Alexei Sayle column

Over the last couple of months I seem to have developed a strange attraction for sick and distressed animals. It started in late July when one lunchtime, returning to my house after buying a sandwich, I found a tiny kitten, its fur matted with blood, trembling on my doorstep. I took it inside, to the jealous hissing of my own cat, my wife ran up some "Kitten Found" posters on her Apple Mac, and then we took the sad little creature to the celebrity vet's in Marylebone. He confirmed that it had fallen four or five floors, presumably off the roof of our house, and kept it in overnight for observation, though it seemed relatively unharmed. "Misty's" distraught owners, having seen a poster, phoned that night. They did indeed live four or five houses up the road from us, on the top floor, and she had presumably escaped out of a window and crawled along the parapet before losing her footing 40ft above our front step. Owners and unscathed cat were reunited the next day.

Since then, I have found a lost dog called Charlie, and returned him to the hysterical neighbours of his owner, who were taking him for a walk in Highgate woods when he ran off. And I've returned a very sick lost cat called Edward to his owners after he'd collapsed in front of me in the street. I'm expecting an elephant to faint in front of me any day now.

Some of you may just regard all this as coincidence, but I reckon there is something more going on. I reckon there is a St Francis of Assisi vibe happening here - in other words, I'm being groomed to be a saint. Well, I'd just like to say to whoever is intent on making me a saint - God, presumably - hold on a minute there, bucko. Not so fast. There are a few things I'd like to sort out first.

See, I'm not your usual candidate for saintliness - a simple oyster fisherman, a dreamy gatherer of twigs or a humble hewer of sponge; no, I'm a modern media lad of the Nineties. So here are some terms and conditions which I'd like to discuss with either you, G, or your homeboy here on earth, the Pope. Rather like the Rugby Union people recognising they've got to ante up the cash, I reckon me helping you to bring the saint game into the late 20th century could benefit us both.

So, point one - beatification: "the formal process by which the title 'Blessed' is granted by the Pope to Roman Catholics of exemplary faith who are considered worthy of public veneration after their deaths". And point two - canonisation: "the culmination after a long process of inquiry whereby a deceased individual is declared a saint."

OK, so first of all, the death thing. This is a deal breaker. If I'm going to be Saint Alexei, I want to be alive to enjoy it. After all, what's the point otherwise? Second, the Roman Catholic thing. Well seeing as you, G, seem to want me to be a saint, you obviously reckon it's not a problem that I'm Jewish - I think that's very sensible of you. Considering people outside the faith for veneration increases your potential target demographic hugely, which must help in your trade war with that other firm, which we might call the Mecca Organisation. Third, the lengthy process of inquiry. Well, why bother with that? Let's just get together for a drink at the Groucho or the Chelsea Arts Club one night, and if we all get on, then let's just go for it. If you really want, maybe I could do some sort of audition - talking in Latin, that sort of stuff.

Which brings us to point three - merchandising: now, on a recent visit to Umbria, I noticed all manner of St Francis of Assisi stuff being sold in the shops - snow domes, tacky medals, propelling pencils - all with the saint's image on them. However, as far as I know, no part of the sale price of the aforementioned articles went either to Mr Assisi or to his estate. A similar situation would be unacceptable to me. What I propose is this - I would receive 23 per cent of the wholesale price of each item which has my trademarked 'Saint Alexei'' logo, plus a substantial advance on projected sales, recoupable from subsequent revenues. I would also undertake to perform miracles solely at a nominated venue - Wembley Conference Centre, perhaps - and I would be prepared to publicise these forthcoming miracles by going on The Big Breakfast, doing phone interviews with Radio 1, etc.

So that's my proposal, G. Fax me. OK? But in the meantime, don't send me any more sick animals, because I won't touch 'em until we've agreed terms.

Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appeal
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
Arts and Entertainment
Strictly finalists Simon Webbe, Caroline Flack, Mark Wright and Frankie Bridge
tvLive: Simon Webbe, Caroline Flack, Mark Wright and Frankie Bridge face-off in the final
Sport
Ched Evans in action for Sheffield United in 2012
footballRonnie Moore says 'he's served his time and the boy wants to play football'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

    £65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

    Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

    £15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

    Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

    £50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

    The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

    £27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

    Day In a Page

    Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

    Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

    'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

    Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

    As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
    The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

    The Interview movie review

    You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
    Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

    How podcasts became mainstream

    People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

    Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

    Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
    Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

    A memorable year for science – if not for mice

    The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
    Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

    Christmas cocktails to make you merry

    Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
    5 best activity trackers

    Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

    Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
    Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

    Paul Scholes column

    It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

    Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
    Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

    Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

    2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture