Alistair Wilkinson Author
Alistair WilkinsonAuthor

friday night thread in january

not a fan of white wine but every Christmas I buy 2bottles just to have in and sip at between sherries while I get chef's nibbles at the turkey in the early afternoon of the big day. Most of the 2bottles, the green-bottled brothers, go to friends and mums dropping round for a


quick Christmas toast or a longer boozier evening. Cut to 2020's lone-drinking festivities and the younger brother, a half-bottle, sits in the fridge, lies on its side, fingers left on its hip, calling me like Blondie's song, beautiful and cool, untouchable brilliance, but


right there on the middle shelf


while its older brother sits behind the wheelie bin, ice cold, stuck in its frosted white basket from the leaking gutter above, the bin's wheels black against the gren glass. It lurks.

But it's
not just the taste; that's bearable. It runs straight upstairs, shaking the bannister every step of the way. A sniff of it and I'm as waffy as a duck who can't spell his name. A sip of it and I'm as floppy as a forgotten receipt. So
tonight, a friday night, ready for our tea, the end of a long horrible week, the first week after: bubble burst, balloons as wrinkly as Philip's driving license. the glamorous shine of the wine, winter's shadows cast from the light of the fridge, and the younger brother lying on
its side above the ingredients for a veggie stir fry. veggie tea and ice cold white wine. now that's class. onions, 'shrooms, peppers, white wine and grated carrot, all swirled into a supermarket sachet of sauce. if that's not class then I'm just a poor boy from Grimsby. and
those shadows would all live behind the wheelie bin, waiting and watching. 1 glass, 2 glasses.
when it's gone straight upstairs, banging the bannister every step of the way. when I'm dancing round a little kitchen, dodging a spilt pile of peanut butter, pogoing with Blondie and the beginning of the Stone Roses.
when I'm adored.
when my head's in the lights that hang
drunkenly from the egg-spattered ceiling. when I'm never more than 3 tracks from Meatloaf. when I ask do you love me forever? when I wait for a stir fry eating crackers and spread because I can never find the cheese my grandma had. when
these tears that I'll never admit to find their ways into the empty lines of my face easier each year.
with or without white wine.


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