Thursday, 3 January 2013

My Life in Stalkers 2 - The one that was All My Fault (Part 1)

I'm not proud of this one, because I took a pretty normal bloke and sent him psycho, and it is fair to say I never saw it coming. I've felt bad about this for years, it is why I became so determined to never cheat on anyone ever again, because what happened was so bad - tho being my life, it did have a comedy ending!

The person this blog is about is actually now a friend, and out of respect for him, I am changing his initial and his friends' initials etc., so hopefully unless you know the story already, he's pretty unrecognisable. Dr House Officer is another kettle of fish altogether, and I don't care if he has invented a wonder-light, he acted pretty badly and I don't care if people work out who he is!

So - it is the early 90s and I am Senior 1 Burns physio at Birmingham Accident Hospital. This was pretty much my complete and utter dream job at the time, I loved the hospital, I loved my consultants, I loved learning and teaching, I loved the drama and the excitement and the ridiculously hard work, and even more ridiculously hard play.

At the same time, I had this whole other parallel life, living with my boyfriend, M_, in Moseley, and doing all the usual gothy stuff with our friends. He wasn't anything to do with hospitals, was very arty, and played in a band in his spare time - a band that very nearly sort of made it :-)

There I was, all happy, and then one August Dr House Officer turns up. You get new HOs every August and February - but August they are brand new out of uni. By this time (I was 27), I wasn't particularly interested in the new HOs - they seemed very young, very vulnerable, and they were all just that teensy bit incompetent and a nuisance at first. Yet I noticed Dr House Officer the very first time I saw him. He was sitting on his own in the canteen, and he ate like my Dad. I can't explain how, but my Dad does (did) this thing with his mouth when he eats, and so did Dr House Officer. He also had these gorgeous brown eyes, like a baby seal, and he looked so young and vulnerable - but that was all - a quick, 'oh, he eats like my Dad, I've never seen anyone else do that before' - and I forgot all about him.

All the other physios were involved in The Points Game - you get points for snogging different grades of doctors, and the game resets each rotation, so the new game was on. I was settled, so I wasn't even in the running, but it was still fun to listen into the plans and plotting. Most of the gossip was about the upcoming barge party, the first big event of the new rotation.

We all went, and M_ wasn't going, because he wasn't really into things that went on at the hospital at all - he was pretty shy anyway, and especially with people who weren't goth. I never really was your 'dressed in black' goth - I had orange hair and loved wearing very colourful clothes. That evening as I climbed down the ladder thingy into the barge, I was wearing leopard-print yellow skinny trousers, a purple shirt and a multicoloured glittery waistcoat with jingle bells on it. 'Oh my God, it's Marc Bolan' said Dr House Officer. I smiled, but essentially blanked him, and went off with my friends to drink some horrible green drink, that surely had more than a little bearing on what was to follow.

What was to follow was Dr House Officer chatting to me a couple of times, and inadvertantly letting slip that he liked Nick Drake. All of a sudden, I was interested - no - MORE than interested, because Nick Drake was my current Big Thing that I had recently discovered and was banging on about to anyone who would listen (and more than a few who wouldn't). So we had a very animated conversation, but then off I went with my mates again.

Until the Casualty Dog got involved. So named because she worked in Casualty, and she was a Dog. Yes, it's not very sisterly, it's not very adult, but trust me, in this case it was deserved. All my mates were going on at me, 'Karen, you can't leave him to the Casualty Dog, you've got to rescue him - I mean, he WON'T KNOW that she's the Casualty Dog, he might think she's normal. He'll catch something, you HAVE to act.' And of course, I was all tipsy on Green Drink, so it seemed like yes, this was a reasonable thing to do.  So I came out with one of the lines that has gone down in Accident Hospital history - a story that would doubtless still be being told today, had it not been shut.

I wandered up to Dr House Officer and Casualty Dog, smiling sweetly and saying, 'excuse me'. I turned to Dr House Officer and said, 'only, I just wanted to let you know, I'm going to snog you later.' Then I turned slightly, before turning back. 'In fact, I'm going to snog you now.' And I did. Not just a baby snog either. This was a proper, no-coming-up-for-air, face-off, tonsil-tickling full-on snog. Which he enthusiastically participated in. When we finished, I sort of held him at arms length, smiled, and walked to the other end of the boat - luckily he followed me. We were pretty much alone (apart from the sounds of cheering and whistles) at that end, and I said, 'you can thank me later, I just saved you from the Casualty Dog.' But somehow, we carried on chatting for the rest of the night.

And by the end of that night I had fallen for him, massively hard. He knew I lived with someone, but he wanted to see me again, and I wanted to see him again too. It was a question of logistics though - but he said we'd work something out at work.

I hardly slept that night at all. M_ obvs asked me how my night had been, I said it was just the usual; too much alcohol and not enough common sense. Didn't mention that was just me.

Next day I was just buzzing, couldn't WAIT to see Dr House Officer. but there I was, trapped in the Burns Unit and desperate to know what he thought of me in the cold light of day. Then, at break, my Best Mate, S_ said, 'oh, I can't put my finger on it, but I'm pretty sure Dr House Officer really regrets last night.' I was gutted. Then my Future Best Mate, C_, said, 'I can't see that, he was well into her even before the snog, why would he suddenly change his mind - he wasn't drunk at the start of the night.'

So I was well confused, but also quite proud, because, whatever, for one day at least I was winning the Points Game!

After lunch, my bleep went, and when I answered it, it was DR HOUSE OFFICER wanting to talk to me. thus began a whole string of sneaky meetings over the next couple of days. I'd been supposed to bleep him, but I hadn't, cos of what S_ had said, but he told me it wasn't true, and he definitely didn't regret it at all. Over those couple of days we reorganised my on-calls to coincide with when his team were on take, and arranged a night out, and a completely fabulous weekend at Handsworth Carnival (when M_ was away with his mate).

It was weird - I still loved M_ as a friend, but the spark had gone ages previously. Yet I would come back from being on call and want to tell him about how great Dr House Officer was. And I knew how awful I was being. There was one Saturday when I really wanted to be with Dr House Officer, but we were cat-sitting for M_'s friend, and watching Wild At Heart (the film, not the crap TV show). Chris Isaak was singing about how he didn't want to fall in love, celluloid houses were burning down, and I knew exactly how it felt. I knew my life was going to be shattered at some point, but like a car-crash it was happening in slow motion, and I couldn't do anything to stop it.

The Karma train was coming - and it was about to pull into my station....

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