“ The Assistant ”
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After I stumbled into the local Boots and bought a pack of waxing strips (getting a slightly befuddled look from the lady behind the till), all of us vacated the office to participate in waxing Neil's legs. There were plenty of strips and hair to go around, and we all had a go - some two, even three times; a few suggested we target the chest or the armpits, but this was shot down by the victim pretty quickly. When all the waxing strips were used up, Neil nominated Morgan to give his legs a wipe down. I asked some of the participants how they found the experience.
Chris: "Bizarrely satisfying removing so much hair. I did one early on and he was screaming. But later on, he was yelping, which wasn't as much fun."
Morgan: "Disturbing, given that he seemed to enjoy it. The wiping down was sick and wrong - he was groaning."
Tom Mansell: "...like stripping Velcro off bacon."
Cat: "It felt disgusting. I felt dirty all over. I had to wash my hands afterwards, because I felt so gross."
The Drag Queen
Then, yesterday, Neil dressed as a drag queen. I'm not allowed to spoil anything (you'll have to wait for the video), but I did prod the office to give a rating out of ten on how attractive they found Neil's drag character.
Paul: "3 - It's one thing to say he'll be a drag queen; it's another to see it. He's like Captain Caveman in a frock."
Mayer: "4 - A healthy four, mainly for the pretty wig and wisp of visible back hair."
Simon: "3.45 - She's a 14-pinter. A valiant effort, but way, way, way, way too much hair."
Tom Mansell: "1 - The less said the better."
Jason: "-5 - He looked like someone from Little Britain."
Adam: "5 - If I was married and had a 'list', Neil Down would be -1,000. And then another -1,000. And then another."
Morgan: "3 - He loses points for all the chest hair and wearing a low-cut top. More clothes would've been better."
Alex: "0 - Thoroughly disgusting, disturbing, vomit-inducing, eye-bleeding, and gut-wrenchingly awful - the worst moment of my career."
Cat: "3 - It was an 8, but Neil was so mean to me. Being trapped in a disabled toilet putting eye-shadow on my boss was the most traumatic half-hour of my life."
James: "2 - No heels, and the hairy chest was offensive beyond measure."
Lewis: "7 - He could've gotten an even higher score if he performed 'Sweet Transvestite' from The Rocky Horror Show - maybe a 9 or a borderline 10!"
Rob: "8 - Purely because I saw a less good-looking woman in the building wearing the same skirt that day."
Chris: "1.345 - Made me question all forms of human sexuality. Am now celibate."
Neil: "10 - A shame that some weren't aroused enough. I'll try better next time."
Voiding Jason's rating (Neil might have had a hand in that), I make that an average of 3.91, which is far from a bad score. I also had time for a quick exclusive chat with the man of the moment about his bucket list.
What was worse: eating that chilli or being waxed?
"The interesting thing is that eating the chilli actually got worse over time. The pain hit me in successively more intense waves. On the other hand, getting waxed became a bit of a kinky thrill towards the end."
Was there anyone particularly rough or whose touch you appreciated more during the waxing?
"Getting rubbed down with a soothing wipe by Morgan was a particular highlight. The bit you didn't see was a private 'finishing off' session in the disabled toilet with a member of staff who shall remain nameless."
How committed were you in embodying the persona of Neil Down? Did you sit when using the toilet?
"Neil Down flirted with the boys and insulted Catriona, which is everything you could hope for really. Using the toilet was interesting - how do real women stop their dresses from getting wet?"
That leaves just one item left on the list. You'll have to wait to find out what that is, but it's probably the least humiliating of the lot, which will make a nice change for him.
On an unrelated note, we also have two new additions to the office, music reporter Lewis and chief sub-editor Adam. A die-hard Manchester United fan, Adam's been part of the team for a number of years now, but has only recently joined us in London. Lewis is our latest recruit. Before he landed this job, he did a little work as a body double in X-Men: First Class and as an extra in Sherlock Holmes 2, which is a really cool factoid. Anyway, to close this post and as an added bonus, enjoy this photo gallery of Morgan and Chris enjoying the Doctor Who Experience on Sunday. Morgan said it was great and gave a shout-out to the TARDIS-shaped cakes.
Copyright: Digital Spy