There are many things you can do if you are ever feeling glum. When I was a little girl, if I was in the doldrums I would put on the paper mache cow’s head that my parents and I had made, hop up on my stilts and go striding and lowing off down the road in search of walkers to startle. Now that I am a grown up I eat Quavers in my pants and drink wine from the bottle through a straw. I am thinking of writing a self-help manual. I am also thinking of changing the ‘in’ in the last sentence to a ‘from’.
If I wrote a self-help manual I would tell my readers that it was imperative that they get a pet. Pets are very important. I have Spatchcock, and despite her waking me at dawn with science fiction noises, I love her dearly. You don’t have to have a cat, though. I have always fancied a fist-sized, somnolent scarab that I could tether to a lapel-pin with a length of golden chain. It would roam about my jacket and upset people like the bag-faced old bitches in the bus station shop. Or a little wheeled squid I could drag around on a lead. Having certain types of pets, well-muscled and ferocious dogs for example, can make you feel safe and protected. I think it would be better to have a flock of birds, seagulls and eagles and herons and owls, their beaks curved like Bowie knives and their eyes impenetrable black.
The best way to be happy is to have easily achievable dreams. It is my goal in life to have a wine-rack with more than one bottle of wine on it, although admittedly this is so far proving impossible. Another ambition is to have someone answer one of the letters I leave in library books. I would like Snout’s mushroom farm to prosper. I’d like to finish a cryptic crossword (I don’t think the one in the Daily Mirror counts). Today I would like a man to come on Britain’s Got Talent. Literally. Easily achievable dreams. The key to happiness.