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Salient: Victoria University Students' Newspaper. Vol. 24, No. 11. 1961

Female Tribulations Again

Female Tribulations Again

The shop telephone rang, and I picked up the receiver and said in my "best" voice;

"Good evening, L____

For a second there was silence from the other end-silence, that is, all but the sound of a distant radio. Silence was suddenly followed by two startlingly loud hiccoughs, and a drunken male voice inquired:

"'Ow i you?"

Rather bewildered, and not quite knowing the answer-yet knowing I must say something, I merely repeated the name of the shop. All I could get out of the other end was a series of very vulgar hiccoughs'. So I had another attempt-I said (stupidly),

"Are you there?"

And of course my antagonist replied "Naw."

"Did you want 87435, L ?"

"'Ello! Hie ... hie .. ." Then I heard a loud riotous yell, and was compelled to withdraw from the sight and hearing of two perplexed and rather disapproving customers. By now my feeling was less of embarrassment, and rather of annoyance, and extreme curiosity.

"Who did you want to speak to?" I inquired, as courteously as seemed appropriate. After a few more screams, howls and hiccoughs, the fellow said;

"Gemmethemanager . . . I wanna speaks the manager ..."

And when I had translated this into English, I breathed a relieved sigh, and said:

"Yes, certainly, just a moment please." Anxious to get away from the 'phone, I drew away from the receiver, when suddenly I heard the male voice, startiingly sober, talking:

"Hey, Jan, cut it out . . . are you there? Jan? Hey, listen . .

Well, after all, I should know my brother's brand of humour after 20 years!