Vote DOGNAPPED! You know it makes sense

So – here’s something a little different from my usual scribbling.
Okay, who said, ‘About time too!
There’s no need.
And the rest of you can stop sniggering.
Honestly if I’ve got to come over there I swear that I’ll…
I should count to what?
Oh all right. 1,2…
…8, 9, 10. Thanks, I’m feeling a lot better now.
Now I may have mentioned this before, but Misty’s book, DOGNAPPED! is in the final of THE PEOPLE’S BOOK PRIZE and…
Eh?
Was that you – again?
It was, wasn’t it? ‘You never bloody shut up about it!‘ indeed.
I’ve got your card marked, matey.
Anyway, for the rest of you who are at least kind enough to show just a little bit of interest, then let me explain.
No not you, smarty pants.
You can go and stand over there – in the corner. No, go on, further, further and a bit more. That’ll do. I’m not speaking to you again.
Ever.

4
THE PEOPLE’S BOOK PRIZE.
It must be important, it’s in capitals.
And, ha ha, the final is in the capital too.
I know, I know – I don’t know how I think them up.

Well I thought it was funny! In fact I think a bit of wee came out. It must be an age thing!

So, London.
Down the smoke.
A week on Tuesday.
Me and Kate get to have a bit of posh nosh.
In Stationers Hall down by old St. Paul’s cathedral.
For the awards ceremony.
It might even be on a Sky News podcast thingy.
I’ve got to wear a dicky bow.
No, I haven’t bought it – I borrowed it off Posh Dave, he’s in a male voice choir, so he has all the gear.
I don’t even have to tie it, it’s on a bit of elastic. But don’t tell anyone, I’d hate to spoil the illusion.IMG_0216
So there we have it.
How about that then?

Of course you know what it’s about. The gang of dogs on the canal barge – got it now?

Well you said you’d read it, I told you to borrow it from Dudley library. Yes the one with Ashley in it, remember? I knew you’d bring that up – again! Here he is look, I know you like to see him, occasionally

I’m chuffed.
So’s Misty.
Pardon?
Will we win? Dunno – I’ll let you know.
Oh, hang on I nearly forgot.

You will vote for me & Misty won’t you?
Yes, that does include you in the corner.
Yes, I’m sorry – just a bit tense with all this going on. Hope you understand.

Anyway:-

Children’s section
DOGNAPPED!
http://www.peoplesbookprize.com

Thank you.

 

IT’S ALL MINE!

Sometimes something triggers a question in your brain that just demands an answer.
Take the other night as I was sitting in the pub for example.
Yes, I know – we’ll argue about my excessive drinking later, o.k?
Someone has to keep the brewing industry going after all.
And it may as well be me.
I insist. It’s no trouble, honestly.
Sorry?
I’m looking ‘a bit put out’?
Well now you come to mention it I am feeling a tad disappointed.
It’s nothing really, nothing at all. Don’t worry about it.

I just thought you might have offered to buy me a drink, that’s all…

Anyway, back to the subject of my rambling thought processes.

On the wall of said pub was a picture.
Of a pit head.IMG_0449
And the winding gear.
There used to be a lot around here in the Black Country.
Probably the name of the area hints at that very fact.
I remember passing one such industrial monolith on my way to school back in the sixties.
Of course I took no notice, it was not an unusual feature back in the day.

But – thinking about it now, who on Earth came up with that?
Imagine the scenario – wealthy landowner calls the local gravedigger to his mansion.

