Saturday: the alarm clock rings at 8am. I fully intend to reach out and calmly turn it off, but due to poor visibility and the difficulty in making a snap judgement in the heat of the moment, I accidentally seize a bowl of nuts which I mistake for the alarm clock, and hurl it to the floor. The nuts scatter and bounce out of the bedroom door. I chase them down the stairs, shouting at my wife to keep clear, and stamp on them with quite reasonable force as they skitter suspiciously all over the hallway.
"What on earth are you doing?" says my wife, from upstairs.
"Operational details cannot be divulged to the public," I reply. "But it is possible that the nuts were in the wrong place at the wrong time."
Making my wife breakfast, I burn the toast. It is regrettable. Very regrettable. But other commissioners have surely burnt toast in the past and I will not allow one incident of burned toast to prevent me from bringing about the changes I have set in motion. We have muesli instead. Muesli represents the kind of modern, integrated, high-fibre Metropolitan police force I have been charged with creating.
Later that day, I am putting up a new fence in my garden when my neighbour emerges in a south-easterly direction from his house and complains that I have positioned a fence post eight feet inside the boundary of his garden.
"It may be that this post is simply in the wrong place at the wrong time," I inform him. "However, I have been entrusted with this post and I do not intend to relinquish it."
"But it's in the middle of my bloody garden!" he says.
"I stand by the position I made clear earlier," I say.
He walks away, rotating an index finger in a circular motion on the side of his head.
When I go back inside, I find that one of the kittens has pooed on the kitchen floor, so I rub his nose in it, and he runs away yowling. Then our dog comes in through the cat flat and I realise it is, in fact dog poo. "I feel a very deep and very personal regret," I tell the mother cat. "However, I would like to point out that I retain the full confidence of the Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith."
After lunch, I put up some bookshelves in the spare room. Unfortunately, I put them up perpendicularly, rather than horizontally, so all the books fall off them onto the floor.
"Arguably, I could have done things differently, and then the books would not be on the floor," I say to my wife. "Not a day will go by when I do not think of that." She gives me a strange look.
That evening, I have decided to take my wife to Leicester Square to see Ratatouille. I discover that I have accidentally booked us into a production of Rigoletto at La Scala in Milan. It is regrettable.
"Right," snaps my wife. "I want a divorce. I'm calling a lawyer."
"There is no need to involve outside agencies," I tell her. "I can assure you there will be a full internal inquiry into the matter of the cinema tickets. But I am sure other commissioners have made other mistakes when planning an evening out with their wives, some of them quite serious. I will not allow one incident to prevent me from bringing about the changes to our marriage that I have set in motion. I intend to remain in my post as husband."
She does not reply, and when we get home, she goes into the spare room, kicking books out of the way, and slams the door.
I go into our bedroom, but as I am preparing for bed, I accidentally dislodge my third-place trophy from the police shooting team from its shelf – not one I put up – above the bedside table. It falls onto the alarm clock and smashes it to pieces. This is regrettable.
The alarm clock was simply in the wrong place. And probably telling the wrong time.Reuse content