Walking past The Valley,the home of Charlton Athletic Football Club with my pal Asif on a red hot day the thirst we felt was difficult to ignore. The corner shop was coming into view and As started counting his spare change. I had fuck all.
“57p” he claimed.
“For what?” I said.
“Thats enough,no crisps and no chocolate” he said.
“For what?!” again I came back with.
Dr Pepper had only just came out or so I thought,it was new and that name was so interesting to me,how the fuck could they make a drink out of pepper? Thats got to taste rank,but rank it was not. Years later I was informed that Dr Pepper had been around since the 1880’s or so. I had fuck all.
I waited outside like a tramp looking for coins to get some of this stuff as my man was already inside in the fridge and walking to the till. I found some 2p’s in the bubble gum machine outside,it was wretched,fucking horrible with a burnt plastic sight which looked into the crap inside. I had fuck all.
“Giss a drop?” I said.
“Fuck off” As said.
“It’s fucking baking,giss a drop?” I said,already feeling exhausted at the heat and desperation at this question.
“You stink” I said
“But i’ve got Dr Pepper and you ain’t” he said.
As he said that,he lent the can forward and spilt a bit on the pavement,right in front of me,right there.
“Fuck off then” I said,at the same time and knocked the can out of his hand and down to the floor. At that point my life changed inexplicably.
“WHAT THE FUCK IS ON YOUR FEET?” I said.
“Wallabees,Clarks….Wombats? I think? I know their Clarks though. You owe me a drink” he said.
“Where’s Clarks? What’s Clarks?” I said.
I had fuck all.
Three weeks after that I bought my first pair,well that isn’t strictly true. The fake one’s from Shelly’s in Deptford High Street,pink with flower round the ankle.
The greatest shoe ever made. The Clarks Wallabee.