queer (Non PC) strange as folk
Have you ever witnessed something that didn’t make sense, something that shouldn’t have happened, but did? Have you ever seen your mates do something so out of character that even 25 years later you still scratch your head about it? Something that makes you cringe and wonder W.T.F?
This is another true story; but you wouldn’t think so because it’s so bizarre. Rest assured, it’s not one of those, ‘my cousin Liam,’ stories where one of the protagonists is actually the story teller in disguise. No, this is a real story in which two of mates did something that even now they probably still cannot explain!
My favourite city in the entire wide world is Wellington. I’ve ever been lucky enough to travel a little and I have never felt as comfortable anywhere else as I have in Wellington. During the 1980’s and 1990’s I lived in Wellington for over ten years and I loved every second of it.
Despite its beauty, Wellington is more about it’s diversity and tolerance. It richness and vibe; about it’s performing arts scene, about it’s fashion and people. Wellington is the nations capital and during the time I lived there many of the large corporate’s still had their Head Office’s in Wellington. Sadly most have now migrated north to Auckland.
Wellington is about it’s people and most people are just passing through. You rarely find someone born and bred in Wellington. The weather is nearly always crap; if its not blowing from the south, its blowing from the north and if its not blowing its raining. But whenever you get a day such as the one in the above photo you rejoice. You sing the praises of the Lord and give thanks for being alive. It’s pristine and sublime.
You need a sense of humour to live in Wellington, and perhaps that goes somewhat toward explaining what my rugby mates Parky and Chaz (names changed) did one Thursday night.
After a week of rain, that Thursday night we trained in the Saw Dust pit. A concrete dimly lit space under our Club Rooms 30 metres wide by 60 metres long. It was a dire place which we all hated. Although with a big game on Saturday we needed some contact time and the Saw Dust pit was the only place on offer. Although the floor was covered with about 30cm of sawdust the pit was about welcoming as the Vatican Police would be to a nudist wandering through The Sistine Chapel (just don’t look up).
At the end of a pretty rigorous session, not only did I have bruises from banging into the concrete walls and being dumped on the sawdust floor, I had sweat and saw dust in every single orifice you could think of:
- eyes – yep
- nostrils – uh huh
- throat – could hardly utter a whisper without coughing up wood
- mouth – of course
- butt crack – half a wheel barrows worth
- todgerville – very uncomfortable indeed
- toes, ears and underarms – fashionably splattered
During showering; my team mates Chaz and Parky asked me, ‘Roly you wanna come into town with us?’
‘No thanks,’ I answered, ‘I’ll just have a couple of quiets at the Brod – don’t really want to go into town.’
Thursday night after training it was usual practice to have a couple of beers afterward, as we would all be in bed early (or at least should be in bed) on Friday nights in preparation for Saturday’s game.
‘Why are you guys heading into town anyway,’ I asked while drying and then putting on my undies.
‘We’re going to the Bamboo Club and having a competition to see who can pick up a guy first!
‘Fuck off,’ I spat.
‘Serious,’ Parky beamed, ‘we’ve got a hundred bucks on it.’
‘You guys are crazy,’ I laughed, never believing that they were serious.
But they were.
According to the record both Parky and Chaz did pick up two guys at Wellington’s Bamboo Club (the most prominent gay bar at that time), although Chaz was deemed to be the winner as he managed to snog his man on the dance floor.
Both men were married. I didn’t believe then, and nor do I now believe they were gay or bi-sexual. I have played with many guys over the years and I would certainly consider both Parky and Chaz as hard bastards.
So how do you explain such an aberration in their behaviour? Maybe I am naive, maybe I am blind or stupid, but the only thing I can put it down too, is the allure of beating a mate, and winning a $100 bet. I also put it down to the sawdust somehow getting inside their cranial cavity.
Kia Ora Roly