Junk Yard Dog

Near the beginning of March restrictions had begun in order to contain and stop the spread of community induced Covid-19 virus. Many non-essential stores were now closed or in the process of closing; food stores remained open but with the word of the century – “social distancing”.  No longer were you allowed to sit inside or outside a café; some allowed you to walk in and pick up your beverage while others only allowed you to drive up to the window but with the caveat that you must be in a vehicle, not walk up or be on a bicycle or motorbike. That last part still does not have a lot of logic to it.

So the scene is set.

Enter Mark.

He presented in a dark suit as if going to a business meeting, how odd to be so dressed up for a very casual meet and have a coffee. So I switched my critical brain off and said – well maybe he is going to a meeting after this. Even at a distance my radar told me this was a mistake, there was something just not right and soon I observed he looked nothing like his online picture. He was much older, hair thinning with yellowed teeth and some were missing.   A good friend later said to me “always give a firm time limit”, “one hour”.  Check!  I will remember that advice for next time.

We had conversed on and off via POF – a well-known and used dating site. He presented himself as British, a writer of crime stories for magazines over the years. Ok, sounds plausible.  His picture was presentable.  I had traveled to Victoria, BC in March just as more restrictions were coming into place as mentioned above. We could still meet for a coffee and remain at a distance of six feet.  Why not, this was simply meet and have a coffee.

A local Starbucks still offered walk in service.  He was good enough to buy my coffee but the price of admission was not worth it.  We found a bench nearby in the local park, he sat on one end and I the other and for next three hours he talked non-stop about himself.  I should have stopped it after one hour but he talked so rapidly without really taking a breath that I would have had to actually say – OK, stop, thank you very much, I have to go now.  I did not wish to be rude.

It was an interesting experience in human behaviour and lack thereof.  He was so engrossed in himself and speaking about his life and friends that any interjection on my part was basically not acknowledged.

What did I learn of and about this person?

  • He gleefully told about his ex-wife,  she is a family doctor who on settlement of their divorce paid him $785,000.00
  • Lives in a rented house.
  • Drives an older basic Hyundai
  • Does not write articles anymore and only did so part-time
  • Was a stay at home father while he was married
  • Talked mostly about his friend Malcolm (who is his best friend in England) with whom he played a practical joke on every single day and laughed and laughed as he told these stories
  • Skirted around any question I had about what he had done previously for work, travel etc.
  • Spoke about growing up and living in East London, he knew gangs there but he was never part of that
  • Spoke how growing up in that type of environment made him very savvy, could spot a con and a crook.  Not that “he was any of that” he said.  (The more I let him talk the more he revealed).
  • He spoke with a heavy cockney accent and used the F word eighteen times in three hours.

Finally I decided I had heard and learned enough, was polite and said it was time for me to go.

He was and is a Junk Yard Dog

I did meet one other person while on holiday, was not going to but thought what the heck it cannot possibly be any worse than the JYD. 

Enter Greg.

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