Gravedigger deferentially enters the drawing room, wringing his flat cap in his hands and stands in front of the landowners expansive desk nervously awaiting the reason for his summons.
The landowner stubs out his cigar, ‘Ah, good of you to come my man. Scargill isn’t it?’
Okay, okay – we’ll argue how Arthur Scargill’s ancestors got from Dudley to Yorkshire later, eh? Probably something to do with black pudding and flat caps for all I know, there is a bit of commonality there after all.
”Tis indeed Scargill sir, but Ayenock’ll do.’
‘Good man, good man. How’s the family?’
‘Fine sir thanks for asking. Missus popped another bab out last week while she was shovelling out earth for that canal you wanted. Fifteen that is now I think.’
‘How is she?’
‘Pregnant again, sir.’
‘Excellent work, that man.’
‘Thank you sir. ‘Fraid the two year old ain’t ready yet – turned a bit sickly, got a slight touch of cholera I think – but the one above him, she’ll be three next week and ready to start building hovels for your workers any day soon.’ A slight hesitation for an awkward pause, more twisting of the cap into a figure eight, then, ‘Erm, pardon me asking sir, but what is it you want me to do?’
‘Ah, that: Ayenock, I’d like you to dig me a hole.’
‘Oh I’m sorry sir, I didn’t know you was poorly like.’
‘Not for me to fit in you fool, I need a hole I can own.’
”Well ‘smy job sir, don’t matter to me what you does with it. Usual is it? Six foot by two and a half foot by six foot deep?’
‘Not exactly no, I’d like it a bit bigger.’
‘Bigger sir?’
‘Erm yes. About twenty feet square should suffice.’
Twenty foot – bugger me! Beggin’ pardon sir. Has the elephant died up at Dudley zoo?’
‘No my good sir, it hasn’t. And anyway the zoo won’t open for another two hundred years at least.’
‘Sorry sir, getting ahead of myself as usual. But I has to say it’ll take me an’ old ‘arry all day to dig that out at six foot deep so it will sir.’
‘And I’d like it a bit deeper.’
‘Eh?’
‘Deeper.’
‘Oh, deeper is it? Exactly how deep were you thinking?’
‘Until you hit coal.’
‘Coal.’
‘Coal, yes.’
‘What’s coal then when it’s out?’
‘It’s like a black rock that you burn.’
‘You want to burn rock? Wood not flammable enough for you?’
‘Yes, no, I mean, hrumph! My dear man please remember your place and address me as, “sir”
‘Have you had a bump on the head? Sorry, have you had a bump on the head, sir?’
‘Of course not! I need the coal to smelt some iron ore.’
‘Or what sir?’
‘No Ayenock, iron is ore.’
‘It’s or what…’

Now at this juncture I should perhaps point out that this reasoned debate could take some time, so let’s just cut to the chase…

‘Oh! Iron ore is it?’
‘What else would it be?’
‘Dunno sir, you lost me at “coal”
‘Scar.., I mean Ayenock, I envisage a day when men like me will be able to drive around in horseless carriages.’
‘Riiiight…’
‘And fly through the air in hollow tubes.’
‘If you say so…’
‘So I need that hole in the ground.’
‘Of course you do, sir.’
‘When can you start.’
‘Well, we’ve got a charred charcoal burner, he got a bit too involved in his work, and three suspected plague victims to inter by this afternoon, but I reckon we could make a start about three o’clock.’
‘Good fellow.’
‘Beggin’ pardon sir, but I do see a couple of slight problems.’
‘You do?’
‘Well first up sir, there’s gas.’
‘Gas?’
‘Bit of a problem working with old ‘arry in a confined space, see sir. ‘Specially if he’s been on the beans and Norbert’s Old Peculiar the night before.’
‘I’ll give you a canary.’
‘A fucking canary! Why thank you sir. Help no end that will.’
‘You said, “a couple of problems.” The second is?’
‘Yessir. Water.’
Oh, I’ll make sure you have all you can drink.’
‘No sir – it’s holes see. They tend to fill up. With water.’
‘Ah!’
‘Bit of a problem if you don’t mind me saying.’
‘Thought of it already, Ayenock.’
‘You have sir?’
‘Had you there didn’t I! Yes, I did foresee that very problem and I’ve asked my good friend Newcomen to come up with a solution.’
‘Very good sir. And has he?’
‘Of course. Bright chap. He’s going to pump it out.’
‘Pump it?’
‘Out, yes. With a beam engine.’
‘A beam what?’
‘Engine. It’s made out of iron ore.’
‘Ore what?’
‘Don’t start that again.’
‘Course not sir, but pardon me asking – isn’t making ore what you need the coal for?’
‘It is, Ayenock. Must I keep explaining myself?’
‘But begging pardon, sir, isn’t that putting the cart before the horsepower so to speak? Slightly? Sir.’
‘Ah!’
‘Bit of a problem, sir?’
‘A minor hiccup. You go and start digging whilst I ponder the solution.’
‘Yessir. Mind me asking sir. What’s this hole in the ground going to be called?’
‘Oh, that’s easy, Scargill. It’ll be called, “mine.”

