The magical journey begins

It was early on a Saturday afternoon back in the December of 2012, when a whirlwind struck without warning, right in my living room, and my world was suddenly changed.

There I was, just sitting there on my couch, with my TV remote control in my hand, and my TV switched on to a channel that just so happened to be showing the previews for all of the days upcoming football fixtures.

“What a bit of luck” I probably remarked to myself, as that was exactly the way I liked spending the early part of my Saturday afternoons.- A coffee in my other hand, and my legs raised up on that recliner bit that popped up from the front of the couch and allowed my knees to relax just as much as my arse.

As a stand-up comedian, Friday’ and Saturday nights are the bedrock of my working week, often being the most demanding in terms of late nights, and shall we say – slightly more intoxicated audiences. This particular weekend I was doing shows at the internationally famous Comedy Store in the heart of London’s bustling West End. I had done two shows on the Friday night, an early and a late show, which had wrapped up at about half past one in the morning, which meant that I had got back home a smidgin before 3am.

I love the work, especially when at The Comedy Store, and don’t mind the late nights. But if I wasn’t working away from home for the weekend, I relished my slow moving lazy Saturday afternoons on my couch with the football, just chilling out and conserving my energy in preparation for another couple of shows, and another late night.

I liked my couch. It was over five years old, and despite it’s low price tag had aged very well. . It had kept its shape, was still pretty damn clean and in good nick, and with no creaks from the springs when you plonked your arse down on it, it had proven to be a pretty good buy for the price.

Little did I know though, that at that precise same moment that I was sat back enjoying being the king of my – admittedly fairly standard two-bedroom first-floor, and rented – castle, my wife was in the bathroom on her own pissing on a stick. A stick that was about to inform me that my Saturday afternoons relaxing on my couch and enjoying the football on my TV were well and truly numbered, and that over the next few years the poor old couch wouldn’t know what had hit it… or jumped on it… or dribbled or spilt something down in between its cushions not to be found for the best part of a month.

I didn’t know that my wife was in the bathroom pissing on a stick – I didn’t have the faintest foggiest of clues. At no point did she boldly announce – “Just off to the bathroom to piss on a stick darling!” – She didn’t elude to even the slightest possibility that this might be an undertaking that she would feel the need to, well undertake I suppose. I was in the dark, which is nothing new, but this time it wasn’t just visuals that were down, audio communications had also been restricted due to covert urination operations for which I apparently did not seem to have clearance.

The first I knew about it was when she came running in from the bathroom to the living room shouting at me that she had in fact just been pissing on a stick, whilst waving at me the very stick that she had just been pissing on – I can only imagine that she must have had some internal bulb go off letting her know that it might be wise to do this.

I know that its commonly accepted that men have a man drawer of man things in the bedroom, well women have a woman drawer too. Its quite a bit larger, in fact it’s a walk-in affair, and its called the bathroom. I have maybe six things in the bathroom, and one of those things is just a thing that’s used for keeping my other five things separate from her things. My wife on the other hand has the contents of a small pharmacy in there, and as luck had it, one of those things was am emergency stick that she could piss on if the urge took her – which it evidently had.

Its amazing isn’t it – Its the 21st century, the miracle of life and all that, the magic of discovering that you are going to be parents, the technologically advanced world we live in – iPhones, drones, self driving cars just around the corner – and for many of us that moment of discovery still comes down to just pissing on a stick.

I think that the way it is meant to work though, is that she is meant to come running in to the living room shouting that she has just pissed on a stick, we are meant to stand there staring at the stick that she has just pissed on, before jumping around the place and getting either excited, or worried, or emotional, or terrified, or suicidal, or perhaps a combination of several of those depending on your own personal circumstances of course.

Unfortunately though, being blind, and so not actually being able to see the stick in question, meant that there was a certain amount of trust required on my part when the only evidence to her claims were of a purely visual nature. And what I learned on that early Saturday afternoon back in the December of 2012, is that I don’t actually trust my wife at all really.

At first I thought she was winding me up. I mean, as I said, there was no bloody warning that she was in the bathroom doing this, it came right out of the blue, and my initial reaction was one of – “Ah, yeah, nice one. Ha Ha! Pull the other one. Pregnant, yeah right. And I’m King Gullible of Gullibolia, the most gullible of all the Gullibolians!”

After her frantic insistence continued though, I began to realise that she wasn’t winding me up at all, and that she actually did think that this stick was in fact telling her that she might be pregnant. My immediate next thought though, was that she probably hadn’t done it right – I mean she never reads the bloody instructions properly for anything.

“Did you piss on the right end?” I asked, not even knowing how these things even worked myself really… “Maybe its past its use-by date!” I blurted out… “Maybe you’ve got a urine infection and its made it go all funny” I added – Such a romantic.

She babbled at me something about false positives, and that it was the only stick she had in stock in her small pharmacy, and was thrusting the stick into my hand, removing money from my jeans pocket, pulling her shoes on, and was out of the door promising to be back with more sticks before I really had chance to process it all.

Suddenly the door slammed, the whirlwind subsided, and I was left just stood there on my own in an empty flat – a coffee in one hand… a pissy stick in the other.

Bloody hell, I thought to myself – before heading to the bathroom to wash wee off my hands. The magical journey had begun.

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