Cocks and hens

May 26, 2010

When women get a fascination with something, it is of the all-encompassing sort. We men get fascinated by stuff, but it doesn’t take over our lives. Well, apart from pigeon-fanciers and trainspotters, but I left all that behind years ago…

Take the ex-wife and peacocks, for instance.

I proposed in Holland Park, August 1992. She’d dropped enough hints over the six months we were courting, waving her left hand around in the air so as to demonstrate the lack of a ring on a certain finger, to make me realise that I had probably take the plunge or risk never having sex. Well, not with her, anyway, she being a Catholic of the most devout sort.

It rather suited me, in a perverse sort of way. The anticipation of sex was a turn on in itself and anyway I am not a three times a day sort of man. Not even a once a day, if truth be told. Twice a week suits me fine (preferably in the evenings, none of that morning hanky panky for me) and so it wasn’t that difficult to hold out.

Secretly though, I figured that if she could hold out for so long, then she probably wouldn’t be too rampant and would be more likely to find comfort in home-making activities like baking and mending than rumpy pumpy. Call me old-fashioned, but despite the groovy lifestyle of an ad man, slippers work for me.

Anyway, as I was saying, I proposed in Holland Park. I’d bought a tasteful solitaire from Hatton Garden (small, nothing too flash) and produced it on the bridge in the Japanese garden.

‘Aren’t you going to get down on one knee?’ she hissed.

I wasn’t, but I did.

Looking back, she did seem a little disappointed with the ring, but perked up at the polite applause from the Japanese tourists. I wanted to ask them whether the Japanese garden was anything like the Japanese gardens in Japan – being quite interested in horticulture myself – but it didn’t seem an appropriate moment. Anyway, we had to go and see the peacocks.

We’d been visiting the peacocks for months, spending many hours waiting for the males to elongate their feathers in a display of courtship. More often than not, nothing happened. The pea hens, dull brown creatures, clearly didn’t turn them on.

I am told that a cock can mate with up to six hens in one session. I have very little, therefore, in common with peacocks.

‘Look how beautiful they are,’ she whispered as we waited for their tail feathers to fan. I nodded, as if in agreement, but really ached for a beer and wondered if I could get her to the Addison Arms before happy hour ended.

That evening, she told me she wanted a garden, and she wanted peacocks. I told her that peacocks were like corgis, and since I was not royalty, but merely an ad man, I couldn’t oblige.

‘Don’t you love me?’ she pouted.

While she waited for me to save enough to buy the house with the 24 acre garden to house the fowl (I never did) she collected peacock feathers. On our wedding day, she walked down the aisle in a dress adorned with 500 vibrant blue and green plumes.

The peacock feathers was just the start of it.

I should have realised then that she had a hoarding instinct and an obsessive streak.

The only thing I was right about, though, was that she wasn’t obsessed about sex. She didn’t take to mending or baking either, but she did let me wear my pyjamas all night.

Advertisements

2 Responses to “Cocks and hens”

  1. splitwindow Says:

    The peacock is a symbol of vanity in the Catholic Church.

    I am not lying.

    Yours,
    Agatha Whitt-Wellington (Miss)
    Everyone Needs an Algonquin


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: