Thursday 15 May 2008

Teetering on the fatal slope

Mercifully I have no idea what last night’s three loaves of bread etc have done to my weight; I reckon I got through 13.0 units of alcohol, without allowing for the fact that I was almost certainly knocking back the red wine in the pub faster than anyone else; 1.359; Salvation Army Men’s Palace (pending).

I woke around 6 this morning and did my best to go back to sleep, but succeeded only in giving myself a weird dream in which I was greatly upset by losing my souvenir-packed suitcase at the end of a world tour on a giant trolleybus. Told you it was weird.

Not wishing to be a nuisance, I got on with quietly reading yesterday’s newspapers until I could detect definite signs of life in the house. They must all have been creeping around like church mice, but there was definitely a reaction when a bunch of eager tree surgeons rang the doorbell a bit before 8, so I decided that it would be an appropriate moment to leave. I felt bloody awful even before I was assaulted by an enthusiastic young cocker spaniel in the kitchen, but at least I was able to console myself for half an hour by reflecting that I was not Gordon Brown. Even John Humphrys must feel a bit sorry for him, judging by the comparatively mild grilling he received over his attempted re-launch. Personally, I think I’d have lain low for a bit until everyone had had some chance to forgive and forget before sticking my head back above the parapet.

Memo to the Audi driver who undertook me near the turn-off for Gosforth Park, then gesticulated at me angrily: it is perfectly good driving practice to remain in the outside lane when one is waiting for a group of slower moving vehicles ahead to complete an overtaking manoeuvre; and I leave a decent space between myself and the vehicle in front in the interests of safety, not to provide an opening for impatient and dangerous prats like you. That was a public service announcement.

This was the first day in living memory when I did not have the energy to shave or shower at any point. I feel that I am standing at the top of a slippery slope that ends on a park bench on Tyneside wearing three or four tattered jackets, urine-soaked trousers and shoes held together with chewing gum, drinking a yellowish liquid that might be cider (but does not actually taste of apples) from a two litre plastic bottle while indulging in frenetic but ultimately unsuccessful attempts at masturbation.

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