Today has a real old fashioned Saturday feel about it. For the first time in ages in the dull, wet, windy season I am not off to a football game on Saturday afternoon. Instead I was dragged off to Satan's own retail outlet, Ikea. But more of that anon.
The big thing I hate about driving at weekend is all the Sunday/weekend drivers. You know the sort, they sit in their spotless little runarounds and daren't ever leave the middle lane (lane 2) of the motorway. It's as if they fear actually moving from lane to lane so just sit there causing a huge tailback and effectively reducing the motorways to two lanes.
Then, on days like this, when there is a bit of rain and spray on the road, on go the fog lights. Why?! What kind of brain fault do these people have that makes them think 'fog light' when they see rain? All it does is refract the light across the windscreens of following vehicles thus causing an immediate danger, they look like brake lights and cause the vehicles behind to suddenly brake.
Then when you do try to pass them they have another brain fault that makes them speed up as you draw level so you end up passing them at 85mph. But as soon as you have passed they retreat back down to 60mph. And, as you pass, you glance left and they are invariably gripping the wheel as if their very life depended on it, their faces are about a foot from the windscreen and contorted with concentration, and they often have driving gloves on. Get the bus you idiots!
So why am I venturing along the M6 on a Saturday with no football to watch? As I said at the start I had to join Mrs B at Ikea. The place truly is evil and I have been given more red cards there by my beloved than in any other shop. The Warrington one is worst of all. I was once yellow carded in the car park there for getting angry when I couldn't find a parking space. Five minutes later we parked and I was so pissed off that I only got into the huge barn of a foyer and Mrs B brandished the red card and sent me back to the car for serious stropping. A blessing really.
But today I behaved and got round without even being tutted at. We got our storage boxes but, as happens in Ikea, the lids for the ones we got were not very good and barely fitted. So we got lids for another type of box that actually fit ours better. Not so clever you Swedish geeks! How can one country produce a monster like Ikea then at the opposite end of the spectrum a writer like Hening Mankell? God only knows.
So here I am now, having left home with Mrs B at the crack of dawn, sat waiting in Manchester for a costume fitting while Mrs B visits parents. Yes a costume fitting. Next week I am working as an extra on my first ever film, Sherlock Holmes, directed by Guy Ritchie and starring Jude Law. It's really exciting because over the last twelve months I have been an extra on a few TV programmes but never a film. And a Hollywood film at that, even if it is being filmed in Manchester.
So that's why I'm not at the football.