Thursday, February 4, 2010

A note on being bored working in a seaside gift shop in 1999.

Pick the lacy cobwebs
from the ‘Please ring for customer service’ bell.
Re-arrange the sympathy cards in colour order,
from blue through grey.
Raid the stockroom fridge;
Make cup-a-soups to fool
your growling stomach.
Suck Nutella fingers
straight from the jar.
Try on the wigs.
Re-stack the plastic champagne flutes
filled with yellow-ish wax gel
to make Millennium Champagne Candles,
£3.99, or 3 for £10.
Re-discover your obsessive
compulsion for alphabetical order.
Arrange the seaside sticks of rock
into pink,
striped,
pink-striped,
fruit,
peppermint,
bagged,
dummy-shaped.
Knock over a stand
of personalised Winnie the Pooh key rings
and put them all back.
Start with Abbie,
end with Zach.
Adjust the silver star ‘sprinkles’
on the black tablecloth
on the millennium table display
and add more party poppers.
Create a Subbuteo-style game
using glass nuggets (remember them?)
and packets of silica gel.
Display the mermaid figurines
in height order,
like marine suspects.
Shake all snow globes,
tap each captain’s bell with a fingernail,
straighten every fisherman book-end,
watch the lifebuoy clock.

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