By Resident Relationship Councillor Harriet Crockof

Estranged couples, especially when there’s children involved, can be fraught with a multitude of difficult situations. When a break up between parents occurs, the child is often times torn between loyalties one way or the other. Father of three Gaz Propane is someone who has to deal with the continuous back and forth between his former partner Julie and his son Reefus, as they’re currently held in a long standing legal custody battle. However, a few Saturdays ago, Gaz was unwittingly awarded a prize when he had little Reefus in his care. I interviewed Gaz at his mate’s house, where he’s currently staying, to ask how he sees this award affecting his chances of getting custody of his child.

TDJJ: “So, Mr Propane, I know you’ve been through similar things like this before, but for the benefit of those who don’t follow you or your former partner on Facebook, can you explain what the award was for?”

GP: “Have you got that case of ales?”

TDJJ: “I’ve got a researcher at the supermarket now, Special Brew wasn’t it?”

GP: “Nice one. I wouldn’t have done this if I weren’t getting anything in return.”

TDJJ: “No problem, we’re here to help. So what was your award for?”

GP: “It was for the record of giving the most last warnings to a kid. I got a £10 voucher for ten pin bowling somewhere. It sounds like a weird award doesn’t it?”

TDJJ: “It is weird, yes, I guess the local council feel that youths have to be monitored closer now due to the rising crime rates. There’s cameras everywhere in Huddersfield isn’t there?”

GP: “Yeah, I reckon that’s how they knew how many last warnings I gave him. Anyway, she come in to McDonalds to hand him over. It’s my legal right to have him on Saturdays, see. The thing is, I had a massive hangover and to be honest not much sleep. It was my mate Fod’s birthday the previous night. What was I going to do? Anyway, I really couldn’t be arsed with anything, tired as fuck, but my solicitor says to me that it’d work in my favour if I made more of an effort this time. See, I got two other kids with other women. I can’t see them neither.”

TDJJ: “So they saw you giving little Reefus multiple warnings via their CCTV. What were the warnings for?”

GP: “I couldn’t remember until they told me when I got the award later that day. He was probably being too loud or something. As I say, I really couldn’t be bothered with anything, and loud noises – especially by kids – proper irritate me. But I wouldn’t ever hit him! Write that down.”

TDJJ: “Don’t worry, we don’t edit properly at The Daily JabJab. So after a while, a call was made to the council of this possible record of last warnings being given, and they tracked you once you left McDonalds.”

GP: “Yeah, again, my head was blurry, but we went up to the cinema, there was a film he wanted to watch, some cartoon crap about animals I think. Apparently I gave him several more last warnings on the short walk to the cinema, went in, and were ushered out a few minutes later. I forgot I was barred for soiling a few of their seats a few days before. Then we sat down on some chairs nearby and I fell asleep for a little bit. Twenty minutes.”

TDJJ: “Reefus wandered off, didn’t he?”

GP: “Well, I got woke up by some prick eating his sandwiches loudly at the other end of the bench. I then realised that Reefus had gone. I didn’t feel I had the strength to walk very far so just shouted his name in loads of different directions, giving him even more last warnings. When I watched the CCTV back of this bit, I didn’t realise how many people were watching me. I felt pretty good as they saw how caring I was, shouting his name in desperation. Luckily a few fit women at a salon a few roads away had taken him in. I tried giving them all a hug to say thanks, and said a few of my one-liners to charm them, but it wasn’t enough.”

TDJJ: “How long had the police been there?”

GP: “About 15 minutes. Listen, all this sounds a bit bad, and she got there with a face like thunder, moaning about having to leave work and all that. I had a brief scuffle with one of the cops outside. You can see on the footage I was doing all right for a bit. But they’re trained, and they used it against me.”

TDJJ: “But despite all this, you still feel the award you received shows you ultimately in a good light.”

GP: “Yeah, it was an eventful day. I just want to point out that it was my own record that I broke, which had been the record for a couple of years with one of my other kids, again in the town centre on a Saturday. Trouble is, my solicitor doesn’t see it as a good thing, saying that it could be seen as a sad indictment of irresponsible parenting. I can’t see how, if anything it shows that I’m improving. Winning again.”

I end the interview there as the researcher came back with the case of strong lager, and I quickly got the impression that Mr Propane wanted to be left alone to watch the TV. His court battles are set to continue.

Published by The Daily Jabjab

Hi, I'm from Stockport, Greater Manchester England. My plan on my blog is to hone my creative writing and write a post every day this year. It sounds daunting, and I'm sure things will evolve over time. Let me know what you think about my writing - any tips, useful websites and things like that would be quite lovely. Thanks for reading!

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