...ate a clock in the morning like...smartphone alarm beep beeps into me ear...one hand picks up and smashes it again the wall...not so smart now is it...where am I...recessed lights in ceiling shine into me eyes...discover me pyjamas have a hood in them...fell asleep in the clothes again...where am I...not Mrs O’Brien’s b & bloody b this year... no, not for me...fine room in wan of them gombeen hotels owned by NAMA for half nawthing...open shirt buttons and spray deodorant under arms and head for the lift...close buttons, push buttons and fella in the lift mirror does the same...full Irish with bacon rashers and eggs... throw back the lugs and dive in...lash back the orange juice...parched I am...try to walk sober like, wan foot then the udder, repeat...I’m Racingman, I’m wide out...down the square check out paddys ladbrokes boyles muls get the odds... and ends... too early to go out yet...sit on bench and look at fountain knocked on for the week...the trickle, they’d needn’t have bothered their...whole week I’m here for...then light up brighten up... wink at young wan get scowl but scowl back at her... she don't know what's she missing...missing in Racingman... light another... hand shakes but 'twould by now anyways Wednesday and all... phone dying just two bars...head dying just 25 bars...need cash...act fast...shaky fingers dance on vomit-splattered keypad at hole in wall...good job don't need numbers 3, 8, 2 as they're splashed pretty bad... cash comes out crisp clean only gives 300 so go to other machine... clean pad, thick wad jammed in arse pocket but switch to front... can't be too sure... cute hoor watching ya catching ya but not me. I'm wide out me so I am, sham ya have to get outa the scratcher early to catch out Racingman...Romanian fecker murdering a violin in the Square...where’s Lee Harvey Oswald when ya need him...get the Racing Post...to look cool like...and the Star but no picture of Georgia Saipa...bring it back and get fresh one...dash into Debbinghams and when the wimmen aren’t looking over Racingman is lost in a cloud of Calvin Kyne and Ralph Lawrence eau de sweat...smelling grand...ready for the road...ready for the course...hop into taxi...sit in front..big head on him...air stinks of air freshener and stale conversation...he tells me country is fecked...emigrants should shag off home...can’t get planning...and he’s from Lagos...three ways to racecourse...green, blue and red routes...we take a bit of blue and red and he drops me in a cowfield near Castlegar church...walk that way he says... the brown route...and I walk...better now...go to ring the boys but smartphone still smarting from batin’ I gave it. Must be an app for that...see the stand ahead...walk straight...shoes covered in shite...sham says ‘anywan want to try the three card trick the three card trick, watch out Char-less the shades are lamping the scene’... don't fall for that not after last year not me cos I'm wide out...Racingman won’t fall for that...this year...in the gate...meet yer man from home he waves and says he knows a fella who knows Weld is the man...get card and biro...rip page from card and jam in raffle drum to win another shaggin’ night in a gombeen hotel...always been lucky mother said when I won the teddy bear at the sale of work but she didn't know I stole it then sold it then stole it again...Guard nods at me I nod back howya guard what does he know probably has a file on Racingman the big happy Templemore head on him...met the byes... the byes from home...lads shout yahoo at Ted Walsh and some other... twenty years since he rode her mother...run to the stand... spilling plastic pints down new Next shirt, it’ll live up to its name tomorrow...horse romps home...plastic pints go skywards...beef sandwiches all round... grease is the next stain for the Next shirt... Lads have quare wans' mobile numbers wants 200 notes for an hour of the bould thing... lads laugh when I ask for group discount...an hour I laugh, an hour of drinking time wasted...she says for 400 she’ll bate me with a whip til I cry...told her I can get a batin’ for nawthing outside Supermacs...and then the streets...Latin quarter me arse...from wan pub to another...Racingman’s head’s in a spin...time for food...tuna melt with extra dolphin...staggered up the pedestrianised streets, avoiding the bikes and the rickshaws like fecking Tianaman Square ‘tis...taxi and shows him card from hotel...Lagos man again......more stale conversation...emigrants should feck off home...he should feck off home to Carlow with all the other taxidrivers...drives me around town nine times and then drops me at gombeen hotel where room was chayper than taxi...birds are singing when me head hits the bed...zzzzzzzzzzzzz..ate a clock...smartphone about to beep its alarm, but decides not to...now that’s a smart phone...still only Thursday morning.
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