This is a true story.
But then I would say that, wouldn’t I?
I’ve got the look, I know it. My hair is a fortnight beyond tidy and several days greasier than clean, my shirt has seen the inside of the laundry basket more than once since Monday without getting as far as the washing machine. My trousers are a tiny bit short in the leg. I do own a shoe brush but the polish in the tin is dry and cracked.
It’s not that I don’t know how to take care of myself. I lived alone before I was married. Did my own washing and ironing, cooked – not side plate and two sets of cutlery, but from a recipe sometimes. When you have a family, though, you stop saying I went there, I saw that. It becomes we went, we saw. Then when the focus changes again, you and I are hard to resurrect.
I am the man in the bus queue who picks his nose. I am the guy with the brown paper takeaway bag you pass in the street, whose features twist in time with some internal debate. I stand too close.
So I would say that, wouldn’t I, while you look over my shoulder and count in your head to decide how soon you can politely move away and talk to someone else. But it is true, all the same. In spirit.