I don’t know if I was bored, or if I was trying to keep my mind off things. But I started to debate surprising Fife with a little futuristic sexy time.
I put the silver bikini-wrap-thing on under a hoodie. (It doesn’t have bottoms except for a sarong, just for your information. I would never wear used bikini bottoms. I’m not nasty.) I texted Fife and asked him to get on Skype once the kids were in bed. Within an hour, I heard Skype binging. I was going to answer the call in the silver bikini, but I couldn’t bring myself to take the hoodie off. I was so embarrassed. As much as I try, I can’t get into this whole fancy dress/role playing thing.
We chatted for a bit, and he asked about tomorrow. (Tomorrow’s LadyBohemia’s funeral.) I wanted to change the subject, so I asked about Helen transferring back to Scotland fulltime. He didn’t want to talk about it. The conversation started to die, and we were both properly bummed. There was only one thing to do…sexy Jetsons.
I asked Fife to stay online for a moment. I went into the other room, pulled my hair into a high ponytail, and swiped a streak of blue and purple eyeshadow across my eyelids – really 80s like. Wasn’t the 80’s all about being ‘futuristic?’ I don’t know, maybe they weren’t. But he wanted his childhood fantasies fulfilled, so going 80s seemed like a good idea.
I stripped off the hoodie and went back to Fife on Skype.
Well, I must not have been the picture of 2001 Space Odyssey he’d dreampt of, because he said, ‘Why are you wearing kitchen foil?’
Trying to keep up the fantasy, I said, ‘Because in the future we have to wear gear to protect us from gamma rays while talking on the television phone.’
‘I don’t think you have enough material on you to protect from gamma rays.’
This was exhausting, and I got a bit pissy, ‘Fine. I’ve got an invisible shield for gamma ray protection. This is my space hooker outfit. Would you prefer that? At least I’m trying.’
He started to laugh, which caused me to laugh. Man, he and I suck at role playing. I don’t know why he keeps suggesting it. I don’t know why I play along.
I told him to be serious, ‘We’re very serious here in the year 2525…’
‘If man is still alive. If woman can survive,’ Fife said.
I had no idea what he was talking about, so Fife explained it was an old song from the 60s.
‘I thought you were born in the 70s?’ I asked. Oh my god. He’s even older than I thought.
‘Don’t be daft. I was born in the 770s,’ he said. ‘It’s just a song I’m familiar with. I wasn’t born when it came out.’
Man, we really weren’t getting into this. I asked if I could put my hoddie back on, and he said ‘yes’. He talked some more, about his childhood and what he thought the future would be like – flying cars, jet packs, nuclear fallout. He said growing up he was terrified of nuclear war.
It’s weird, because despite our age difference, our childhoods aren’t that unsimilar – we both were raised with fear of complete annihilation. Where Fife was afraid of the Soviets and the Americans nuking each other, and growing up I was afraid of terrorist attacks.
I was still young during the Tower Attacks, and before that it was a fear of IRA briefcases in the bins. I wasn’t alive during the 80s ‘troubles’, but my mum always warned me, ‘If someone leaves a bag alone in a shopping centre. Run.’ For a while, when I was really little, I was terrified of going anywhere near a public rubbish bin.
I like that Fife and I have something in common about our pasts. I guess the generations aren’t really that different.