Nicholas Lezard is a literary critic for the Guardian and also writes for the Independent. He writes the Down and Out in London column for the New Statesman.
I nervously leave a message, before reflecting on the fact that Carman died in 2001.
The rest of the tidying we shall pass over in horrified silence, except to say only that unloading the empties into the bottle bank took half an hour.
I am expecting a visitor, and I would like to give her the impression that I am actually a civilised man.
Funny thing, nausea; when you’re in the grip of it you can’t think of anything else, and when it’s extreme you really begin to accept that death is the only release.
By an amazing coincidence, the chickens have exactly the same names as Jacob Rees-Mogg’s children.
I googled “repulsive Scottish public figures” and absolutely nothing came up of any use.
The similarities between our situations are obvious. Kutkh has been given an airy cage, with branches and a water bowl; a simulacrum of home, not the real thing.
“You sound awfully ill,” I say solicitously, doing my best to provide a hint. I give up, and decide to drink myself to death.
“Thank God Mum isn’t here to see this,” says the boy.
I get on with my children so well perhaps because they are grateful to see exactly what they should not do in order to have a rich and happy life.