“Oh Why Oh Why did I decide to go to the Cheese Cutters Ball dressed as a Harlequin?"
It was quite out of character. I’m not even a fan of rugby. You beaver away doing a humdrum job as a data scientist, well that’s what they call it now; when I first strode down the corridors of Head Office, we were called filing clerks; but we did hoover up statistics to help our salesforce qualify for their exotic overseas conventions.
Mind you, quite why anyone would want to spend a week in Outer Mongolia with work colleagues is quite beyond me! Then salespeople are a strange breed without whom we might all be out of work. Even a career pen pusher relies on a motivated salesforce to shift sufficient quantities of Parker Sonnets to function efficiently.
Anyway that was my rationale for accepting the boss’s invitation to attend the Ball as the official HO representative. How was I to know it would lead me out of my comfort zone?
The slip of paper I discovered in the pocket of my costume might not have been genuine. It simply said, “meet me at the Opera House at 7.00 pm on Wednesday” I didn’t recognise the number. I even wondered if a previous hirer had left it there.
When I returned the costume to the National Theatre, the manager was visibly irritated at the suggestion. She insisted they dry cleaned costumes after every hire. I apologised for casting aspersions but that got me thinking about the colleagues I had danced with during the evening; to show the human side of Head Office you understand; but most wore masks; some may even have been blokes.
Nevertheless, I felt I owed it to my boss to text the number confirming I would be there wearing a US Grand Canyon T shirt which I reckoned was about as far removed from a harlequin outfit as you could get. Also, I thought my sartorial choice might help me blend in with tourists as I waited outside the London Coliseum on St Martin’s Lane. It didn’t. I couldn’t have felt more conspicuous if I had arrived dressed as a pantomime horse.
As I read through the convoluted plot of “Cosi fan tutte” on the billboard, there was a beep on my mobile phone. It said, ‘How many tickets have you bought?’ Stupid as it may seem, it hadn’t occurred to me to buy tickets for the show; an oversight which I immediately rectified at the box office although it would have been cheaper to hire a top of the range performance driven catamaran for a week.
But I’ve always wanted to see a live performance of Mozart’s comic masterpiece. Now I can. The performance is for Thursday 10th March 2022 at 7.00 pm. It gave me some satisfaction to reply. “The current performance is sold out, so I have decided to take someone else next year but thanks for the recommendation.”
This Decamot was inspired by the following items:
Fan, hoover, catamaran, cheese cutter, beaver, harlequin, Mongolia, data scientist, Canyon, opera house