Art by Marc Hendrick
Art by Marc Hendrick

The Tournament of Masculinity: Len

Len sits in the TAB on Harris St, stares at the overs and unders.

His friend Belle’s in a tipping comp with the other girls from Stilettos. She’s at the top of the ladder and Len wants to help her win the thing.

He makes some notes with a pencil, pulls out his phone and writes a text: “Eels, Bunnies, Warriors, Raiders, Broncos and Manly – but fuck Manly ;).”

He gets back in his cab and drives up the road, picks up a young bloke going to Surry Hills. The young bloke asks how his day is and Len tells him.

Len explains that the prize money is a few hundred odd bucks and he knew that Belle could use it to do something nice for her young bloke who’s just learnt how to walk.

The young bloke says that Len was a good friend for helping Belle out. Len says that she was a great girl and admitted that — though he never asked — if the tips were good, she’d sometimes text message him a photo of her tits.

Len stops at lights on Goulburn St, and handed the young bloke his Nokia, asked if he’d like to see. The young bloke nods, takes the phone, looks at the screen and says that she seems very nice.

Len’s cab pulls up at the corner of Riley and Albion — and the young bloke hands back the phone, reaches for his wallet.

As the young bloke gets out of the cab, Len tells him that knowing Belle made his day, every day. He says that maybe — today — she’s made his day too. The young bloke nods, says he reckoned she had.

The car door shuts and Len puts his phone away. He indicates left and heads up Albion St, toward South Dowling and on to the airport.

* * *

jre

James Ross-Edwards is a regular contributor at New Albion.