You couldn’t make it up! Oh – perhaps you can then…

Friendship is a wonderful thing. If for example you had the idea that you could run the country better than the present government, even though you had absolutely no experience and were totally politically naive, you would know that you could rely on your friends to heap upon you scorn, ridicule and to offer no help whatsoever. But in the unlikely event that you did succeed, those same friends would expect lavish praise for their endeavours.

So how would you go about such a venture, given that the political process is slow and that you are too impatient to go through the proper channels. It might be an idea to form your own party, over the internet of course, that should speed things up a bit. All you’d need to do then would be to increase your public profile – well they say sex sells…

This is such a story. It couldn’t possibly work of course – now how do I go about setting up a website?

You can call me Dave, by the way.

17796098_10154684238514086_7837186691258039449_n

pm. com – a play by David J Robertson. (Finalist with children’s book – DOGNAPPED! – in The People’s Book Prize 2017)

Coming to a stage near you – provided you live in The Black Country of course. (I know what you’re thinking, ‘Bloody hell, he wrote that quick!’)

See the results here – 9th and 10th June,       Gig Mill Methodist Church Hall, Witton Street, Stourbridge, DY8 3YG

 

For ticket information contact – acomedytheatregroup@hotmail.co.uk

IMG_0220

The Black Country – has it’s finger on the rest of the country’s pulse.

Bostin!

 

I hate to mention it, but there’s another vote coming up…

Hello again.
Nice to see you.
Oh sorry – I really didn’t mean to do that in a Bruce Forsyth voice.
I’m not good at impressions.
What?
You’d noticed.
Thanks.
Anyway, how are things with you?
Really?
Oh dear.
They’re protruding by how much!?
Surely you can get some cream for that?
I should ask the chemist.
Pardon?
How am I?
Well funny you should ask.

It’s like this, remember the…

What did you say?
Look, I know you were only asking out of politeness and didn’t really want an answer, but I thought that seeing as you brought it up…

Remember the play wot I wrote…

No, now you mention it, I know I can’t ‘do‘ Ernie Wise either, but this play thing…

Not the one I did for the radio, no. It turns out that the BBC don’t posterknow a good thing when it’s staring them in the face – bastards!

I was talking about pm. com, the one that I wrote for the stage.
Yes, it was a few years ago, I’m glad you remember.
Well I only got someone to go and do it!

Yeah!
How about that then?
Honestly – I’ve never seen anyone so underwhelmed.
I thought you might be pleased.

Sorry, you thought what?
That it would just be,’something else for me to keep banging on about.

There’s no need!

But let me finish telling you, ‘cos you’ll never guess what.
I’m in it!
Cool or what?
In a purely am-dramish sort of way.
So I’m line learning.

I knew you’d say that!
Just because I wrote it doesn’t mean that I know it off by heart, no.
I have to practice my art.
Now I’m a thespian.
Getting used to the smell of the greasepaint, the roar of the crowd.
Of course I couldn’t compare myself to Burton or Gielud, well not yet anyway.

Arise Sir Dave, I can picture it now.
Me and Madge.
Her with a sword in her hand.
What do you mean, ‘you wish you had a sword right now‘?
I’ll take that to mean that you don’t want a ticket then.

They’re only three pounds.
I know – cheap as chips!
I’ve got friends on Facebook see.
Surprising as that sounds, yes I have.
And I was thinking that if any of them, in say Oz or Trumpton, fancied popping across for the evening that the low price of entry may be of benefit.
Help out with the air fare.
And the airport taxes.
See how thoughtful I am?

Now there was no call for name calling, ‘one act short of a scene!
Honestly, some people.

Afraid that we can’t put them up though.
My mate Nige is coming over from Ludlow and he’s already claimed the couch. Perhaps you could help by…

Oh! I see. They can **** right off to where?

Isn’t that the chain Lenny Henry advertises?

