Weds 23rd August 2000

2249 Hrs

You know you’re having a bad day when the rest of the family are acting worse than Miller!

I was sitting in the office earlier, working out how I should best liberate customers from the Queen’s legs on Friday, when I noticed a little hoody raiding the till. I didn’t go out and unleash hell unto the fiend because the thief was none other than my baby sister Marie. By the time I dashed out of the office, she was stood on a chair, playing the fruit machine. I told the little brat to get off at once and return whatever money she had left to the till. I won’t repeat what she said back to me. Had anyone been witness to it, they would have thought that she was the vile mouthed girl out of the Exorcist, but they would have been wrong. She is not possessed by the Devil, but possessed by my Mother’s nature. Of all of us, little Marie is truly an O’Shea child. After she had stopped shouting, and accusing me of getting in the way of her winning the jackpot, I told her once more to get off the chair and get out of the bar. She then slapped me and told me to f-off or she’d do me.
I had no choice but to go and tell on her. I couldn’t find Mom as she was out walking her demon dog, but Curly told me that he had seen Dad go down into the cellar.

As I made my way down the deadly loose stairs that descend into our pit of a cellar, I saw my Father crouched over one of our beer barrels, with a large tube in his hand. It didn’t take me too long to realize that he was putting liquids back into the barrel. Watering the beer down would have been bad enough, but Dad was actually putting old beer, from the slope bucket behind the bar, back into the barrel.

‘DAD!’ I shouted, immediately displaying my utter contempt for what he was doing ‘what do you think you are playing at?’

You would have thought that he would be all coy and embarrassed at being caught doing something so deceitful and disgusting, but then I suppose you don’t know my Dad. Of course he wasn’t remorseful. He tried to pass it off as normal pub practice and then rounded on me for shouting at him.

‘If you get caught doing this, we would be fined massively. I could lose my license!’

‘Everyone does it J. I can’t afford to pay the breweries prices. They’re way over the top. I need to keep the costs down some way or another.’

‘I don’t care Dad. You’ll get caught. You AWLAYS get caught!’

‘I’ve got worse things to worry about that the brewery finding out’


‘Look, never you fucking mind what! I’m doing what is needed to be done to keep this place going! What are you doing, how are you helping? All you do is moan, moan, moan. I bet you’ve come down here to moan about something or someone’

‘No I haven’t’

‘So what do you want?’

‘I came down to ask if you wanted a cup of tea actually’

‘You lying little bastard. I can tell when you’re lying. Stop worrying about what I’m, or anyone else is doing, and be more concerned about yourself! What are you doing useful at the moment?’

‘I’ve been looking over the books’

‘How’s that going to help us’

‘Well it’s what managers do. They look at the books’

‘Managers get people in. Managers get money in! What are you doing to promote Clint’s karaoke competition? It’s the first heat on Sunday and so far I’ve only seen your brother running around putting posters up.’

‘Well I’m doing something much better than that. I’m doing something on Friday that will have this place heaving’

‘What’s that then?’

‘You’ll see’

‘So you’re doing nothing then’

‘I fecking well am! So get back to sticking the old fag ashed beer back into the barrels, and leave me to act like the only professional person working in this place!’

So after putting my father well and truly in his place I stomped back upstairs, just in time to see Marie collect her 150.00 jackpot out of the fruit machine and celebrate by giving me a one finger salute.

A couple of hours later I thought I had a reason to be happy. I should have learnt by now however that fate conspires against me.

At about three o’clock this afternoon we had quite a few people come in for food. The weather had been glorious this morning and so Babbacombe was busy with tourists, but when it started to rain we benefited from some of those people coming into here for shelter. So once again Kung Fu Phil was running around the kitchen like a headless chicken when the food orders started coming in fast. A particular couple, an old pair in their 50’s, ordered sausages in buns. I was busy serving drinks while Clint took orders, Curly brought out the food and Miller slept in bed. I imagine Dad was still in the cellar fiddling the drinks. Anyway, I had to go into the kitchen to get some glasses out of the washer where I was confronted by Kung Fu Phil’s bare ass. Not only was I staring directly as Phil’s saggy, battered love cushions, but I was shocked to find him mincing around the kitchen with a large sausage wedged up his bum like a tail, wagging side to side.

‘What the HELL are you doing Phil?’

Phil dropped the meat and turned around in surprise. Now you would think that he would be all coy and embarrassed at being caught doing something so disgraceful and disgusting, but then I suppose you don’t know our chef. Of course he wasn’t remorseful. He tried to pass it off as normal kitchen practice and then rounded on me for shouting at him.

‘This is what you should expect if you insult a chef’ he shouted, whilst wedging the sausage back between his bottom in defiance.

‘How have you been insulted Phil?’

‘The bitch sent her meal back’


‘She said it was ‘too cold’ he answered in a mock feminine voice.

‘Well that sounds fair enough’

‘Well if she’d had eaten it when Pubic head brought it out to her, instead of chatting away to lover boy, it would have been warm enough! Well if she’s gonna talk shit, she can fucking eat it too!’

At this point Phil yanked the sausage from his arse and rubbed his tiny knob on it for good measure. He then slapped it back into the bun it had originally came from and shouted for Curly, who promptly appeared.

‘Take this back out to the ol’cow and tell her to enjoy’

I quickly snatched the plate off of Curly and told him he would do no such thing.

