Phone call with the X-Factor

OPINION: Grant WoodhamsGeraldton Guardian

Remember the lines from the old Manfred Mann song?

“There she was just walkin’ down the street, singin’ do wah diddy, diddy dum, diddy do. Snappin’ her fingers and shufflin’ her feet, singin’ do wah diddy, diddy dum, diddy do. She looked good, she looked fine, and I nearly lost my mind…”

And lose my mind I almost did, not because the lady in question was attractive or had a great singing voice, but because her public and very loud conversation on a mobile phone would have been rated X even by the most liberal of censors.

I was inside my house, locked up against the winter chill, but I could easily hear her less than mild refrain about something to do with a stolen, lost or misplaced car and who was to blame.

Whether I should have investigated who was blaspheming and making accusations is a thing of the past, but there she was walking down the street and giving it her all. I went back inside.

Just when I thought the chorus line was over, she started up again. She must have decided it was an audition for Australia’s Got Talent, because here she came back down the street, hitting every note with emphasis.

As her voice faded away and the dogs stopped barking, I wondered who she might have been talking to.

Could it have been the police? I suspect not, and I doubt, though I am not sure, she would have been talking to her mother.

Now I think I heard most of her story a couple of times, but I was none the wiser as to what had really happened to the car.

Or, indeed, where this event might have happened — the chances are it wasn’t even in Geraldton.

If she had used a public telephone booth, she would have attracted a large number of people. The City would have needed crowd control.

I like a good mystery and I really like a good melody, something with a catchy turn of phrase, so I’ve been waiting for a few weeks now for my new favourite singer — though I think she would be better described as a screamer — to perform in public again.

Even if it is only on a mobile phone, she can really give it the X-Factor.

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