Saturday, 29 August 2009


Right now, I have one real imaginary friend, and her name is Amulet.

Amulet tattoos people for a living, deep in the heart of Somerset, where many people find it necessary to get a tattoo in order to make themselves more interesting (correct me if I'm wrong, Am). Am had a nice, huge cat which I never met - but I haven't met her yet either. I stand a much better chance of meeting Am though, because (last time I checked) she is still alive, and the cat sadly isn't. Am got really upset when her moggie died, quite understandably, and posted a big photo up of herself holding him/her in happier times, like a kind of memorial. This is how I now have a rough idea of what Amulet looks like, to the extent that I might recognise her if I bumped into her on the streets of her home town.

I say 'rough', because in the photo, she has dyed hair and - unlike dead cats - hair can be undyed, but most same-breed cats look the same to me, and I've never heard of an un-dead cat, if you leave Schrodinger out of the equation. Also, it's amazing how little information can be gleaned from a single photo, without the benefit of hindsight. This is why there is such a thing as police mug-shots, and life-models in art schools.

Even so, I fancy I can see a premonition of the grief to come when I look into Am's eyes in that photo.

During one drunken evening, her indoors suggested I should get a small dog of the type I favour (Yorkie, whippet, type thing) which would be small enough to humanely keep in our town flat, and exercise without having to drive to the Wiltshire Downs every day, and - for a while - I seriously considered it.

I started to imagine what I would call it, and had a perfect image in my mind of what the little fellow would look like, once he had grown up to his full 11 inches in height. After a few more glasses of wine, it was almost settled that I would get this little mut who - I was sure - was patiently waiting in the Claverton Dog and Cat Home for me to take him back to our loving environment. Then I had a couple more glasses of wine.

After a while, her indoors asked when I was going up there to find him and bring him home. Tears welled up in my eyes as I said it could not be, and we must never have a dog. Understandably, she asked why not, all of a sudden? I replied - choking with emotion in a high pitched, squeaky voice:

"Because I couldn't stand it if anything happened to him!"

My imaginary dog is still waiting for me up at the Dog's home ....


  1. Woo!! I found how to comment. Thank you for that introduction of me. My hair is different now. I have red hair extensions in! However, I would like to point out that my cat was not particularly big as I don't want people getting the wrong idea about my pussy.
    We do generally only tattoo people who are already quite interesting as they need a good irea before we will tattoo them. I have 14 tattoos now, so imagine how fascinating I must be!

  2. I've often wondered how fascinating you are Am - and I like the idea of them having to have a good 'irea' before you puncture it.

    Sorry I said your pussy was big - send me the tattoo and I'll set the record straight.

  3. Hard to send a tattoo, Tom!! Bugger my typing. I was in a bit of a rush last night. Of course, what I meant was a "good ikea". And we all know how hard they are to find! Always willing to accept a bit of flat-packed Swedish furniture, especially if I haven't had to go to the hateful place!

  4. Oh and I don't tattoo I pierce...

  5. So do I, but I prefer it with a Scottish drummer playing along too.