Look at this photo of some weapons. I'm a bit obsessed with it. I mean, let's go top-to-bottom here: you've got a crossbow, some Ninja Turtle swords; what appears to be the tip of some sort of sheathed samurai knife; an axe where someone has struggled to pick the Wickes label off; a grinder; two batons; some Rizla; a three-pack of Swan filter tips and a rounders bat. And, finally, for some inexplicable reason, a bit of a leg off a chair.
Who's looking at this weapons cache and going: "You know what? I'm not sure I can hurt enough people with all this. I need a bit of a leg off a chair or something." Reader, I intend to find out.
This was a haul of weapons found by a landlord in Bounds Green this week, and promptly reported to the police as part of a former tenant dispute. Now, I'm no landlord – I am capable of empathy, which rules me immediately out – but if a former tenant got in touch with me to say: "I have a dispute re: things I left in your house," and the things left were eight things that could kill you and a load of jazz cigarettes, I wouldn't exactly nark them to the police for blade disposal. I would say something along the lines of: "Sorry about the dispute, mate, and sidebar: I will not actually be charging you £500 to clean the flat up to my standards, have a wonderful life in your new home." But then that's just me.
There are, in my opinion, five possible people who could have left behind this weapons dump: that goth kid from your sixth form, Batman, actual Raphael off of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, your stepdad, or an extremely paranoid drug dealer. How is best to find out? Is it: call the Metropolitan Police and ask them? Unfortunately it is not. The best way to speculate as to what kind of person owned these weapons before the police disposed of them in a bin is for me to sit here, at my desk, and just, like, think about it a bit. With words.
THAT GOTH KID FROM YOUR SIXTH FORM
You all had that kid who was into weapons at your secondary school, right? Ours was a kid called Alex who got bang into weapons when his dad died. "How you doing, Alex?" we would say, cheerily, while he lay prone in his front garden wearing army fatigues and holding a £400 airsoft rifle. And then he would fire 100 pellets in a row into a cardboard target in front of a biscuit tin and say: "Fine".
Was he fine? Actually, Facebook exists; I can check up on him now...
Ah, his profile picture is a photo of a tank. His last update was just six photos of a sword. There is literally a photo of him holding a sword, in front of an illegal stream of Game of Thrones, with the caption "Oh hell yes." Can we just go through that, slower this time: the dude holds a sword while he watches Game of Thrones. He 100 percent has a cache of long-life food under his bed and a watertight when-the-zombie-apocalypse-comes plan to get to the nearest TA base and rule it like a king.
No: he is not fine.
But it is almost certainly not the goth kid from your sixth form. Because, though everyone had a kid in their sixth form who was bang into weapons – the kid who discovered paintball and then only talked about paintball and spent all the money his dad gave him when he saw him every second Sunday on paintball websites – the goth kid from your sixth form was not about getting high on weed drugs, which is what our Bounds Green weapons expert – with his grinder, with his torn Rizla packet – undoubtedly is.
The goth kid from your sixth form cannot toke on a sweet drugs joint because he is constantly, constantly paranoid that the RAF will come to school one day and do routine piss tests, and discover something in his piss. "Alex," the RAF will say, "the midi-chlorian in your piss is absolutely off the scales. This is the highest reading we have ever seen. Can you start training as a fighter jet pilot literally today?" And he will say yes – and so cannot muddy his body, because his body is a weapon more dangerous than even a chair leg. That goth kid from your sixth form did not leave a bag of weapons behind in a flatshare in Bounds Green.
It's not Batman. Here's why it's not Batman: you think Batman would rock up to a fight with the Joker with a Wickes axe that he'd failed to get the label off? You think Alfred would stand there and let him leave the house in this state? Alfred would be all, "Marster Wayne, I simply must insist that yew let me clean this £6 Wickes axe in a washing up bowl full of soapy water before you go out there and fight maniacs." Alfred all: "At least let me scrape at it a bit with a butter knife, just to get the label off." Alfred crying now, all: "Your father, Martser Wayne, I made a promise to him never to let you leave the house with a shitty axe."
