... and supply teachers on the happy lash have been allowed to keep the portraits of Our Beloved Leader that they took from the stand on the stage in place of the bands we had to send away when it turned out our license no longer covered music or dancing, which is a shame as a number of those teachers had asked me for a dance, and to try on my hat. They were charming, Saturday's lot. It turns out it's only the Friday nights that are full of... hmm, what's a nice word for them?... scrumpers. City scrumpers. Fucking apple thieves.
No, contrary to what the signs newly sprayed outside the town hall might suggest "It's only the rich who fucking steal" according to Eleanor around whose fake 'tache and bustier the exclusivity of Shunt's Red Klub came rapidly crashing down that first Friday: "I swear to God they don't know what it's like to fear losing something! They've no idea of property, one of them's just tried to nick me radio! My shoulder's rubbed fucking raw wi' this chip! - Oh, don't drink the Ribena from that fountain, it's got flies in."
And she's right. Not just about the flies. After all it was a suit who tried to steal my apples the Friday following... a suit who saw me lose it that one time (although I never called him a "crumb-bum". And I didn't so much lose it as "it" found me.) And it was Eleanor's charges that I bellowed at him. Quite a crowd had gathered outside by the time it came to turf him out... Did I cross a line? Bearing in mind what I later found out was going on up at the entrance, nah.
Anyway the Party's over now, and what got better? I learnt early on not to split hairs because that's exactly what the interviewees expect; point out instead how guarded their answers are. Don't sit there stroking your lobe like Duncan Bannatyne; be Trinny, be Susannah, be Nice...
The party's over, and long live the party. We've had another beautiful weekend, the roadworks outside Brixton station turn out to be kinetic sculpture (I can't find anything out about this, but there were definitely water wheels fashioned from hard hats and road cones skidding around the pavement of their own volition) and I've just come home to find bananas stuffed with chocolate being roasted over a newly dug hole in the garden - And now I've just been handed one.
And I get to keep the hat.