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Lost the Plot - Episode 1


By Monkey1 & Crouch n'Hold
July 12 2006

The boredom of the summer was beginning to tell on the regulars of the Falcons unoffy message board. Tempers were becoming frayed, even the slightest comment could start a war of words that could last for minutes. The situation was not good, something had to be done.

It was the brainchild of John Lincoln. A trip to Paris to visit all the places where we had so much fun when our last foray into the world of Heineken Cup rugby reached a dismal ending. A chance to unite under the big metal thingy & get blind drunk.

 

 

 

The years of alcohol abuse were taking their toll so John named this the Slashing with Lincoln trip owing to his now knackered bladder.

 

The idea was posted on the message board & was greeted with great enthusiasm. Touchy had scooped a win at the bingo & no longer sat in a state of hopeless despair on his front step in Pegswood, now he could afford to play real golf & usually sat in a state of hopeless despair somewhere in the rough to the left of the 1st fairway.

 

Now connected to his own brand new but surprisingly good value computer instead of the free one for the unemployed at his local community centre, he offered to arrange the trip. Still being of a criminally tight fisted nature he managed to sort a real bargain. This was possibly the beginning of the troubles, an offer that is too good to be true is often, well, too good to be true.

 

The trip seemed so affordable that plenty were able to join the party that assembled at Newcastle Airport one Friday. It was so ridiculously cheap that even some of the players & Rob could afford it. This was going to be a trip to remember.

 

And that certainly turned out to be true.

 

The first warning signs were there for all to see at the airport. The plane was not a charter flight but nobody else would be flying on it that day. Anybody with any sense would not board such a plane, a type of plane that was last seen at Newcastle airport in 1952. Members of the public who had booked seats for this trip took one look at the rusting & metal fatigued relic that dripped oil onto the tarmac then fled, very few of them would ever dare fly again.

 

 

The last call was made for passengers to go to gate 4 for flight MTL815, departing at 16.23 which was 42 minutes late. The passengers didn’t mind the delay as it gave more drinking time in the bar, except for Touchy who refused to pay such high prices for a pint & was onto his 5th hip flask.

 

Flight MTL815 to Paris was for the drunkenly bewildered only, the perfect carriage for Falcons players & supporters alike. The pilot greeted them personally as they reached the top of the wooden ladder, belching whisky fumes as he did so that stripped the last of the paint from the rusting hulk. All were guided to their seats by Betty the stewardess. She was certainly good at her job, with nearly 50 years of experience behind her she expertly smoked her Woodbine without dropping any ash, the same Woodbine that would still be jutting from her gnarled lips when she trundled round with the tea urn later.

 

Rob arranged for all the players, himself, Blackie & Anna Humphries to be seated at the back. The Slashing with Lincoln posse took their seats at the front. The pilot made one last visual check of the plane, after some deliberation he worked out which end was the front & staggered into the cockpit.

 

 

With a mighty roar the starter motor on one of the engines exploded. The mechanic who kept this piece of aeronautical history almost airworthy rushed from where he was sitting smoking a fag on the tarmac & expertly kicked the propeller. The engine coughed & wheezed then with a cloud of black smoke sputtered into life.

 

The other engine purred into life like a Rolls Royce and the mechanic smiled lovingly at the sound. The engine had indeed once been a Rolls Royce but very few original parts remained, now it was a collection of special offer bits from Kwik Fit & Halfords but at least it worked.

 

Most of the time anyway.

 

Betty stood at the front & performed the pre-flight ritual of demonstrating the seat belts & life jackets, the Woodbine still going with an inch of ash drooping from the end. As usual nobody paid any attention, she couldn’t be heard above the engines & the Slashing with Lincoln posse singing the Micky Ward song anyway.

 

The takeoff was completely without incident & amazingly the old rust bucket climbed into the air. Soon they were above the clouds at cruising speed, the few seat belt lights that worked were extinguished & Betty rattled along the plane with her tea trolley. Nobody wanted tea so she spent her time collecting the mounting number of empty cans, the Woodbine now smoked down to the tip but the ash still intact.

 

The time passed, much longer than you would expect for a flight to Paris, but everyone assumed that the old heap was lucky to stay in the air never mind make any forward progress. Nobody really cared, the singing was in full swing, Leipy & Micky now belting out an authentic rendition of the Blaydon Races that nobody else could understand.

 

Suddenly Rob began to scream & panic & pointed out of the filthy window. He had seen a black speck in the distance & was shouting hysterically about a near miss & destiny. The black speck was actually a piece of fly shit on the inside of the window but he mistook it for another plane which he thought to be dangerously close.

