Did you know that [counter] people have been having a skeg at my little autonomous region?




Today I travelled to the Neeld Hall in Chippernam for a pint. I went on my own, which you may think is a bit sad. When I arrived I discovered that there were loads of other people there who had gone on their own. It was one of those rare occasions when I have gone somewhere with just one pint in mind and really jacked it in and gone home after just one pint. Actually, after my pint I had a cuppa tea and a biscuit because I recognised that it would have been a danger to my health to venture beyond one pint, and the staff there wouldn’t have permitted it anyway. 

I bet you cannot believe the strength of my willpower, can you? 

To tell you the truth, it wasn’t even a whole pint. It was only 470 millilitres, which is about 0.83 of a pint . . . enough space to slip a double whiskey in the top! 

To tell even more of the truth, I didn’t drink the pint. I donated it. Hand pulled ‘O’ Negative. A full bodied 1957 vintage and as red as Trotsky’s blood. This was good news, I felt, as what I parted with may one day save someone’s life. It also meant that I got to lie down for twenty minutes of my fast and furious life and that I lost about a pound in weight in five minutes. Also it was my fiftieth donation so, by means of a reward for parting with more than five gallons of body fluid down the years, I got a little shiny badge, a smart pen and a very nice letter from a woman called Lynda Hamlyn which contained her address and phone number. I must admit I was only expecting the badge and pen. I wonder what Lynda looks like and what she’s doing on Saturday night. I think I’ll write to her with my new pen and ask if she fancies a pint. 


blood badge

My bleeding badge.


The bit I didn’t like was when I was having my post donation drink and the Blood Transfusion Service tea lady saw that I had my Gold Award Box on my knee. She took it off me, held it aloft, asked for the attention of everybody present and told them about my incredible achievement (which had only taken me thirty six years). And then they all gave me a round of applause. This I found very embarrassing and also a bit ironic as when I first got to the session I had had to fill in a lengthy questionnaire to convince them that I had never had the clap. Half an hour later I was getting a clap from fifty or more different people. 

Today I also travelled to Calne to see Mark my accountant. One of the good things about being self employed is that I don’t have to worry about that bloody annual staff appraisal shenanigans where they tell you you’ve done really, really, really well but not well enough to have earned a pay rise so you'll have to work a lot harder in the next twelve months if you don't want a public flogging. However, behind the awkward embarrassment brought on by his plaudits, I did feel a warm glow of achievement. It delights me that most of my dear punters express gratitude for what I do to their feet but the accountant man is the only person in the world who has any idea about the overall success of my business. So his once-a-year words of congratulation work wonders for my self esteem. And then he went and spoilt it all by telling me what my tax bill was for the year. Twat!

Yesterday I travelled to Bishops Cannings on the banks of the broad, majestic Kennet & Avon Canal. I walked with my very good friends, the Corsham Wanderers (known to many as the Judean Popular Front of rambling) up a bit of the Wansdyke I had never done before, along a bit of the canal I had never done before, and into the Crown where I had never been before for a jar o’stout which was something I had more than a little experience of. But again there was a bit of a down side as I wore my smart new holiday socks that are supposed to be the comfiest socks in the world but my feet were just a tad stingy at the end of the walk. 

So I like my new socks because they are top quality and a bit expensive. And I also like my old socks because I never get sore feet with them. But which are better? There’s only one way to find out . . . FIGHT!!!

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