Children In Need
Here in the UK, we’ve just endured the annual ‘Children In Need’ charity event on BBC television.
You know the sort of thing?
Where lots of filthy-rich celebrities come on and try to extort money from the poor viewers, aided and abetted by heart-wrenching video clips of every possible childhood-related tragedy you could think of.
It’s not that I’m against raising money for charity. Far from it. I have jumped out of perfectly serviceable aircraft to raise money for good causes.
I even ran the London Marathon for children with cancer, raising around £5,000 in the process and knackering my knees for what I suspect will be the rest of my life.
And I have no issues with children either, being a proud father and uncle.
It’s just the way they go about it that really winds me up.
So, in an attempt to let off some ‘literary’ steam and to avoid doing my REAL work of finishing my latest thriller, I have written a tiny magic-realism piece about Children In Need.
The wizened old woman stretched out a bony arm and switched off the radio with a relieved sigh, stretching her tired back for a moment before turning her attention back to her hot stove.
She flicked the tattered red hood away from her lined face before deftly trimming the uncooked pastry from the edges of the pie and rolling it into several balls, about the size of little breadcrumbs.
She threw the first of these across the odd-looking kitchen and watched as her Staffordshire bull terrier leapt into the air and snatched it, his strong jaws snapping shut with all the finality and violence of a gin-trap.
‘Children in need,’ she exclaimed to the dog.
‘Children in need, Wolfie?
In need of precisely what, I ask you?
In need of some manners, maybe.
In need of an education, of a backbone, moral fibre, respect for their elders, where do I stop?
Most of all, Wolfie, they’re children in need of a bath.
Wolfie just licked his lips and smiled.
PS: I am still working on the 4th Ridge Walker adventure thriller and I promise it will be published later this year.
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