Catching a tram home from work is exciting and often an adventure, but I have decided to walk to or from work a few times a week for the fresh air and exercise.
Usually this is pretty straightforward and uneventful, particularly when i do it early in the week, but a couple of days ago I was walking home and overheard a funny exchange as I passed a local restaurant.
The main protagonist was a man known around Fitzroy for his leather cowboy outfit. He's a remnant from the punk era, but I imagine he was unique back then too. He can be seen holding a sign and drumming up business for the Rose street market on weekends. He also has a sign that reads "will recite poetry for beer".
Some people cross the road to talk to him whilst others cross the road to avoid him. Two young men, probably not from Melbourne, were reading the menu in the window of a local Thai restaurant. They were quietly conferring with one another, probably about whether or not to go in and eat.
The leather clad cowboy approached them smiling. I could tell he was up to something. He stopped and said, "You know it's not a restaurant, right?"
The men looked around, obviously confused.
"It's just a front for a brothel."
The men smiled, and said "That's what we were after."
"Well boys, ring the bell! Ring the bell!" he said, his voice rising and his arms raised like a preacher.
I'm not sure what happened next, as I had seen enough to keep me amused, and I continued my journey home.
Incidentally, the restaurant is not a brothel, in fact the real brothel is over a block from the restraint in this story. The cowboy would know this very well, having lived in the area for over 20 years.