Not a psychotic maniac.
“You are a freak magnet. Every time I’ve been out with you, you’ve attracted some nutter” said Misssy's friend on a break in Edinburgh.
He’s right. There’s the She-Beast that threatened to beat Misssy and her sister up in an Aberdeen harbour bar, countless half naked nutjobs and madwomen on public transport and now today’s nutter; a man obsessed with space.
Misssy and chums are in The Stand, Edinburgh’s dedicated comedy club, preparing to watch Red Raw, the weekly stand-up platform for aspiring comedians. The club is small, and packed. On the door there’s a notice that says, “Standing Room Only”. They are not wrong. In fact, there is only really standing room if everyone left standing does it on one leg.
After the first set of three comedians, there is a fifteen minute break. People move outside to smoke, go downstairs to wee and shuffle over to the bar to refill glasses. After a shift in the sea of people, Misssy finds herself with an excellent spot propped up against a column and able to see the stage clearly. Fifteen minutes later, a man in a red v-neck jumper who looks not unlike former Bullseye host and Northern club comedian, Jim Bowen, crosses the room and walks up to Misssy, finally resting his face two inches from hers with his eyes staring blankly into her eyes.
He says nothing.
Misssy looks back at him and says, “Yes, can I help you?”
The bespectacled Peter Sutcliffe whines, clearly exasperated that his mere physical presence has been insufficient to get his desired result, “That spot was mine. I was standing there”
Misssy replies after a second or two of being taken aback, “Oh? Were you?”
The Pringle-jumpered Dennis Nielsen continues unfazed, inching closer and motioning downwards, “Yes, I was. That’s my spot. You're on my spot.”
Misssy backs away slightly, pressing the back of her head into the column, “Are you wanting me to move?”
The middle-aged Ted Bundy waves his hands about in a forced nonchalance, “No-no..no! it’s fine. It’s just that that was my spot.”
Misssy stares at him in confusion, “Are you sure?”
The serge trouser wearing Ed Gein shakes his head, “No, I’m fine. That was my place but no, no, it’s OK. It's OK....”
Misssy relaxes slightly and unsticks her skull from the column bricks, “OK, then. If you’re sure now...”
The anorak be-clad Zodiac Killer moves off, “OK, no it's my spot but I'm fine.”
Misssy bemusedly smiles, "OK then!"
Misssy's accompanying friend, Oscar’s Mama, stares after the departing John Hinckley and turns round to her, “You were never going to let him stand there were you?”
“I dunno. That was weird. I might have but I don’t know. My God he’s still staring at me! Don’t look!”
Oscar’s Mama looks round “Where??”
She spots the erstwhile Mark Chapman.
“Don’t look! He’ll come back.”
The pair's respective husbands, Meeester and Rally Stu come back from the bar. The girls tell them about Son of Sam and his floor space issues.
“Don’t look!” Misssy says as they both turn round to look at an ever more intense looking Jack the Ripper staring menacingly in their direction.
The comedians come back on and the second session gets underway. Within minutes Charles Manson walks back over and stands in front of Misssy, his back inches away from her nose, squarely blocking her entire view of the stage and, indeed, world at large.
Meeester steps over and has a quick word.
“It’s just that, this was my spot. I went to the toilet and she took it.” says Fred West.
“It isn’t your spot now. You are standing right in front of my wife. She can’t see.” says Meeester.
Norman Bates moves slightly and Misssy peeks round.
“I can see, it’s OK!” Misssy says, not wanting a knife in her throat.
The on-stage show continues and the comedy loving Jeffrey Dahmer continues to stand unreasonably close in front of Misssy. Misssy ignores him and imagines that she is listening to the radio instead. Meeester offers to intervene, but she asks him to ignore him.
After five minutes, the pint-swilling John Wayne Gacy turns round to Misssy, inches close to her face, and says “OK, are you OK? Are you alright?”
Misssy edges back, “*Sigh* Erm....Ye-es? What?”
Meeester and Rally Stu bristle and stare.
“Ok OK I’m going, I’m going” he says, holding up both hands in a surrender. Edinburgh's answer to David Berkowitz turns to Meeester, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I’m going now...I'm going. That was my spot.”
“OK. See ya!” Meeester replies.
Harold Shipman shiftily moves off to the back of the room and downs his pint, staring at Misssy icily.
“You attract nutters....” says Rally Stu.
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