 

Everybody crowded over to the left hand side of the plane to see what was the cause of this outburst. The shifting weight of bulky rugby players & beer fattened supporters was too much for the knackered old plane & it tilted alarmingly to the left. The pickled pilot struggled to retain control, overcompensated & the plane began to spin out of control. This was too much for the structure to take. This was in fact 2 planes, a cut & shut job that the pilot bought cheap from a bloke called Daley in a back street garage in London. The shoddy repair that held the plane together gave way & the entire back section drifted away from the front.

 

The pilot realising that they were doomed rushed out of the cockpit, gathered Betty on his way, still with her Woodbine & the pair of them disappeared with the only parachute out of the gaping hole where the back of the plane used to be. Down into the clouds went the tail section, the front of the plane, and Betty & Pilot entwined in each others arms. All that remained above the clouds to show that flight MTL815 had ever been there was the ash from Betty’s woodbine drifting in the wind.

 

Everybody screamed as the front section of the plane plummeted through the clouds. The wind howling in from the back blew the empty beer cans around, the shocked Slashing with Lincoln posse holding onto their remaining drinks for dear life. They emerged from the clouds to see a tropical beach below. The remains of the plane spun more & more slowly like a Sycamore seed falling gently to Earth. Eventually the plane hit the water & skidded along close to the shore like a ride at Alton Towers until it came to a stop & started to sink. Everybody rushed to the back to swim for their lives.

 

 

The survivors swam to the shore & started to assemble on the beautiful deserted tropical beach. First to crawl onto the sand was Dr.B, soon followed by RucknRoll & FF No.1. Slowly they gathered & began to check who was missing. Peter & Monkey1 were together with Bubble & Squeak, Crouch n’ Hold, Mally & Pod. Geordie Fatboy & Touchy were already sharing a hip flask of whisky, soon joined by Happy Hooker, Charlie Says with Little Em, Westand, Tracy Wilko, Ma Leipy & Leipy who had somehow managed to hold onto his bottle of Dog throughout the drama without wasting a drop. Mark H emerged from the water looking strangely out of place in his Saints shirt with Sheeny close by.

 

Everybody looked round, there were 2 people missing, no sign of them on the beach or in the water. As the body of the plane disappeared below the water, only the flotsam revealing where it had come to rest, it appeared that DGNTR & John Lincoln had bought it when their kite went into the drink. The party on the beach fell silent, mourning for these 2 colourful characters.

 

Suddenly a life raft bobbed to the surface, 2 figures could be seen paddling towards the shore. Amazingly it seemed as if everyone had survived, as the inflatable craft drew closer the cheery faces of the 2 missing supporters could be seen grinning wildly. Several people waded into the sea to help them pull the life raft onto the beach and it was surprisingly heavy.

 

“We thought we’d lost you” said Dr. B to the exhausted but happy pair.

 

“We thought we’d better get all the supplies we could from the plane before it sank” answered DG, “looks like we will need them.”

 

Everyone helped to unload the life raft & stack the provisions on the beach. They had collected every single can of beer, bottle of spirits, even the miniatures from Betty’s trolley. Not a drop had been left to perish with the wreckage. Apart from a packet of crisps that had floated into the raft by accident there was nothing else.

 

“Better gather in all the floating luggage we can” said Happy Hooker, wading in to drag a suitcase onto the beach. Soon every bit of luggage was collected in the shade of the tropical jungle at the top of the beach & they started opening the cases to see what useful things they could find.

 

“This must be yours.” Said Monkey1 to CnH as he opened a case full of Blackthorn.

 

“Then this will be yours.” She replied opening a case full of Guinness.

 

“Found yours Tracy” shouted Pod as she stacked the Watney’s Red Barrel.

 

“Ah Fanks Luv” shouted Tracy “Ah fink Leipy’s gettin yours aht the wortah nah.”

 

Leipy was struggling with a huge case packed with Woodpecker.

 

“Jeez man worra lis lot packin wu doon like.” Grunted Leipy as he heaved the massive pile of cider cans up the beach. “Any yous sin ma derg?” he asked but as nobody understood a word the question drifted away out to sea unanswered.

 

The sounds of cans being stacked were joined by the merry clink of bottles as GFB’s whisky & Touchy’s wine was neatly stacked on the sand.

 

The unpacking continued for nearly half an hour until there was a collection of Booze that would keep Threshers in business for a week stacked along the shore. Apart from a few articles of clothing there was very little else, except of course for Bubble & Squeak’s cases which yielded enough clothes & make up to keep the 2 girls in fashionable style for weeks. Little Em’s case was full of tiny tiny clothes & an assortment of coloured plastic things that were a mystery to anyone except Little Em.

 

RucknRoll opened a case to find what appeared to be a very large folded sheet of white plastic, it certainly didn’t contain booze so it was put to one side as rather uninteresting.

 

Cans & bottles were opened as the group started to look around at their surroundings.

 

“Where the hell is this place?” asked Westand.

 

“Who bloody cares” replied The Lincoln “Pass me another beer.”

 

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