Friday, 4 June 2010

A Licence To Kill

Oh God, I hate Fridays. I'm on the phone to DEFRA this morning when The Boss arrives, dumps his briefcase on my desk and opens it. A crumpled shirt and five pairs of obviously dirty Y-fronts fall out. He fishes around for a folder, and then buggers off to do an interview, leaving me staring at skid marks. I have a degree!

Andrew returns after lunch, just in time for surgery. There are the usual collection of total nutters, interspersed with the odd sane person with a really serious problem. I'm disturbed by yet another case where a middle-aged patient has apparently died unnecessarily while an in-patient at the local hospital. From dehydration.

That's the fifth or sixth case in the last three months. Honestly, I'm not at all sure that care is improving since they started making nurses do degrees. I make a mental note to contact the advice agencies and see if they've heard about any other cases, as I'm getting a bit worried about what's going on.

The Boss doesn't seem quite as exercised by death as he does about the ban on docking Boxer dogs' tails. This probably has less to do with Andrew having a secret desire to mutilate dogs, than with the fact that the constituent in favour of it turns out to be a reasonably attractive woman in her late forties.

She flirts outrageously with The Boss, who flirts outrageously back. Before I know it, he's agreed to consider bringing a Private Members Bill to reinstate docking, and she leaves in a presumably-hormonal tizz.

Andrew's still flushed with success when I show Mr Beales in, and greets him like a long-lost friend. Does The Boss have to do that? The usual suspects need no encouragement.

Grinning like an idiot, Mr Beales pulls out a piece of paper, ignores my outstretched hand and passes it to The Boss.

"If you could just sign that, Andrew, I'll be on my way," he says.

Since when does Mr Beales call The Boss Andrew? It doesn't seem to bother anyone but me, though - and The Boss flourishes his biro.

"At least read it first!" I say - sotto voce, or at least, that's what I hope, but Big Ears Beales hears me anyway. He pushes his double-barred paedophile glasses to the end of his nose and peers over them at me. His eyes are cold.

"It's just my shotgun licence application," he says. "Your Boss knows me -"

"Indeed he does," I say, "That was rather my point. Andrew, are you sure you don't want to wait and think about this first?"

The Boss finally notices my expression, which Greg says is the one that makes me look like the Infected  in "28 Days Later," and reacts.

"Ah, Edmund," he says. "Molly's right, you know -"

"Thank God for that," I say, under my breath, but then The Boss continues,

"She's forgotten to type up that reference for the court. Tell you what, she can go and do that now, and I'll sign this while you wait."

Of such incidents are armed serial killers made. I give up.


  1. "Not at all sure that care is improving since they started making nurses do degrees"

    You should not be surprised considering how dumbed down qualifications are these days. Decades of comprehensives and don't hurt the feelings of the little darlings by failing them at anything have worked a treat.

  2. I laughed and laughed. I know I shouldn't have, but I did. It's so awful.

    By the way, I nominated you for a meme back at my place.

  3. Thank you very much. But what IS a meme?! Is it a good thing? Greg says it's what The Boss says when he looks approvingly in the mirror...