How to be British · Language · mini stories

On the cadge

Saturday, July 1, 2017. Daily Brit Wit. 

On the cadge: 

Phrase, informal

Looking for an opportunity to obtain something without paying for it. 

“He’s clever enough to know not to draw attention to himself. When he was younger and would fancy himself in such a situation, he pictured creeping along stealthily and obviously, though nobody ever noticed. He admits he was as fanciful as the next child had been.

Yet years spent learning how to blend in with surroundings has allowed him to turn invisible. Not literally, of course. 

The jerks down the block tease and taunt that he can’t do it. Steal, cheat, lie. He doesn’t bother to reveal his hand, but he’s too quick agreeing. He certainly doesn’t have to prove his worth toward a bunch of bullies. 

Oh, how he wants to, though. 

He slips inside the corner store unnoticed, entering behind an elderly woman and a mother with two children. His chin doesn’t quiver to fall into his chest, but he doesn’t permit shoulders to broaden. He has made that mistake of drawing attention to himself for appearing too confident. 

His eyes scan the store. Of course, he could simply grab something small and easy–those power bars or sweets or oil. But the bullies would exclaim him mediocre. He continues his perusal. Ought he go flashy?

He settles on two bottles of rum. On the cadge, he swipes and tucks them inside his leather jacket.

And strolls right out. 

The mixture of horrified, impressed, and shocked expressions the jerks wear when he opens the jacket and reveals his treasures is worth his hasty agreement. They won’t bother him again. 

Once he’s certain he’s alone, he turns round and goes to return the rum.” 


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