‘The Nub of the Issue’ by Simon Parke

L’essentiel (nm) de la question : The nub of the issue 
Taken from: ‘Shelf Life’ by Simon Parke (www.amazon.co.uk)

Meanwhile Glyn is having a go at Faith. “This is not the time for lipstick,” he says.
“It’s not lipstick,” says Faith. “It’s lip salve. There’s a difference.”
“Not interested. You should have been in the bakery ten minutes ago.”
“And I will be.”
“What do you mean, ‘You will be’? You will be there ten minutes ago? Have you got a Tardis or something?”
“I don’t know why you’re getting in such a state,” she says, continuing with her lips.
“Because the place is a tip, and it’s a race against time!”
“Ooh! A race against time!” says Caspar, in camp fashion.
“It’s like in that garden programme on TV,” I say. “You know – they send the owners away on some false premise, and then have to change the lawn, add a pond, rip out the patio, and stick in a couple of garden gnomes before they get back.”
“Has this got anything to do with anything?” asks Glyn.
“Not really. It’s just the presenter keeps saying ‘it’s a race against time’ – because if it wasn’t, then really, who’d give a flying- ” 
“Look, this is not TV!” says Glyn. This is his first managerial post – and he’s seizing it with both desperate hands. “This is a real race.”
“It’s no race from where I stand,” says Faith. “The area manager means nothing to me.”
As ever, Faith has got to the nub of the issue. Sometimes it’s good when things mean nothing to us; when social convention or the expectations of others are not allowed to oppress us. As Socrates said: ‘There’s so much I have no need of” – which leads me to wonder whether he too didn’t work in a supermarket.
Taken from ‘Shelf Life’ by Simon Parke (www.simonparke.com). Available on amazon.co.uk (www.amazon.co.uk)            


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