Albert learns that some work looks a lot harder than some other work

Albert feels proud as he steps back to admire the wardrobe he has just built from a flat pack.  For once, he can see and touch the results of his labours.

This then reminds him of when he was working at home for a time while there was work being done on his house.  Real men were knocking things down and building walls.  Meanwhile, up in his bedroom, Albert was tapping onto his laptop, responding to emails and writing reports.

“Well, I’m actually working very hard as well,” Albert decided not to say to the sweating workmen when he ventured downstairs to offer them cups of tea.

Albert learns that the word involved says a lot about his character

Albert meets two old friends for a drink.  After a couple of minutes, he clocks it.

‘Are you two….involved now?’ he asks.

They both smile.

Then Albert thinks about the word involved.  Albert’s never been involved, not really.

Perhaps that’s sad.  Sadder still, though, would be trying to involve yourself.

Albert learns that sometimes people have to work at taking offence

Albert accidentally brushes against a man in the corridor.

‘For goodness’ sake,’ the man complains, tutting loudly at Albert and giving him a cold stare.

And Albert realises something he should have worked out years ago: sometimes offence is something you actively have to take.  It doesn’t just arrive, unbidden.

The Homemade Car

car

For the last couple of months I’ve been building my own car, pretty much from scratch.  It’s quite a thing I don’t mind telling you.  And believe me, I’ve told everyone about it.  So okay, I’ve probably made a few rash predictions about how fast it can go, how many people it can carry, but you know what, I’m proud of it, really proud of it, and not ashamed to say so.  Not everyone can build a car after all.

But then over the last couple of weeks I’ve been taking it out on the roads.  If I’m honest with myself – which I admit is a rare activity for me – it’s not gone quite as well as I’d anticipated.  Last Tuesday, for example, I scratched the driver’s door on a neighbour’s boundary wall.  And then yesterday, I couldn’t seem to brake at all when turning right which led to a few – shall we say – issues.

And finally, today, I wrapped it around a tree just up the road from where I live.  Now don’t worry – I was okay, I was fine.  I just sat in the crushed car and contemplated my next move.  And then a police officer tapped my window.

‘Is everything okay here sir?’ he asked me.  ‘Is there some kind of problem?’

For once, I didn’t know what to say.  ‘I just don’t get it,’ I said, shaking my head in disbelief.  ‘I was so certain this was a fine-tuned machine.’

Infrequently Asked Questions for Valentine’s Day

questions

So why does she come here?

Why does she insist on being so intelligent and wise, so kind to everyone, so interested in what they are saying?

And why does she always dress so tastefully and with such style?  Why are her eyes always so piercing and curious?

Why the surprisingly full and ready laugh to all my bad jokes, destroying the final stubborn shreds of my defense?

And why does anyone claim that studying such flawless beauty can ever be a calm, contemplative experience when in truth it is the most deranging and pernicious activity of all?

Why can’t she just be perfect somewhere else and leave me to my hopeless peace?