hi, im a girl and im getting off a train. i dont want to be off the train, but it hasnt moved for over three minutes and theyve just announced problems with one of the doors. primarily im getting off to peer down the platform and see if i can see whats going on. also im getting off because the train is rather crowded as it is in the morning, around eight thirty and everyone wants to get to the same place as me. if you want another reason why, there is a girl who ive been alkwardly chatting to while the train has been stopped. i dont know her very well. shes the girlfriend of a friend of my boyfriend, not one of his good friends and weve only met once or twice in a pub. these meetings were mostly in large groups and ive never really said more than a hi directly to her. she didnt stand out in any particular way, not making any comments that stood out, and not dishing out or recieving any talk of cosiquence. this may be the reason its so alkward. although i like her i just dont know anything more than her face. we both silently know this but neither will ignore each other being in such close seperation. admittedly i have seen her on this train before and pretended not to notice, burying my head in a paper. primarily to avoid what we now have. i also wonder if shell think im socially inept if i dont make small talk which i have a real problem with. so here we are, three minutes earlier.

hi

hi, sophie isnt it

yeah... god packed today isnt it, i didnt think i was going to make it

yeah its been waiting here for a few minutes, i dunno whats up... you often get this train then?

yeah ive been getting it for a while, since ive been working in town...

oh yeah, where do you work...

and so on until we ran out of the formalities and the conversation ground down to breaking point. she had spoken last and so it was my turn, but i didnt have anything. stepping of and playing the part of informant was effective in getting the ping pong going again.

can you see anything

nope... theres people off the train a few doors down, but it just looks like theyre doing the same as me

the announcement said sometings up with a set of doors

yeah i cant see much

probably best to stay on the train just in case

my phone rang. it was mum. thank fuck. something had rescued me. my mum is a nervous person, who feels the need to check things with me even when they hardly have any effect on me. this was one of those times. it was instantly frustrating.
...i know thats what dad said and he does want to...im not going to need it now...cos i dont live there...
then the doors were beeping. i lanched myself in the direction of the train. most people when on a phone have unconcious habits. mine is to wander and i was a good three strides away from the train. the irrational fear of missing the doors had made me more earnest than i needed to be. i crashed into this girl with some force. the pain started. my head hurt. hers bled, from the nose. the noise stopped, the doors closed and i saw my phone on the platform outside.

fuck, my phone

fuck your phone... my fucking face...

she spluttered this through red teeth. i was now the focus of everyone on the train, and i couldnt think through my ache.

my head hurts too, its not just you...

yeah... youre not bleeding all over the fucking pla...my tooth oh my god i lost a fucking tooth you slag oh my god what am i going to do now i cant believe you fucking knocked out one of my teeth shit what am i going to look like im going to need surgery youre going to fucking pay for it does someone have a fucking tissue oh my god ive got no teeth...

a woman spoke up after handing her a tissue, something about he amount of swearing. this wasnt wise. i never found my phone. cost me two hundred pounds that phone.

Yesterday's. 2007
© eric pentle. all editions signed by the artist.
Words written by the artist.