The second worst thing I ever tasted was when I was walking up a grassy hill on a windy early Autumn day, just as all the craneflies were hatching. Orrible bleeders, yer craneflies; like flying spiders (shudder). Completely unnecessary fuckers. I was toiling up the hill, mouth open, breathing heavily, when the wind blew a cranefly straight into my gob. As the legs twitched and tickled inside my mouth I reflexively bit down, and the damn thing's long, fat abdomen burst, flooding my tongue with insect ubermank. I could still taste the grimness a fortnight later, despite buying up all the mouthwash in Southeast England.
So, what was the first worst thing I ever tasted, I hear you ask? (It must be you asking, cos all the Voices ever do is complain).
It was new year's eve, after the very much pub. I stopped for a Chinese take-it-away, but instead of ordering the usual chicken chow mein, I thought "I'll try shomeshing a bit dirrefent! What'sh (hic) the mosht exotictic thing on the nemu?"
After several attempts, I picked up both menus in both my right hands. They were printed upside-down, so I bent myself over until my head was upside-down too.
"Aha! Shtir-fried octopush wiv shpringing onions and root gingerer. That shounds pretty etoxic."
As soon as I got home, I tried a mouthful. It was truly vile, even worse than cranefly gunge. But for some reason (in fact, over a dozen reasons, of the sort that come in pint glasses) I ate the whole culinary abortion anyway.
In the morning, I woke up feeling like a toxic waste spill with eyeballs, but I managed to drag myself into work (no way am I losing my bank holiday bonus, dammit).
I was OK for the first three rounders, but just before the fourth and final rounder, while I was sitting at the bus stand, I felt a mega fart coming on. I lifted one butt cheek and let rip.
"Hmm," I thought, "surely farts shouldn't be sludgy?"
Yep, I'd shat myself. The octopus aftermath smelled even worse than it had tasted. Oh fuck, what do I do now? There's no way I'm gonna call control and say: "Control: Papa Bravo three zero. I need to return to garage cos I've shat meself." I'd never hear the last of it.
So I opened the cab window and put the passenger saloon blowers on full blast, to create a pressure differential, and set off on my last rounder. Amazingly, no-one noticed a thing! I guess the assault screen works both ways. Even more amazing was what happened on the return leg.
It's every bus driver's dream, under normal circumstances: a gorgeous, sexy girl came and stood by the cab and started blatantly chatting me up - and I was in no position to do anything about it! All I could think was:
"You wouldn't even be talking to me if you knew what I'm sitting in."