How immature am I really, I wondered? How long is a Baltic tapeworm? How dry is a dry gulch in the desert in the dry season? I was trying to second-guess my own thinking – what would I do if I was me? How many fleas does a flea-ridden cur have when it is covered in fleas from head to toe? How long is a weasel? Nobody will tell you more than I and no one will tell you less. For as long as I can remember I’ve had the ambition to open up a cake shop, a kind of a niche outlet for doughnuts and suchlike. I would call it ‘The Laughing Doughnut’ and I would serve mainly policeman. I’d only serve the laughing, jolly, rosy-cheeked kind however, not the other kind. Not the bad kind. I have the logo all worked out and everything. But then just the other day I changed my mind and decided that it was a fancy French patisserie that I would open up instead. I would call it ‘Le Grande Delice’. Then I changed my mind again and I decided that it would be a bric-a-brac shop, full of useless garbage that no one would ever want. The shop would have no doors and no windows and it wouldn’t exist on earth but out of sight in one of the lower dimensions. I would have no interaction with the real world at all – I just sit my pointless shop, puttering around incessantly – slowly but surely growing in myself like an ingrown toenail. My personality-shell would calcify and seal over. I know this all sounds a bit random but that’s just the kind of guy I am! A bit random, but people like me because of that, I think. It’s a bit quirky and everyone likes quirky. That isn’t to say that I’m not deeply dissatisfied with my life however because I am. ‘Certain things are true,’ I declared loudly (and not without a slight trace of pomposity and self-satisfaction either, I might add) and certain other things are not true and I hold this to be the basis of my philosophy…’ My own genius still takes me by surprise sometimes you see. Some people say that I haven’t got a pleasant personality but from my own careful thoughts on the subject I deduce that they are wrong. They belong to the evil world which was never supposed to come into existence but which did nevertheless, and this is the Cosmic Error. This is the Great Mistake which now can never be undone – at least not easily. That is our work, that is our labour – to somehow correct, and reverse the Cosmic Error. To wrestle with the forces of darkness. Not that you’d ever get any thanks for it, mind you! The abuse that I personally have to put up with is frankly unbelievable. As a child, when I was only knee-high to a centipede, I decided that I wanted to become the saviour of the universe – being a mere hero or superhero meant nothing to me. I set my sights high and this is always a good thing when one is young. It gives one something to work towards and stops one from becoming lazy, which is a curse. Later I fell into bad company and became a street hoodlum, a wide-boy, a ‘jelly head’ – jostling people rudely as they went about their business in the shopping malls, causing them to drop their shopping and use foul and distasteful words. I had fallen a long way short of my lofty aim and my grand vision was in tatters all around me. That’s when I started turning in on myself – I became morose and ill tempered. I didn’t shave and stopped taking care of my personal hygiene. The joy of life had fled, leaving what behind? Leaving me as you now see me, fumbling foolishly in the dark, scared of things that only exist in my own imagination, asking questions that can never be answered, and which don’t deserve to be answered anyway.