17342786_10154627669764086_1081957200397871344_n

Anyway, it’s a political drama – of a sort.
About the ‘Countrywide Reform Alliance Party.
Well in these days of uncertainty and surprise after Brexit, Trump and Leicester City, I thought it best to concentrate on the issues that concern us all.
The cost of beer and football admission prices for example – that sort of thing. Hard hitting and factual.

Pardon?

It spells what!

Perhaps I’d better have a rethink then, eh?

Isn’t copy and paste wonderful…

I know, I know.

Don’t keep on!

‘If I carry on like this I’ll never get anything done.’

Whinging on like that!

I’ll log out in five minutes, o.k?

…hang on, just got to…

…well, did you ever?

I’ve never seen one that shape before.

Have you?

I didn’t think so.

What?

Yes, I’m coming. (not in that way madam, you’re on the wrong blog site! If you want that sort of stuff I think you press ctrl, alt, delete and ask for Tarquin).

Where were we?

Ah yes, you were trying to get my attention.

And I was…

…any minute…

…hold up!

Did you see that!?

Blimey! She’s extremely flexible.

For someone with an Adams apple.

Yes I know.

It’s an addiction.

My name is David J Robertson and I’m a social media addict.

Extreme measures are called for – I really should write out one hundred times:-

I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.
I must stop procrastinating, get on with my WIP and ignore my social media accounts.

Ah now – where was I?

Oh yeah, have you seen that guy with the banjo and the goat on Facebook?

I must leave a comment.

‘Lol!’

And share it!

Funniest thing I’ve seen since…

Whoa!

What’s this?

Oh no, not the ice skating chimp with the puppy and the kitten again!

Some people!

Seriously, I’m going to have to unfriend them.

I’m just so sick of this cutesy stuff!

It just makes me want to chuff up my dinner.

But before I let them drift into social obscurity I’m going to comment,

‘FFS!’

Just to show them.

Bastards!

 

I wonder what’s happening on Twitter?

 

 

No, I’m not a sexual deviant…

Well what a palaver that was!
“Can you do a talk about your books at our community library?” I was asked.
“Of course!”
Well I was hardly going to say no was I! My second book, In The Doghouse, has just been released on an unsuspecting public and I’m hardly going to pass up the opportunity to shout about it, am I?
“That’s great. Leave it with us and we’ll let you know when.”
“Thanks very much,” well I was chuffed to be asked.

3

I didn’t have long to wait for the call.
Unfortunately it wasn’t the one that I was expecting.
“Are you DBS checked?”
“What?”
“DBS checked, you know – it used to be CRB until they changed it.”
Ah yes, the ministry of Silly Acronyms and Initials strikes again.
SAI what!
To be honest I had come across it before. They ask for the same thing in schools too.
And I don’t blame them. After all they don’t know me from Adam. And there are, as we are sadly only too aware, some very dubious characters about. I mean, have you seen my author photo?
But – and here’s the rub, if you go onto the website for the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly the Criminal Records Bureau in case you were wondering) you soon discover that it is nigh on impossible as an author to get yourself DBSed.
Pardon?
No – I know DBSed is not a proper word, I’m not totally barking, but I did a blog about making words up some time back, the one called  ‘ROPOPOV’, if you remember, so please pay attention.

rascal-soaked
And sit up straight at the back while we’re at it.
Apparently you are not allowed to apply for the aforementioned accreditation as an author although your alliterative acumen may authenticate any application.
Your employer has to do it.
And how many of us scribblers has one of them.
O.K., for the day job perhaps yes.
But for this secretive activity that many of us undertake under cover of the wee small hours of the morning?
Well that’s all a bit suspicious isn’t it!?
Surely only sexual deviants and house burglars work to such an unsociable timescale.

So I’m stuffed.
I ask around.
A few Facebook groups that I belong to.
And bless them, they come up with some suggestions.

