By Anthony Lowe
Where were you when the lights went out last Thursday afternoon? I was on an urgent mission to purchase stationery when a section of Oxford St was plunged into darkness.
Some people love buying stationery and can spend hours in places like Office Depot oohing and ahhing over flouro highlighters, staplers and suspension files. I am not one of them. The only suspension I am interested in is a boy in my playroom sling.
I had an important presentation to finish and I needed some presentation portfolios. I was fumbling around the back area of the store trying to find something suitable and had just spied it on a shelf halfway toward the ceiling.
I could have been in and out of the establishment quite quickly had it displayed price tags on items that were within arm’s reach.
I was climbing up the shelving in my full bike leathers when the lights went out. I hung where I was, assuming someone would flick the circuit breaker shortly. I was wrong and several minutes later I was still hainging on.
“What do you think you are doing?” screeched this dreadful high-pitched voice.
“Just getting some presentation portfolios,” was my reply.
“Get out of the store immediately! Can’t you see we have no power? Get down right now, you stupid little man, how can you possibly see what you want?”
It was like waving a red rag to a bull. I told her most of the customers had spent many hours preparing themselves for an occasion like this, by navigating around dimly lit areas of dancefloors and backrooms, and were brilliant at finding what they wanted in the dark.
The comment was met with cackles of laughter from other amused shoppers taking in the free entertainment.
“Excuse me, is your name Anthony?” came a deep man’s voice out of nowhere.
Before I could answer he grabbed me around the waist and lifted me to the floor. It was the handsome security guard I ran into at the airport the other week.
As we left the newsagency on Oxford St, he made a comment to the rude woman: “He may be small in height, but he’s big where it counts.”