By Jesse Sharp-O’Hare
Chipped Crockery, Broken Dreams
I’d like to preface this SCAB with a quick dedication to Sasha’s mug, the real victim of this story. Rest In Pieces.
One slip of the mind. That’s all it took. Too eager to get to the pub on Friday afternoon, and I had sealed its fate. I looked around, checked I had put my computer in bag, threw my coat on and strolled straight past it. What is ‘it’ then? My mug. My mug that I had spent the best part of an entire day painting and perfecting, nurturing and cherishing into a seriously poor imitation of Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’ (complete with Brixton-themed surroundings). And with my exit its life was now in jeopardy. As we all know very well, mugs who stay out past the end of the day get smashed into a million pieces by a vengeful Marc.
So Monday came, and as Marc ummed and ahhed over whether to break mine and Sasha’s mugs in front of the assembled students and faculty, a challenge went up from Rob Binfield. Instead of the usual dance forfeits for lateness, a break dance to stop a break of mugs. You can’t argue with his logic there.
And so it began. My moves pretty much consisted of what is known amongst fellow b-boys as a ‘toprock’ – think just about to do a move, but never actually doing it. Repeat ad infinitum. Sasha in return busted out a sweet ‘assisted spin’, and then I ended with a ‘windmill’ into ‘lying on the floor’. The gauntlet was thrown down, mics were dropped, and we waited to see whether our gnarly skills had won us the safety of our mugs. The entire class waited with baited breath as Marc came to his decision. He nodded, commended us on our sweet moves and… handed back the captured mugs. Cheers went up, a bottle of champagne was popped and I left on the shoulders of my classmates as they chanted ‘Jesse! Jesse! Jesse!’.
Nah not really, he smashed them. He put them in a bin bag and he smashed them against the floor.
Sasha’s was the first to come out, a mess of multicoloured shards. I don’t think I’ve ever felt so sorry for a piece of crockery, or an owner of crockery for that matter. Next mine came out, and despite my worst fears it was lighter one handle, but otherwise intact. Someone, whether it was the breakdancing gods or Vincent Van Gogh, had taken pity on me. I haven’t left my mug out again.
But, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Apart from giving me a good lesson on cleaning my shit up, Marc has really brought the power of smashing mugs to my attention. And you may have overplayed your hand there Marc. For you too have a mug. I know you won’t leave it out any time soon. Maybe not next week, maybe not next month, maybe not the next six. But at some point. At some point a phone call will come just as you’re about to leave the school, or a sample sale on jazzy trousers will come to your attention, and you’ll forget. And when you do, Sasha and I will be waiting. Bin bag in hand.