The Brush Travelogue (Nov C/W Comp)

“Maybe we should execute him. After all, we are the executive.”

The board of directors were used to Cranberry’s sour interjections. Recently, when Brian Brush the younger was almost killed while skiing in the Matterhorn, Cranberry said the papers should have headlined with:
A Brush with Death.
Still, young Brian’s behaviour was no laughing matter. After the death of the Blessed Brian Brush the older, sole control of the Brush conglomerate was passed onto the younger Brush.

“We must stop the young one’s wanderings. One of these days the private investigators will lose track of him like they did when he went caving in Indonesia and we’ll never hear from him again.” Chairman May was not amused. Behind him looking down on the gathering of members was the painted imposing figure of the Blessed Brain Brush the older. He would not be amused either. “Where has he got to this time?”

The bespectacled Internal Affairs director, Brad Claw, was a timid man and every one at the table wondered how this mild-mannered person had risen to become chief of, to all intents and purposes, the Police division of this vigorous multinational corporation.

“I-it’s OK. Mr Brush the younger was last spotted, um, down in the underworld.”

“Why does he like hanging out with the sub-species of this planet?” said May.
“Well we need his signature on the Moores-Pietersen document or the deal is off. Claw, inform the surveillance team to bring Brush in.”


Brian Brush the younger had put a fiver on the first favourite at Thirsk. He got more of a thrill from these petty bets than he did from the wheeling and dealing in his firm. There was no joy in hoovering up a smaller fish in the golden pond of high finance. It was more fun in the deep end of low society playing with small numbers. Brian would also wager than many a client in the bookmakers could crunch the numbers better than the accountants at the Federal Reserve. The camaraderie between punters was another thing he loved in bookmakers. Apart from the bookie nobody was getting rich and the hard luck or good luck stories were always entertaining. An old man sidled up to Brian out of the blue with the legend.

“I put three quid on trap 3 at the last dog race yesterday. Boof, they’re off. Halfway round the track the hare slows down. Malfunction or something. Bam. My dog is on it in a flash. First on the scene. I’m looking at fifteen quid when they announce: race void. Race void! My dog goddam caught the hare.”

You wouldn’t get a tale like that in the office. It would be all soaring figures and plunging stock.

Wherever there’s a betting shop there’s a pub. Brian entered the alehouse and ordered one of the more obscure brands of beer: Black Heart Dahlia 5.7% abv. You don’t get this concoction at the Champagne cocktail bashes thrown by the company. It’s all stuffy bores flashing their business cards completely devoid of character. On the other hand, the bar was thriving with unique individuals. The resident joker in this establishment was Len who was nicknamed Len Rules. Len Rules was busy uttering his latest offering to the congregation that crowded round him in a crescent shape.

“I’m doing some decorating next week. So I’m in the wall paper shop and I buy a tin of paint. The salesman says to me “Do you want this paint in a bag?” I says no, you crazy. Keep it in the tin.”

For Brian Brush the younger this was his idea of a dinner party. One of the patrons had brought in hot chicken wings from outside inviting Brian to partake of a portion of his food. With greasy fingers he bit into the spicy delicacy. Nearby, two regulars were engaged in a topic that Brian was sure could only be talked about in places like this.

“Women’s pyjamas are much warmer than men’s, that’s why I wear them. Granted, it takes a bit of getting used to buttoning them up. But after that they’re snug as a bug in a rug.”

“You wear women’s pyjamas?”


“I don’t believe you. Tell you what. Tomorrow morning you go down to Navid’s to buy milk and bread wearing your pyjamas. I’ll look out for you.”

“You want me to wear my pyjamas in public?”

“All women do that.”

This talk of women reminded Brian that he had an appointment with Madam Lurex. He bid the drinkers farewell and made to the boudoir of the spandex clad female.

Now in his lifetime Brian had made love to some of the most beautiful women in the world. Rich, gorgeous, bejewelled, smelling of expensive cologne yet they all left him feeling cold. Ladies of the night like Madam Lurex were more alluring in their imperfect state than the flawless through extensive re-modelling, vixens of the jet-set.

Madam Lurex had a cornucopia of blemishes on the much travelled freight train that was her body. Her skin was dotted with marks from years of hard trade. Her appearance not helped by gravity dragging down her once voluptuous chest to waist level. Brian Brush the younger cared not a jot. He preferred the engaging conversation with the madam that the lovelies could not match.

“Do you know what mean fear the most in here?” Brian shook his head.
“They fear the chap more than the clap. When I say chap I don’t mean my pimp, Larry, although he is the one who makes the chap. It’s the chap on the wall. The chap on the wall is when your time’s up, honey.”

“I’m just here, madam.”

“I know that. I just like to rattle the customer’s chain from time to time.”

Outside the door of the bordello there was a loud noise, much louder than a chap. It was a scuffle of sorts. The door sprang open revealing Larry the pimp being beaten by three men in black suits.

“Oh no, don’t tell me it’s a raid.” said Madam Lurex.

“You’re alright. They’ve came for me.”

“Have they? Well it ain’t right them beating up on Larry.”

The domineering Madam Lurex threw herself into an attack on the nurse maids of Brian Brush the younger. Using her whip as a weapon she held her own before succumbing to the superior numbers. The spooks managed to restrain the dominatrix. Brian watched this melee with much joy. As owner of one of the biggest companies in the world he was rich beyond his wildest dreams yet this scene was priceless.

13 thoughts on “The Brush Travelogue (Nov C/W Comp)”

  1. Haw, JW.

    Pure dead brilliant, so it is.

    But see? I’m gey worrit aboot the ‘chap’ bit. I doubt that Soothrons will get thon straicht aff.

    Aye fine, we’s yins a’ ken full well that:-

    ‘There was this chap at the door and when I opened i,t there was this chap there that I knew from the Bowling Club who told me that he had just won a game with a chap and lie but that he had then lost a game of dominoes because he had had to chap too often.’

    is perfectly comprehensible in wir ain leid.

    In truth, don’t change a word. pal. Maybe just give the judge and the hat which he allegedly possesses (shocking lack of apostrophe in Pseu’s comment on the post of OZ, in my opinion) a bit of a clue by glossarising* the more Jockinese bits.

    * It’s a word if google is to be believed, which it often isn’t, in my experience.

  2. Chap – to knock as in ‘someone is chappin at the door’
    or to strike the hour.

    Any others you care to expand upon? 🙂

  3. Hi Pseu.

    Just to explain my sentence in its entirety.

    Knock at the door. Man there from the bowling club. His final shot in his match had been to hit his opponent’s bool/bowl knocking it away from the jack and taking its place (‘chap and lie’). Enjoying a convivial game of dominoes afterwards, he had been unable to play at either end because the necessary dominoes were sleeping and he had been forced to indicate this by knocking his knuckles on the table and saying ‘I’m having to chap’ or ‘Chapping’.

    Interestingly, if you’re playing killer dominoes, you also have to chap to indicate that you only have one domino left, failing which you will be required to take another domino from the sleepers.

  4. Morning John,

    Quick comment before I watch the final day, sorry day three, of the Newlands test. Next Year’s Wisden will have to change a lot of records in its stats pages, so it will.

    As for the warning issued to Brush. Chap is included purely because it rhymes with clap. Consider the alternative.
    They fear the knock more than the clap.
    Knock doesn’t work. Trust me on this, I’m a writer.

    Don’t think there are any other localisms, Pseu. Boof and bam are universal, though in a 1,000 word story I have put subliminals all over the place. Did you get the connection with Mme Lurex and Larry?

  5. “… the tap more than the clap … ” ❓

    But ‘chap’ confused me – sore, cold-damaged skin, or leather leggings – sure! A bloke, obviously. But knock? Nah, never in a month of chocolate Sundaes! 😉

  6. Thanks Araminta and Bilby.

    You’re on the right tracks, Ara, vis-à-vis the Lurex connection. Larry Lurex was an experimental music project devised by Robin Cable. He enrolled three members of Queen to work on an old Beach Boys song called “I can hear Music”. As Queen’s first album was due out a pseudonym (Pseu, we love you) was needed. Larry Lurex is a play on Gary Glitter. Was thinking of uploading the song but didn’t want to make the bear angry.

  7. Why would it anger me?
    I am becoming tired of being the butt of others’ comments for imagined dislikes. You are all exceedingly ready to take offence for any imagined slight, so leave it out.

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