Metro column 19

Richard Herring: It's OK to say 'get a room' when people start touching you
Metro's resident comedian Richard Herring tells of his lucky escape from a particularly yucky couple on a train platform who may or may not have been pitching for a ménage à trois.
Richard Herring Richard Herring: This woman might just have been a commuter, waiting for her train, like me, when she'd rested her weary legs and found her face being sucked off and her softer bodily parts explored

The young couple sitting next to me on the train platform the other evening were snogging so voraciously that I almost got sucked into the midst of their passion (and not in a good way).

This was a public space and though the light was crepuscular (I challenge you to use that word in conversation today but maybe look it up first – it doesn't mean what it sounds like it means), it was bright enough to illuminate them. You might expect this kind of behaviour in dark corners, late at night, when people are drunk but these two were only intoxicated by love and any right-thinking person has to find that offensive and disgusting.

As much as I hate the phrase 'get a room', I was tempted to use it, or at least ask them to move up the not particularly busy platform to a place where they could (practically) fornicate in slightly more private circumstances. I have seen dogs with more sexual shame.

I tried to pretend it wasn't happening but then the man's hand, which was scrabbling round his (presumed) girlfriend's bodily areas, began encroaching on my own person. He was so overcome with desire he had actually lost track of where his partner ended and the rest of the world began. He was just pawing at my arm for a moment but I felt sure that if I stayed where I was, he would press his luck and go for one of my more erotic areas (I have especially erogenous shins).

Was this an unsophisticated attempt to ask me to join in with them? Or perhaps the man had become bored by the woman (I have to say it didn't look like it, as much as I was trying not to look) and had decided to try and seduce me instead. I know some people like to have the next relationship lined up before they move on to the next one but this was a bit extreme.

Maybe he just latched on like an octopus-tentacled limpet to whoever was foolish enough to drift into his orbit. This woman might just have been a commuter, waiting for her train, like me, when she'd rested her weary legs and found her face being sucked off and her softer bodily parts explored.

She might have even guided his tentacle on to me so that she could make her escape. Who knows how many days she had been there, waiting for someone to be foolish enough to sit near to them, aware of this half man/half sea monster's insatiable lust for anything that was crafted in flesh?

Luckily, as the pawing of my arm intensified, the train pulled into the station. I got up and moved towards it but the amorous couple were too engrossed in each other's mouths to move. The idiots. There wasn't another train for 30 minutes.

I looked back to check I hadn't left anything on the seat and caught the man's eye. I could feel that my face had frozen into the mask of sour disapproval that is constantly on the faces of many middle-class, middle-aged women. I looked away, ashamed of my subconscious judgment (and possible jealousy).

I got on the train and it managed to pull away, despite the force of the sucking vortex which we had left behind on the platform.

Maybe I imagined it but we seemed to struggle to get going. However, once we were beyond the gravitational pull of the lovers' kiss we shot off like a rocket. I have a feeling the man was about to experience something similar.

Richard Herring's Talking Cock: The Second Coming will be debuting at the Edinburgh Fringe in August.

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