‘Get your stuff Phil, YOU’RE FIRED. Now fuck off you spotted arse weirdo’

‘You’re not the boss of me, you jumped up, spoilt little mummy boy’

It took every last restraint in my body not to ram the hotdog into his face.

‘You’re quite right, I am not your boss, because YOU’RE FUCKING FIRED. NOW PISS OFF!’

It looked like Phil was about to advance on me and try some of his moves, but luckily for him my Dad appeared.
‘What’s all this fucking noise about? All we can hear out there is fucking this, and fucking that. Watch your fucking language will you!’

‘You’re boy ere has just told me that I’m fired’

‘You’ve done what Jacob?’

‘That’s right Dad. I’ve just walked in here and found gay boy there with a customers sausage up his chocolate factory. Of course I’ve fecking sacked him!’

‘You did what Phil?’

‘That’s right. That stupid old bird out there was pulling my plonker, taking the piss and I was showing her what we do to people like her in the trade! So Johnny, is Jacob right? Am I fired?’

To my astonishment Dad yanked the plate out of my hands, handed it to Curly and told him to give it back to the silly old twat. He then apologized to Phil about me, and ordered me out of the kitchen. In case I didn’t make myself clear, he basically told Phil that he was not fired and made me look like a tit. I left with the image of Phil’s smug face violently burnt into my mind.

As I walked out of the kitchen I saw this silver haired lady delighted to have her meal back. I felt sick, but then I didn’t know whether to feel a little better when the dirty old cow started making crude oral sexual gestures with the hotdog, for the benefit of the old man. My stomach however couldn’t take anymore and I quickly took off after my Dad, leaving Clint to man the bar.

‘What the hell was that about Dad? You’ve just made me look like some sort of moron. You should have been as eager to drown the stupid fecker in the dish water as I was’

‘Oh Jacob, you are so inexperienced aren’t you. This is how the trade works. The beer fiddling, the sausage abuse, it’s all part of the trade. You just need to wise up’

‘That’s bullshit Dad. Fucking rubbish. You know what, I’ve had enough. You can stick this place up YOUR ARSE! I’m going’

I then turned my back on my Dad to storm off but he grabbed a tight hold of my shoulder

‘Look Jacob, if you go, we have no licensee. No licensee, no business. No business, no me!’

‘What do you mean?’

‘I mean without the business the family is out of a home!’

‘You said ‘no me’

‘No me, no us, no nothing. That is what I meant! You’re not going to do that to your family are you?’

‘Why didn’t you back me up Dad’ I asked, and then came the truth. It appeared that King Fu Phil has been getting us all of the food on the cheap! From where, Dad doesn’t know, or wouldn’t admit to.

‘We’ve got the Barkers birthday party on Sunday and we wouldn’t find another chef in time for that, or food as cheap. So Jacob, forget the stupid woman out there, and worry about your family instead. We need Sunday to go well for us. I need that money. We’re losing dough left right and centre. I’ve got bills coming out of my ears and there’s hardly any money coming in to keep us above water. Please son, just help me out’

Dad looked so deflated, so downtrodden that I just nudged my head and we left it at that. Dad covered the rest of my shift so that I didn’t have to see the stupid sausage jockey in the kitchen again today.

Unfortunately that wasn’t the last falling out me and my Pappy had, because not an hour ago, we had our final bust up of the day. I found myself working again behind the bar because Miller was AWOL. He was last seen dressed in a suit, heading into town. Curly said he was on the pull and was playing the part of a jilted groom. I would call him utterly pathetic but I know the stupid gimp will con some stupid, legless old tart into sleeping with him, via his routine.
So I was stood behind the bar when a big gang of kids came in, looking all of 14 years old. One spotty face twonk came strutting up to the bar and ordered 20 pints for him and the rest of his classroom of friends. I gave him a hearty laugh and then told the lot of’em to piss off. As the mob of bad hair cuts and filthy ragged kids vacated the pub, my Dad appeared and asked where they were going. I laughed and told him how they had tried to order 20 pints for their first round. I momentarily thought my Dad might join in with my laughing, at the nerve of the children but then I should have remembered who I was talking to. He went mad.

‘DO YOU SEE? This is what I mean. You have absolutely no fucking idea how to run a pub do you!’

‘What now? Surly you can’t have expected me to serve them. If the old Bill came in they’d have shut us down in a heartbeat, possibly even arresting me!’

‘Arrest you. Fucking drama Queen. When was the last time a copper came in here? When was the last time any fucker has come in here for a drink on the night time? The Police would have thanked us! We’d be keeping’em off of the streets, keeping them away from annoying nice little old ladies. We’d be doing a fucking public service and making a few hundred quid. You’ve got a hell of a lot to learn. Kids are our best customers. All that money, but no bills to pay, no family to maintain, mortgage or anything. All that lovely money that they just wanna spend on getting pissed! Once they find somewhere that’ll serve them they will keep going every night like it’s Byker fucking Grove! You’ve just lost me a fortune you stupid moron!’

With that I dropped my dish cloth and told my Dad he could close up because I have had enough for today. There is no reasoning with the man! Come the weekend, when we are enjoying the fruits of my master plan, he will be praising me to high Heaven, worshipping me like the business God that I am. Until then I do not wanna hear another word from his stupid mouth!

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