Then Morgan Freeman turns up like, "Dude, you are a billionaire. Let me develop you a better axe than this, for fighting maniacs," and gets out a £100,000 pound axe made out of jet black carbon fibre.
Listen: I'm not saying these weapons don't suggest the person who owns them is not capable of wreaking extreme violence upon my soft schlubby body. I am not saying that. But nothing about these weapons screams "opulence". You think Batman turns up to a ruck with a special "Bat-chair leg"? He does not. Batman categorically did not leave these weapons behind in a flatshare in Bounds Green.
On VICE Sports: How To Spot A Match Fixer
Theory: all of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were stoners. Evidence:
- Bandanas, which is a thing stoners wear when they realise just wearing a tie-dye T-shirt isn't quite stonery enough, but their hair is still too short to put into the dreadlocks that would intimate that yeah bro, they know what "4/20" means;
- Extreme pizza obsession;
- Live in a sewer, which is only one rung below a typical stoner's front room, which is just empty Pepsi bottles and turned over ashtrays, and somewhere, buried underneath a tower of pizza boxes, a PS4;
- They sincerely say the word "cowabunga".
And so it is to be assumed that Raphael, the Ninja Turtle who uses two sai swords with which to vanquish his foes, possibly left his sai in a house in North London, along with some weed paraphernalia and an axe. Weirdly – beyond the slim possibility that the Ninja Turtles are not real – I can't actually see any real faults in this theory. There is a 50 percent possibility that Raphael off of the Ninja Turtles left all these weapons behind in a flatshare in Bounds Green.
Your mum's kicked your stepdad out again, and – after sleeping on your sofa for eight days while going, "Now, I'm not going to speak ill of your mother in front of you, but..." and then trailing off, fixated on another Dave Top Gear rerun, cigarette burns on the arm of your Ikea sofa, occasionally you wake up to the sound of him outside, stood in a vest in the frigid 3AM cold, kicking the Corolla so hard the car alarm goes off while patently yelling the word "SLAG!" – he's found a little place in Bounds Green. You take him to a nearby Tesco to do a big shop, and all he does is buys 12 tins of own-brand pork and beans and a massive sheath of Superking. "Oh, I forgot something," he says, and turns around and gets a Daily Star and another packet of Superking. He'll be OK.
On NOISEY: Watch Lionel Ritchie Get Curved By Adele
But did he leave the weapons behind? Evidence that he did: whenever you went on his old Dell laptop to check your email when you were visiting your mum, the only thing on his "Most Visited" page were a load of YouTube videos of women firing guns and some extremely amateurish judo throw compilation videos; your mum kicked him out for always smoking really loosely-rolled joints in the conservatory; that one time you went for a pint with him to try and bond he spent an hour-and-a-half talking about concealed weapon laws in the UK and a big arm tattoo he was planning.
Suggestions that he didn't: your stepdad owns about six things, discounting Superkings and beans. There's no way he would leave behind a £25 crossbow and a decent chair leg.
AN EXTREMELY PARANOID DRUG DEALER
That low-level drug dealer you have saved on your phone as the emoji that looks a bit like a weed leaf who keeps texting you at 3AM about "fat lemons" has just moved house and he's forgotten all his cool ninja shit and, fucking hell mate, he's gutted.
"Had some proper nice shit, man," he's saying, as you sit awkwardly in the front seat of his Audi while he sorts out his fivers. "Like: had a samurai sword, some sai, a fucking cool axe." He drops a filter tip between his feet and under the brake pedal and spends like two minutes trying to pick it up. "Do you watch any anime?" Oh god, he wants to talk about anime. You have to get out of here, you have to escape. Take your £40 worth of weed and run. You know this man is unarmed. But before that, he has the most drug dealer weapons collection ever known to man. Dude had a crossbow and a chair leg. He had an axe and some blunt ceremonial swords. He almost certainly left those weapons behind in a flat share in Bounds Green.
More stuff from VICE