Blueberry Muffin by WESLEY COOKE

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          Blueberry Muffin by WESLEY COOKE 


I got a pet dribbler.

My pet dribbler is a man mountain, with hands like bunches of bananas. Strangler’s hands.

My pet dribbler is called Dudley.

I call him my pet dribbler because that’s what he says to the others in there whenever I go and see him.

I met him one Wednesday when I popped round to see Mum. We always settle down to watch a film on a Wednesday – preferably a ‘shit kicker’ Western. Me and Mum were out in the back garden at the time having a cuppa when we heard this almighty racket – proper blood-curdling screams and aggy shouting. I had a quick Mr Chad peek over the wall and saw some big fella on the floor, curled up in a ball and on the receiving end of a right royal kicking from two sturdy-looking, middle-aged blokes. Now, I’m no have-a-go hero but the shrieking and howling coming from this poor fella was something else – almost childlike. It went right through you.  I climbed over the back wall and ran over there shouting for the two of them to pack it in – “he’s had enough!” The two of them spun round fast as you like, but their angry screwed-up faces soon smoothed out and went all wide-eyed when they saw who it was (in small and insular south-coast towns like ours nicknames quickly do the rounds – my nickname is Stabby Wayne; a nickname well-earned and well-upheld over the years), and so they both buggered off without any fuss. I could’ve laughed out loud when I looked down at him; the way he peered at me through those bunches of bananas covering his face. I peeled them off, helped the great big blubbering lump to his feet and took him round Mum’s to get him cleaned up.

The look on Mum’s face when we shuffled into the kitchen; I hadn’t seen her that angry with me in years. I didn’t laugh when she got back – still in a huff – and told me all about Dudley. I roared and I guffawed and I slapped my thigh like they do in old black and white films.

It turns out me and Dudley are the same age. It turns out my Mum and Dudley’s Mum know each other. It turns out that ever since the day Dudley’s stocky-little-barrel-with-a-big-beehive-hairdo for a Mother gave birth to him – at home – she’s kept him shut away indoors, under lock and key. Caged up like an exotic, twenty stone songbird. I didn’t find any of this stuff funny – but it also turns out that every now and again this exotic, twenty stone songbird somehow gets out of his cage and goes for a little fly about. The trouble was that Dudley liked to fly about with his flies undone and his pink and red courgette hanging out for the world and his wife to see.

Meet my pet dribbler, Dudley.


I forgot all about Dudley and his pink and red courgette until one Wednesday, about two years later when Mum mentioned that his stocky-little-barrel-with-a-big-beehive-hairdo for a mother had passed away.  Sheila her name was. It turns out that a few Fridays ago, on her way to buy blueberries (every week she’d bake Dudley a fresh batch of blueberry muffins, put a candle in each one and sing Happy Birthday to him) Sheila just dropped down dead. It turns out that Dudley has been put in a home, just outside of town. It turns out that my Mum and Dudley’s Mum know each other because they’re sisters.

It turns out that I bake a bloody good blueberry muffin.



***Wesley Cooke is a Mother’s first son. Wesley Cooke was born to test & experiment. Wesley Cooke lives in London. He tweets at:

PS: Don’t kill me for including your twitter, Wes.***


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