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rabbit stew: the best of chris and torps

the year is 1997. the time 2.18pm. the call goes out for a journalist to review the up-and-coming pub and club scene in leeds.

two outstanding candidates emerge.

their names: chris "chris" williams, and mike torpey.

unable to select one above the other, the boss decides upon an unorthodox course of action, chris and torps are paired together for the first time.

like all unconventional couples, the pairing had its teething troubles. the loose-cannon chris upsetting the conventional play-by-the-rules torps.

by the time of their first mission, torps was nearing his retirement, only a bomb and a toilet could stop his plans.

of course nothing of the sort happened, as they are only journalists, not american "buddy" cops.

below, we have top-secret biographies of the pair known as "chris and torps". and right at the bottom is an archive of their most successful assignments.

full name: Christian Steven Williams
date of birth: 13/6/1974
sex: Yes, please

I was born by my mother when I was very young. I went to school, was very popular with the ladies, left and found a job as a sales consultant in a record shop. I left this position to pursue a career as a music reviewer, bringing my considerable knowledge of clubbing and drinking to the job.

full name: Michael Bygraves Torpey
date of birth: Never you mind
sex: What do you think? Male

Do I have to? I'd rather not. Okay, you may laugh, but, when I was born they thought I was a girl. This misconception carried on until I was 5 years old, and was only discovered when my "umbilical cord" slipped out of my shorts whilst I was doing a cartwheel. My name was quickly changed from Stephanie to Stephen, but as my brother Stephen is called Stephen, my name was changed to that of my mother, Michaela, well, I became Michael, for reasons I've already mentioned.

School was a happy time, the only down-side was being bullied by a certain well-known TV presenter, "do-do di-do-di, do-do di-do-di, do-do di-do-di, do-do di-do-di, di-do du-de, di-do-du-de, Poooo". I was, however, a very successful schoolchild and won many prizes whilst at school:
1945, 1st place "Bonniest Schoolgirl"
1946, 3rd place "Smartest Haircut"
1946, 2nd place "Most Badges Competition"
1947, 4th place "Spelling Contest"
1949, 1st place "Drawing Germans Comp."
1952, 1st place "Best Hider Contest"
1952, School Record "Hide and Seek"
1953, 4th place "Most Spots Competition"

After leaving school, I gained employment with the Batley Evening Express, and had, after 18 years of employment, risen to the position of Junior Reporter. In 1973 I joined the Yorkshire Post, and continued my exceptional progress. Within 10 years I gained the position of Assistant Trainee. Feeling, in 1996, that my phenomenal work was not being valued, I decided to become a freelance reporter. Quickly becoming destitute, I accepted the offer of a position with The Leeds Innscene, and the rest, as they say, is history.

I have been married 3 times, and have one son, Harrison, who has decided that his father isn't good enough, and has gone to live with the one who bled me dry and caused me to leave my beloved cottage "Windy Ridge" and move into my present residence in Armley.

I haven't been the best husband, but I like to think that I have........

[at this point the batteries ran out in my tape recorder] - Stephen Pryke.

first published in the leeds innscene

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all text + design © Stephen Pryke