The outrage! As I lay prone on the operating table the anaesthetist leans over and asks: "Are you retarded?"
"RETARDED! HARDLY " I reply as majestically as is possible in one of those flimsy NHS gowns, fixing him with my best Paddington Bear hard stare. But there the conversation ends as the bottle of Bull's Blood that the nurse had warned me not to drink but I had to because Pavlov told me to took its effect.
The op went well though the drugs they used were rather strong so I apologise for any opium-induced flights of fancy in what follows. It's all the fault of the warlocks.
I note that the government seems to have planned it's whole agenda around me being on the slab (though I wasn't technically in a mortuary). The Witchfinder-General, Sandy Burnham-Drownham issued some more nonsense about the NHS and umbrellas. I wouldn't be surprised if the government has engineered my eye problems deliberately to keep me quiet. Like the time they suggested I went for woodland strolls with Dr Kelly.
And Hector Rule made use of his caretaker-manager moment by sending out a flurry of press releases with titles including "Umbrella governance is actually bloody brilliant", "Why we should merge with the union, Divide", "The Umbrella Bank is a right waste of time" and "Don't wear ties". Actually, I agree with the last one but that's not the point.
Speaking of the umbrella bank, it's such a shame that people always try and stand in the way of progress and comments such as "we don't need it" and "there is no appetite for loans" are disappointing. The evidence suggests that they do want loans. In offices all over the country, whenever someone is nipping out to get a sarnie at lunch time and it stars raining they aways ask around to see which of their colleagues can lend them an umbrella. But like any new idea some people simply haven't got the imagination to envisage future demand.
Why, picture the scene, a small urban pub, 25 years back, lager leaking from the kegs, gob all over the floor, Black Lace seeping from the jukebox. Two handsome folks on their bar tools (sic):
Dylan (name plucked entirely at random, it could so easily have been Heston or Kevin or Curly): "Well I'm certainly not getting one of these new fangled Sinclair C5 electric car thingies."
Deborah (ditto, it could easily have been Beth or Debra): "Nor me, I am quite happy with my Vauxhall Viva."
Dylan: "Exactly, no evidence of demand."
This scenario could equally be applied to the invention of the TV, which people said wouldn't catch on. But here we are 80 years later and quality remains paramount. If the Umbrella Bank is allocating brollies in 80 years from now based on shallow talentless freak shows and the public's opinion via a phone vote then we can say that the nay-sayers were proved well and truly wrong and my analogy was the right one to use.
As AC/DC might have put it if they were from Oxfordshire, I have been "Back in Blacbury" recuperating and have bought a selection of Xmas cheese from Lidl - Dairylea, Laughing Cow and Primula are all safely stored in the outside carsey with the festive fizz. Which is where Barkles is also currently locked up too after cocking his leg and baptising the Christmas tree decorations.