Time to ink big for a midlife crisis

THE celebrated American humourist (should that be humorist?) Garrison Keillor would always open a chapter of his Lake Wobegon stories with the phrase; “It has been a quiet week in Lake Wobegon...” before launching off into some gently amusing tale involving a Lutheran minister and some pickled herring.

And it has been a quiet week in Woebegone Towers. I have, however, no stories of fish or priests to enliven matters.

However the chickens are starting to look a little less woebegone and are starting to gain little white downy feathers where there were bald patches.

They’re still laying three eggs a day and the yolks of these eggs are getting more yellow; little blobs of sunshine.

Small But Fierce of Ipswich is bracing herself for the disappearance of the Ginger Ninja again - it’s only for five weeks, but there’ll be tears.


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The Ninja himself is celebrating an industrious holiday in which he has been working for money and, astonishingly, spending hardly any of it, thus returning to uni well in the black.

I, meanwhile, am contemplating the possibilities of having a proper midlife crisis. I have looked at it before but rejected it, probably because as we’re living so much longer I hadn’t reached midlife at that point. I have now.

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The difficulty is that most of the usual trappings are off the radar.

The traditional wotsit-substitute sports car, for instance. Having just, with palpable lack of ambition, swapped an old Nissan for a newer one it can safely be said that horse has bolted.

A Harley-Davidson. Possibly, but have you seen how expensive those things are?

Growing a ponytail. For goodness’ sake, there are limits.

A leather biker jacket. Great if you look like a young Marlon Brando, appalling if you look like the old one. We move on.

Trading SBF in for a younger model. A contentious one, this, to say the least. There are any number of flaws attached to such a move, ranging from the likelihood of identifying such a model prepared to take the role on (very low) to the risk of serious personal damage to me if such a move was even contemplated (very high).

An earring. Could experiment here with some of SBF’s broken jewellery and glue, but not confident of the outcome.

A tattoo. Aha! This could be the very fellow; nothing extravagant or indeed visible on a daily basis to the casual observer and relatively cheap. I feel a tryout for a design coming on - where is that permanent marker?

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