather with just as many wrinkles! On a bad day she looked like a crumpled leather jacket! She walked about on ridiculously high heels for her age, and walking wasn’t the right term, more so ‘tottering’. She reminded me when she smiled of a vampire. But the men loved her, and their wives hated her.
Caroline always wore blouses a little too tight across her chest and she had to be a 36″ bust for sure – l may have been shy, but l was a breast man from school, so l knew a bit about boobs from boob observation! Her’s were 36’s and she just wore her blouses too tight, too open and with the bra style if she was leaning over you, all you saw was white teeth and dark boobs!
But my boss, Tom he thought she was brilliant, she and her sister Jenny [year younger] were like twins in many respects, they were great ‘old school’ waitresses … but above everything – they were actually nice ladies, as long as you didn’t mind your bottom being spanked, patted and pinched and or your nipples tweaked beneath your shirt! A favourite trick of Caroline’s was to walk into the walk-in freezer without a bra and come back out ………. [Oh yes things like that are not acceptable these days, but back then, they were fun, and a hell of a learning curve!]
Finally, my shift was coming to an end. So, grabbing my change of clothes l hit the showers and got ready for my night. As l was finishing up, l was standing naked in front of the mirror shaving when Caroline walked in!! “Oh, hello Rory, don’t you look nice …. all naked and even more naked?”
I didn’t have time to grab my towel, and l had a sneaky suspicion l might not have been able to get to it in time, seeing as she was standing right beside it and looking at it, then glancing at me. Luckily l have never really been shy about my body so l just thought” Sod it!” Own it. “Hey Caroline, fancy seeing you here? I am just getting ready for my blind date.”
“Mmmmmmmm … ” Was all she said running her tongue over her lips, before catching herself and continuing … “I have just spoken to Louisa, Burke just picking them up now, and so they’ll be on their way! I think Louisa has had a drink or two!!”” Was all she said and with a quick naughty giggle slapped my bare behind and walked out laughing – l could hear her all the way down the corridor!
“Shit, a drink or two – is that bad? I mean why would Caroline say it like that. How would you know if someone has had two drinks? Does she sound drunk after just two or is she all …. stop, stop this now Rory. Get dressed, relax, enjoy the evening!”
Despite everything, l did dress up well. I had a 28 waist when l was 19, and a size 42 chest, l was shaped in some respects like a torpedo, and all the girls when they saw me in my tuxedo always commented on my smackable bum – and the advice l was given even then was to dress to the advantage. I always had to look smart for work, back then tardiness and untidiness was NOT part of my wardrobe. I bought clothing for my job with the money l had left over after paying board to my parents. I always wore smart casual wear; l didn’t own any jeans or anything of that nature for going out in only for roughing it. So that night, l was wearing some nice tight Italian cut trousers, a silk shirt and a good quality casual jacket.
Walking towards the front exit of the halls, l knew l looked good, l was wolf whistled by both sexes, now that’s a compliment. Once out, l walked down the driveway forecourt and found Burke waiting for me.
“Hey Rory, you look great, which is just as good. Louisa suggested that we go dancing after the restaurant and not see a film. Nancy and l are cool with that, you do know how to dance don’t you?”
I looked at Burke, he looked good, he was dressed to the nines and tens and elevens in trousers and a waistcoat with an open chested shirt, l could see why the girls liked him so much when he was not dressed in kitchen whites and checks!
“Dancing? Yes, of sorts, l think l can manage that. What’s she like, this Louisia Burke?”
“Well there she is check her out yourself!” He answered pointing to someone emerging from the back of the car….
My jaw dropped to the floor, and l think my eyes popped out on their stalks as l took her in … “Oh, Oh my, oh my goodness!!”
My life changed at that moment … it was literally that moment, that my mind exploded, something else did too, but more on that later!