I sit here shivering and occasionally sneezing into a variety of paper tissues, having finally dragged my arse out of bed. Of course, now I'm interminably worried about what's going to happen to my clients while I'm not at work, but knowing how extreme my emotions get, worrying might give me an ulcer, and that's something I really don't need. I'm not well. That's enough.
In hindsight, perhaps it wasn't the best of ideas to go out until midnight last night. But being a teetotaller, it's not like I went out and got a hangover. Nobody got drunk, either, so it was all quite a pleasant affair. But it was, after all, my friend-who-is-a-teacher's birthday. And so I went straight to her flat immediately after work (it's thirty seconds from the train station, so hardly much of a mission) and, after picking up the gang, we went in search of pizza. We're so cool.
Although it's the young raver who generally provides our bi-weekly source of smut (commenting the other day that a camping website we were looking at "sounds like a sex blog", a slightly unnerving quip - but I agree with him, it read like something out of Lady Laid Bare), it's my friend-who-is-a-teacher who can occasionally be downright filthy. She is lovely, but she will freely admit that working with children during the day meant that her slightly dodgy side - the one with all the dirty jokes and comments so lightning-quick that even I miss them sometimes - does emerge in the evenings, when in close contact with her friends - which means, of course, us.
Not that she made any until after the two screaming girls appeared.
We were sitting in the back room of a local pub after having had the meal in Prezzo (we didn't want to go to a bar, so we found a quiet back room to sit in), having a discussion about music videos and the EDF Energy advert - which we looked at while I noticed that the pub had started playing James - when two very loud girls appeared in the doorway screaming at the top of their voices, ran around us screaming a few times, and then ran out of the same door.
For a while everyone looked as if they'd been slapped around a bit with a large trout.
"We got you a screamagram," said Mane eventually. "It was a lot cheaper than a kissogram." That broke the silence, and everyone laughed. We didn't stop laughing for a while afterwards as it suddenly became apparent that Mane's brother's penis was hanging out of his flies. (Turns out it was a bit of wood eventually, as he is an arboriculturalist, but it was still... well, not shocking, maybe the word is "typical"... for the first couple of seconds.)
As my body had started to commit seppuku from the inside out, I decided that now this would be the time to take my leave. It was only after tugging for a few moments that I realised my coat was refusing to leave with me. I was about to remark upon this (I would have left it, but it had my throat sweets in a pocket), but my friend-who-is-a-teacher saved me from the trouble.
"I was wondering what that feeling was," she shared, "before I realised I'd been sitting on your toggle for a while!"
Everyone looked at me. I paused.
"Well, that explains all the orgasms!" I heard myself saying. That got the laugh, so before I could feel any more awkward, I graciously gave everyone a hug and then left the pub.
Stepping out into the cold night air, I was abundantly aware that I was feeling a lot more unwell than I had done at work, but also that it had been a good night. And my friends had lived up to their glorious reputations. I was only sorry that I'd had to leave before more dirty jokes could be peddled... but I really needed to go home.
That was when I realised I didn't have my bag with me. So back I went.