The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post
Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy.
I heard her say those words.
Last Saturday, I sat in a Llanelli town centre cafe having a quiet cup of coffee (Well, the coffee itself was quiet, but I was making loud slurping noises, watching the world go by).
Not the entire world obviously, as that would take several months and not everyone in the world has the inclination, the air fare or enough holiday entitlement to parade past the window of my local town centre cafe, so I could stare at them as I drank my way through 5,000 cups of coffee.
Regular readers will know I spend a lot of time in cafes and it’s not because I have a ‘thing’ about shapely, thirty-something waitresses in pastel-coloured Rayon overalls that crackle as they place a plate of beans on toast in front of me and say in that provocative, ‘Continental’ fashion . . . ”Yer u are, luv!”
Years ago, I used to go out with a waitress, but I packed her in when I found out her toes were so tiny, you could barely see them.
Our relationship would never have worked because I’m lack-toes intolerant!
Sitting in cafes enables me to overhear people’s conversations.
Sometimes I have to strain my ears while I’m listening and until people get to know me, I do get the odd glance as I pour coffee into my lughole, swish it around and pour it back into my cup.
Some people are unaware that they’re talking so loud, their ‘private’ conversation can be heard by customers on the next table, passers-by in the street and holiday makers boating on Loch Ness.
For comedians needing ideas for routines, such conversations can be Manna from Heaven. Manna from Devon arrives quicker, but as it comes up from the West Country it costs £6.50 extra, to cover the Severn Bridge toll.
So, there I am, listening to the lady on the next table talking to her friend and I heard her say those words that many of you will hear over the coming months, but rarely in mid-August.
“I’ve done all my Christmas shopping!”
I wanted to ask her “Madam, if you’ve already done all your Christmas shopping, what on Earth do you do in November and December? Buy Easter Eggs and hot cross buns?”
But, before I could speak, a shapely, thirty-something waitress in a pastel-coloured Rayon overall crackled past me...and I became lost in an exotic mist of bacon fat and grilled tomatoes...
No man is an island:
I am thankful for the ever growing network of caring, loving and inspiring people that continue to support me and what I do, as these people, often unsung heroes, have contributed in some way to help me bring and share what I do to a much greater audience.
Many have taught me valuable lessons and I’m sure will continue to do so.
It has often been said that you are only as good as the people you surround yourself with, which includes those that we spend the most time with.
Once I read “that to move forward in life and to have peace and calm in all that we do and to grow and live life to the full we must help people and thereby attract the right people into our lives, which often means letting go and moving away from disruptive influences”.
My good friend, the late Rev Mostyn Williams from Clydach was a firm believer in this theory and I often think about the many conversations I had with this wise and humble soul.
The right people enrich the journey beyond words.
Yes, it’s all about the people; all the rest is just ‘stuff’.
Some people amaze me, but often for the wrong reasons.
There I was, minding my own business walking through Swansea last week, when out of nowhere I was almost knocked off my feet by a rather, shall we say ‘large lady’, in control (and I use that word loosely) of a mobility scooter.
What I’m sure didn’t help with her control issue was the fact that she was smoking a cigarette with one hand whilst trying to talk on her mobile phone with the other, in between trying to steer her transportation.
Adding to this was the fact that there were carrier bags full of shopping hanging off the handlebars and front basket, a Jack Russell wedged behind a Wilkinson’s bag... not to mention the oxygen cylinder that was firmly secured to the rear of her scooter, which I can only assume was to assist with her breathing difficulties, in between cigarettes.
Make what you may of this but believe me, at some point in the future this sketch will without a doubt form part of one of my future shows.
You can follow Phil Evans on Twitter @philevanswales and www.philevans.co.uk