Among them is the spiffing idea that us poor bloody English who wish to get ourselves checked out should perhaps apply to the Scottish government instead.
What!!!
Well I take back what I said about Nicola Sturgeon a few blogs back.
After all, what better way of getting money out of the auld enemy than relieving them of 25 pounds sterling for telling one of their number that they’re not actually a criminal.
And after all, what does it matter to them?
As long as we don’t travel past the wall that the Italians built to keep them out of our bit we could be Jack the bloody Ripper for all they care.
Incidentally am I the only one who thinks that Trumps wall is a bit of a storm in a teacup. The last time I looked there was a bloody big fence there already – perhaps it’s not the principle they’re arguing about, just the best method of construction.

So, dear Nicki (hope she doesn’t think me too informal) – I’m an honest to goodness upstanding citizen, o.k? Oh, and just in case it gives me some brownie points my surname is Robertson and the ‘J’ stands for Jimmy, sorry James.

Anyway it came today.
My DBS certificate.
I’m not a criminal after all (I did keep quiet about the speeding ticket issued by P.C. Sluts – honestly I swear that was his name – in 1999, but I doubt Nicola cares about that either, she’s in love with Angela, not Teresa and the Germans have unrestricted autobahns!)

So I’m not a criminal. I could have told them that.
But now I have piece of paper to prove it.
And I didn’t have to paint my face blue or cry, ‘freedom,‘ to do it.

Pssst! Want an author talk doing? Very cheap, because unfortunately I am a bit damaged.

No, thanks for asking but there’s no need for concern. It’s just that I’m limping a bit. I fell off the back of a lorry!

Resolutions – be careful what you wish for…

Oh, hello, nearly missed you there – huddled up the corner like that.
Do you want me to..?
No.
Oh, o.k.
Well I’ll just sit here for a bit if you don’t mind.
No, I won’t say anything.
I’ll be nice and quiet.

Dum, de dum de dum.
Pardon?
Oh sorry, I didn’t realise I was humming, no.
Nor drumming my fingers on the table.
I’ll just…
Humming and drumming. Heh! I made a rhyme.
Oops!
Sorry again.
Yes – quietly.
Like a church mouse, eh?

Did you do it?
No, I know we agreed, but I was just curious.
About that thing you said you were going to do.
The New Year resolution, yes.
That.
Did you!
Really!
And how did that work out then?
Oh dear!
Still, at least you tried.
Well yes, I suppose if you had a pound off everyone who said that you would be very rich indeed.

And you never know it might grow back.
Eventually.

No wonder you look a bit…
I’m concerned that’s all.
I do consider you to be one of my best…
Oh.
Right.
Not if I were the last person where?
On Earth.
Oh dear.

Do you suppose that if the New Year thing had turned out better you might, you know, have had a bit of a, shall we say, rosier outlook on things.
And people, yes.

Well I suppose it’s a perfectly reasonable reaction.
Do you think you’ll try again?
If at first you don’t succeed and all that.
Oh!
Well can’t you make a new one?
Or claim on the insurance?
Oh it wasn’t.
That’s tricky.
But it was yours wasn’t it?
Really!
He’s not going to be best pleased is he?
Have you told him?
Well sooner the better I’d say.
Get it over with.
Give him the abridged version.
No need for all the nasty details.
Least said, soonest mended and all that.
Sorry!
Sorry.
Just an unfortunate turn of phrase.
No I know you can’t physically mend it.
Not when it’s in that many pieces anyway.
No!
Really?
Well I don’t know what temperature that stuff melts at but the flames must have been really fierce.
Who’d have thought…
Well I know you never did, obviously.
Otherwise you wouldn’t have…
Would you?

So what did the police say?
Now let’s get this straight.
They were here anyway.
Because the neighbours had already complained.
So they saw it happen?
Well that’s handy.
Can’t ask for better witnesses that that then.
They got what?
An ambulance each!
Gosh!

Yes I did hear the sirens.
And see the flashing blue lights.
I did wonder what was going on, but I never thought…

Tell you what though, look on the bright side.
Yes, of course, there’s always a positive spin if you search hard enough.
Well if you give me a chance I’ll tell you.

Come here and I’ll whisper.
No I don’t want everyone to know.
Lean this way a bit more.
That’s it.
Ready?

Just think of it like this.
Only 365 days and you can have another go!

OW!
That wasn’t very nice!
I wish I hadn’t asked now!