West Magazine, September 3 2016

Page 46

My life

Chris Mcguire

Gullible? Me? This week, Chris McGuire has a close encounter of a feathered kind he black eyes looked at me, unblinksequel I felt sorry for the shark. I’ve never felt ing. There was something dead sorry for a seagull. about them or at least they revealed I’ve had two run-ins with this most malign of nothing of what their owner was creatures this week. The first encounter inthinking. I might have been staring volved a pasty. My pasty. I was minding my at lumps of coal. own business, on a bench eating a hot savoury, “Don’t you…” I began. when I suddenly found myself face to face But before “…dare!” could leave my lips, with a seagull. The bird squawked in the head jerked forward and a razor-like beak a sinister fashion and pecked in the snapped. The seagull triumphantly tilted its head direction of my face. With ninjain my direction, then, work done, it beat its wings like reflexes I lifted my hands to and took off – the purloined ice cream cone in its protect my features, making sure mouth. Leaving me with nothing but the increasI didn’t drop the pasty – I’m no ingly shrill cries of the toddler amateur when whose treat had been so cruelly it comes to eating stolen. Yes, this week I learned the things. But it With ninja-like that there are very few things on was the second reflexes I lifted this planet I dislike more than attack, from my my hands to seagulls. left, that got As a child, Jaws was one of me. I’d been protect my those films I hid behind the ambushed – features, making sofa to watch. I’d dare myself to Jurassic snatch glimpses of the scary (and P a r k sure I didn’t drop simultaneously ridiculous) monraptor the pasty. I’m no ster shark. Yet, as the increasingstyle. amateur ly leaden sequels piled up – like S t a rkaraoke versions of the original tled, I – one thing began to grate with me. Was the villain of the piece actually evil? dropped my precious Surely the shark just did what came naturally? pasty. They flew off Even if ‘what came naturally’ included eating with their spoils. As I unsuspecting swimmers. I concluded that no said, they’re evil. Pure animal, including sharks, is evil. They just occaand simple. sionally do antisocial things like eat people when As we know with they’re hungry. horror films, there’s I reached this conclusion long before I lived by always a sequel. Just the sea. Yet since my move west, I’ve discovered when I thought it was safe there is an exception to every rule: in this case to head back outside, I had it’s the seagull. Seagulls aren’t like other ania second encounter of the mals. They are malignant, plotting, conniving, bird kind. I was out with some nasty creatures. Seagulls are a thumping headfriends and their young daughache in bird form, serving no purpose other than ter when the aforementioned ice causing chaos – which they love. By the 2nd Jaws cream theft occurred. Truly despi-



cable. The shark would never have stooped so low as to steal a cornet. You’ll be glad to know I’ve come up with a plan to defeat the winged menace. My latest Dragon’s Den idea: The Seagull Pasty. I can’t claim it’ll be tasty, but I’d eat one every day if it means defeating this menace. Oh yes, the birds may have won the battles just lately but with the Seagull Pasty I’m sure to win the war. Chris McGuire is a writer who recently moved to the Westcountry. Never come between him and a pasty @McGuireski

NEXT WEEK: Phil Goodwin on love, life and parenthood in the South West 46

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