Getting in the right frame of mind is vital to manage one's day particularly on business trips.
As I walked from the hotel to the office, I scrolled through the albums on my iPod and settled on the collective utterances of Eminem which had somehow ended up there. I clicked on this, feeling that this would assist my management style for the day -- aggressive, moody and foul mouthed.
I feigned a gangsta swagger, arranged both hands with fingers 3 and 4 squeezed down in that position which looks like a distorted version of the Star Trek Vulcan sign for "Live Long and Prosper" and considered introducing the words "MoFo" and "Bitch" into the introduction to the weekly meeting that I was chairing that morning. This lasted until I reached the door of the office on the realization that my aggressive/foul mouthed self tends to put a Lily into my Savage.
The day passed in a whirl with me leaving later that I should have done. The streets of town were deserted apart from teenagers on bikes, boards and probably birds, doing what comes naturally to them.
Walking up the roundabout which I needed to cross in order to get to my hotel, three teenagers suddenly appeared on bicycles one passing me on the pavement. The one flying by me on the pavement had floppy hair, sensible glasses and wore jumper and slacks that looked as if they were handed down from his father.
"Yo, Grandpa" - he shouted at me as he passed.
I was stunned. While I did not look my best, I was scarcely a dead ringer for Clive Dunn and the St Winfred's School Choir when they were in the Charts with "Grandad" in the 70s.
What would Eminem have done in that situation, I pondered quickly. I could have shot him. But where do you put your pistol in today's sensible rainware. The Barbour, which I was wearing has a handy pocket for dead animals at the back conveniently placed that you sit on them every time you sit down, thus covering your trousers with rabbit juice. But, pistol, wallet, Blackberry and keys - it's too much for the modern executive. There would have been expletives if Eminem had been called Grandpa. I considered the options - it was the usual family of "Mofo" derivatives. However, my assailants was only in the region of 13 years old, so "Mofo" was feasible but unlikely.
But, my Achilles Heel would have reared its ugly head again. I sound like Graham Norton when I swear. So, I shunned Eminem and embraced the Gandhi doctrine of non violence.
After going across the Zebra crossing, I turned right walking by the front of the window of the town's health club. It is a sight I enjoy every day as I pass the same spot - watching scores of young adults paying money to do the same sorts of things that they would have been required to do in the 1950s under National Service, the only difference now being that they were largely female and in tighter shorts.
As it was later than normal, the gym was largely empty save for a young woman swathed in lycra, her face puce from furiously pedalling on a cycling machine where her legs came out directly towards the window. It struck me that the angle of her limbs and position of her body were ideal for giving birth in. And the puceness of her face made me recall that of my wife as she pushed our children out as I twiddled my pom-poms as Cheerleader-in-Chief in various delivery suites. Then it struck me - what if we try to combine the two. Pumping it up and pushing it out. "Congratulations, Mrs Jones. You have given birth to a beautiful baby girl, and have lost 400 calories. Well done"
I kicked a discarded empty can of Tizer as I walked up to the hotel door.
"Think I'm gonna score some coke and go out with my bitches" - I told myself, but realised that if I ever said that in real life, it would sound as if I was going to the local shop to purchase a sugary drink during my job as a dog walker.