I have new slippers! They are very posh: leather soles and soft leather uppers, cost un bras et une jambe, I can tell you. And I can also tell you that they fit perfectly. They are to my feet what the croute is to a boeuf wellington.
....I could not have told you that five minutes ago.
Why not, Allsop? I hear you think.
Because, mes potes, this is the first time I have put them on.
Nothing remarkable in that, Allsop, I hear you think.
Well, if I tell you that I bought them nearly a year ago, I think you will understand why I feel moved to tell you about it, or rather, them, now.
You see, it's a problem I have, something rooted deep in my psyche. Whenever I buy something for myself, whether it's clothes, a book, a DVD player or a new computer program, I am unable to open the wrapping, fondle the goods and start using them. I have shirts still in the celephane from TWO years ago, I have unopened packs of y-fronts unsullied by the imperial bum, I have an untouched portable oil-fired heater from THREE years ago, I have a year-old voice-recognition program that has so far gone unrecognised. The list is not endless, but it's not far off endless.
Then why don't you stop buying things, Allsop? I hear you think.
Good point, you've got an incisive mind there, Moriarty.
Which brings me to my other problem: I love buying things.
When I buy things for others, it's a joy; when I buy something for myself, I am paralysed in the way that I have described.
So, why did you decide to open the box today and put the slippers on, Allsop? I hear you think. Dunno, guv, honest. A sudden urge to break another taboo, perhaps. Who knows?
Ah well, in the next life, I think I will come back as a snail. No credit cards, no retail therapy, no psychological blocks; all I ask is a damp corner, an abundance of hostas and a dearth of songthrushes. Oh yes, and being both male and female might answer a few other unresolved questions...