Richie had set his phone up to wolf whistle every time a woman liked him back in whatever app of desperation he was signed up to that week. Six times it went off in that hour, and each time Richie smirked at the group and took himself out of lad’s banter to deal with what he termed “wench admin”.
Eventually Duncan cracked and asked what he put in his messages.
‘Honeyed words, my boy,’ Richie said. ‘I am the silver fingered typist. You want some lessons?’
Billy rolled his eyes. ‘He sends them a dick pic, it’s all he ever does.’
Richie said, ‘It’s not a dick pic. It’s called being upfront. It’s a shagging app, so why all this bullshit about holding hands and favourite films?’
Johnny butted in. He said, ‘This reminds me of Old Shocky. I was working in a pub kitchen. Old Shocky was a freelance dude, came in from time to time if the proper chef was off sick. We didn't call him Shocky because of his mad scientist hair.’
Johnny sat up, then waited till everyone was paying attention.
‘I met Shocky after I missed the last bus; he let me crash on his sofa. So I wake up, he’s there in his boxers stood at the window. One second later, he whips them down, whips open the curtains, then starts doing some strange weird Yoga shit, starkers in the window.’
‘Turns to me then, he does – still starkers – tells me he’s trying to get the Bible bashers to stop calling.’
Johnny grinned Richie’s way. ‘The reason for my story though – he had the same idea as you. This was pre-Internet mind, so there’s Old Shocky, in the park, in his mac, in his motorbike helmet, on the lookout for a jogger or young lady on the way to work…’
Silence for a moment, then Billy said, ‘He was…a flasher?’
‘Bingo. But that’s not why we called him Shocky.’ He grinned again at Richie. ‘So it’s his last time out, and he meets this woman, young mother, with a double pushchair. I guess he figures what can she do, has to stick with the pushchair. Only she charges him, with the pushchair. Old Shocky, he has no time for nothing 'cept running, and there he is, old fella flapping, then boom! back of the ankles with the pushchair, down he goes.'
'Maybe he thought it finally paid off, he met someone as horny as him, that’s why she was stood over him naked on the ground.’
Johnny waited for the sniggering to stop. He shook his head.
He said, ‘Boom! Forty thousand volts through a place forty thousand volts shouldn't go.'
The circle of lads winced in unison and took part in a synchronised leg cross.
Johnny said, 'Once the feeling came back, he flips over, starts crawling, and then boom, forty thousand volts through a second place forty thousand volts should not go.'
At that moment, Richie’s phone wolf whistled again. Everyone stared at him.
‘Not going to get that?’ Billy said.
Richie didn’t seem to hear.