Not to rub it in, but it hadn’t gone all that well for Simon. Nothing too bad, of course. I wouldn’t like to exaggerate but he always remained, how would you say it, just outside the winner’s circle. Just below the balcony where the celebrated received their applause. Not to any obvious extent. I mean he was dressed, clothed and sheltered and what more could anyone want apart from fame, recognition, applause and a box at the Royal Opera. Ok, skip the box. That would bore the pants off me as well, but it would be nice to swank about to those awful people who are always crowing about their latest slice of good fortune or hard-won success, depending on your perspective..
Anyway, getting away from the above rambling, which I admit I’ve enjoyed, and returning to the stark facts of the case. Whatever our world view, we see the evidence to support it. So Simon, discretely filled with envy and disappointment, talked of the world as though it would pay the price dearly for ignoring his unique talents, and Peggy Squire for rejecting his proposal and marrying that guy who had a vulgar but successful garage in the centre of town and drove a Jaguar. “What was with that mustache anyway”
“Not looking good” he loved to say as he read the newspaper. “What’s that Si”, said his mate Derek, also blessed with just the right cocktail of conceit and bad luck. “The housing markets gone to pot. I can see some serious rioting in the not too distant future. All these people taking out those reckless loans. What did they expect”.
“Like the one they wouldn’t give you Si” quipped Derek, before taking a protective sip of his whisky and ginger. Insight and misfortune make poor bedfellows and drink is one of the few things which can stop them arguing. “I didn’t really want it” said Simon. “I was just testing the market”. “Ye right” said Derek.”
Simon was the assistant manager of the sample room at some paper merchants. In truth, only two people worked in the sample room, and he was the junior of the pair, but assistant manager sounded better than just saying assistant. His brother: recklessly successful, was a stockbroker in New York, who seems to have ducked and dived his way to an apartement over looking Central Park and whose wife looked suspiciously like a super model. Never rubbed it in mind, but some comparisons were inevitable. “You’ve got to love family. They always make you feel so good about yourself”, he thought darkly.
To distract himself from the consequences of his reflections he got his lottery ticket out and checked the numbers on his clever phone thing. He had some trouble making any sense of them. All his numbers seemed to be there. He kept looking and then his hand was shaking so much he couldn’t get the bloody things to stay still . There was only one winner the site told him calmly, and he was now a multi-millionaire.
He’d gone a bit pale, and Derek asked him if he was Ok. “Ye, I’m fine ” he said finishing his drink. Already he was gathering himself to collect his winnings. First things first. He was going to buy that restaurant beside Mr Swanky Pants garage, and get himself a Bentley. It was about time that Peggy learnt she had made the biggest mistake of her life when she saddled herself with that loser instead of him. Perhaps he’d grow a mustache.