Escalation.

“The fact is, he’s just too bloody stingy to pay for the electricity.”

Short Tony gesticulates with exasperation towards Big A’s dark and forlorn house. Aside from him alone, our corner of the village is ablaze with luminescence, like a Pink Floyd concert without the extra percussionist who wasn’t big, wasn’t clever and spoilt it for the rest of us. Or a pig with huge testicles, or a fat middle-class guitar player. Or a video of lots of commuters walking about, or a gigantic glitter ball that opens during the interminably overrated solo at the end of ‘Comfortably Numb’.

I make a note to add ‘Analogies – for Dummies!’ to my Christmas present list.

He presses a leaflet into my hand. It is from ‘Stop Miserable Ebenezerish Gits’ (SMEG). Strapline: ‘Are you TOO TIGHT to LIGHT?’

‘I spent ages thinking of that,’ he confesses.

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