A Blind Fish in the Shadows
“Are there people at the jetty today, Mum?”
“There’s a few down there, luv. I think I can see Sarah Halliday. She must be with her Dad.”
“Her Dad’s always at the jetty, isn’t he?”
I knew if Mum cut our conversation short like that, there was more to the story, but she wasn’t going to tell me.
“Can people change their nickname? You know. If they don’t like it.”
“I don’t know, dear. You would probably have to move to a different town. Once something like that has stuck, it can be very hard to change.”
“Okay. I’ll have to think about it then.”
‘The Jester only makes us laugh to distract us from the great darkness in his soul.”
(4800 words – Strong Language)
Roman Fletcher had a way of getting under people’s skin. He never said anything unless he really believed it, but some things he just chose to believe because he was too drunk to remember if he did or didn’t. Some things he believed because he’d seen a documentary which made a bloody good case for it. Sometimes he just got a laugh from getting under people’s skin, but he always knew when to stop before he crossed the line. Wherever the line is.
It’s funny how the most inspiring and powerful elements of life can never be fully appreciated until they have unfolded in their entirety. The budding of a flower, the creation of a mountain, the story of a person’s life. What can seem the most ordinary of human lives- whilst being lived- can potentially reveal greater truths about a generation than the celebrated lives of the powerful, rich and famous. Ordinary human life does not begin from a template, nor does it require a marketing plan or complicated spin doctoring. Ordinary human life is real, like the life of Steffan Clopham.