Albert learns that the present continuous is a useful thing to think about when you want to really relax

Albert decides that the present isn’t just now.  The present continuous stretches back to when humans first evolved and then right up to when we’ll live as almost endless computers.  We’re not so significant, Albert decides, that each day has any value.

Carpe diem?  Nope, Albert decides, let the day be: seize the epoch and grab the millennium by all means.  Bring your ancestors, friends and descendants along for the ride.  But squander some days if you wish.  Because life’s too precious to worry about wasting the odd day here and there.

And with this thought Albert lets his Sunday paper fall to the ground and returns to the serious business of snoozing in the garden.

Albert learns that he’ll probably never be a great sleeper

Albert tends to sleep really badly.  He makes loads of boring mistakes.  He would love to have creative dreams of submerged cities or strange creatures chasing him down long corridors.

Instead, Albert dreams that he’s lost the minutes of a previous boring meeting or that he’s left an unwashed mug on his desk.  Heavy sigh.

Albert has to admit to himself that he’ll probably never be a great sleeper.

The Panacea

Feeling a tad groggy, I went to see the doctor.

‘Perhaps you should try sleeping more,’ she suggested.

‘Is that it?’ I asked. ‘Is there nothing I can take?’

‘Well,’ she replied, ‘I suppose you could try taking offence two or three times a day. That usually perks people up.’