I have to pass this amazing news on immediately. I was downstairs ‘taking the air’ and this bicycle courier emerged from the building, the guy who often visits, the one who looks like he needs psychiatric help. Anyway, he had a cigarette in his mouth and I’m thinking “Anytime now he’s going to ask for fire.”. Shock of shocks, instead of asking he produces no fewer than two cheap plastic lighters from his pockets. Well, I’m assuming pockets but being a Lycra-clad cycle-boy this may be a false assumption. Perhaps he keeps them in his delivery pouch?
I’m paying little attention now but there’s this annoying sound of frantic clicking behind me. I turn to see cycle-boy holding the two lighters with their heads facing each other at 45 degrees while he’s desperately turning the spark wheel of one of them as if to light the other one. Having no success he moves behind a pillar out of the wind. Still no success but he’s resisting the temptation to make the inevitable request and before he can change his mind I’m inside and gone.
So there we have it. There are some people in Warsaw who own lighters, two lighters even, but none of them work properly. I have to assume this guy had one lighter that was full of fuel but had no spark and another lighter that had a spark but was empty. He was trying to put 2+2 together and make fire but it just wasn’t happening. It would be interesting to see statistics for the relative success of Slavic Neanderthals versus others, given that making fire was more important back then.
Of course the other possibility for his behaviour is that my judgment that he needs psychiatric help is correct.