Joseph Ridgwell

Men Without Women 

Jack and Dan were in their local boozer, The Flower Pot, known locally as – The Pot. They had been at the bar for a good two or three hours and were well on the way to being in a condition known colloquially as – Steaming.

‘Ow’s that internet dating lark going then?’ said Dan.

Both men were in their early forties and hadn’t had a relationship with the fairer sex for five or six years. In Jack’s case it was closer to ten. Nearly a decade without a woman had compelled Jack into drastic action. He had in fact joined the legions of lonely hearts. 

‘It’s pony mate.’

‘Why’s that?’

‘I’ve signed up to a few, but all they want is money.’

‘Rip off is it?’

‘Proper. And there’s the birds.’

‘Tasty?’

‘Far from it. Before ya sign up you get to see all these pics of what on the surface appear to be little sorts, but as soon as you’ve paid up reality kicks in.’

‘Mingers?’

‘Mingers, pyscho’s, fruit loops, and just ordinary basket cases.’

‘I did try to warn ya – same again Vick and a pack of pork scratchings.’ Dan looked to Jack. ‘Pack of pork scratchings?’

‘Na, get us a pack of salted peanuts.’

When the drinks and savoury snacks arrived Dan continued the convo. ‘All the sorts get snapped up in their twenties by the ambitious fuckers. The ones who have to have something pretty dangling from their arm every time they go out and who see everything in life as a commodity. Every now and then an older sort might come back onto the market – you know when her old man has got tired of fucking her and traded her in for a younger model. But mark my words – if they’ve kept their looks and figure – they won’t be on the market for long.’

‘What about a young bird?’

Dan wondered if his best mate was on a windup. ‘What young girl, in her right mind, is gonna take one look at the likes of us?’

‘What about a retarded one or something? You know, fit body, but not all there upstairs.’

‘Fuck me, you really are getting desperate.’

‘I was joking.’

Dan eyeballed Jack. ‘Could’ve fooled me. Na, the only bird that would consider us as potential husband material will be either pig ugly or on her last legs.’

‘So what you’re saying is that as far as any relationship with the fairer sex goes we’re both fucked?’

‘Basically, yeah. But don’t worry my son it’s not all doom and gloom.’

‘It ain’t?’

‘No it ain’t. Little Legs told me about it the other day in the Swan.’

‘Told you what?’

Dan leaned in a little closer and began whispering. ‘About grapefruit love.’

Jack did likewise. ‘What the fucks that?’

‘Fuck wasting time looking for a Doris, just get yourself a grapefruit every morning.’

‘What the fuck are you talking about?’

‘Feels just like a cunt.’

‘What does?”

‘A grapefruit.’

‘What?’

‘You cut a hole just big enough for your old boy to fit in and then bash one out.’

‘Serious?’

‘Ya can’t tell the difference. All you’ve gotta do is close your eyes.’

‘Close your eyes?’

‘And put a towel down as it can get a little messy.’

‘Fucking hell.’

That night as he made his way home Jack passed the 24hr Turkish grocers. As he did he caught sight of a tray of grapefruits. Dan’s words floated through his boozy frontal lobe. ‘Feels just like a cunt.’ 

And before he knew what was happening he had stepped inside and purchased five grapefruits.

‘No tins tonight then?’ asked Hassan the proprietor, somewhat amazed.

‘Na, I’m going on a health kick. The grapefruit diet comes highly recommended.’

‘If you say so geez.’

The next day Jack awoke bleary-headed as usual, like his head was full of cotton wool. He got up, took a horse piss, and then grabbed a can of Tizer from the fridge, downed the contents in one, and clocked them. On the kitchen table was a bag, the contents of which had spilled onto the floor. On the laminate were five grapefruits. Jack picked up one of the grapefruits and wondered. Then he got to work. Always horny after a session, he grabbed a knife and cut a hole into the fruit about the size of a fifty pence piece, all the way down. He took a towel from the bathroom, lay it onto the bed, and placed himself onto the towel. Then he took the fruit and forced it onto his erect cock. At first the hole wasn’t quite big enough so he went back to the kitchen and enlarged the hole with the knife until it fit perfectly – nice and tight. He went back to bed and lay down. He closed his eyes and conjured up an image in his minds eye of his line-manager – a sexy redhead in her mid to late forties. He moved the grapefruit up and down. Fucking hell Dan had been right. It did feel like a cunt. His hand moved slow – then fast – as images of a sexual nature played themselves out in his imagination. Pretty soon it was all over and he had come all over his managers saggy tits. 

Jack opened his eyes and looked towards his midriff. Grapefruit juice and bits of pulp covered his stomach and legs. And there was his cock, still erect, a spunk-splattered grapefruit stuck to it, harpoon style. Jack looked at the yellow ball and for the first time in his life contemplated suicide. Then he got up, chucked the messy fruit into the bin, and took a shower. 

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