My Lord, this is the case for the defence.
Firstly, it is a truth almost universally acknowledged that some Parkinson’s medications cause, as an unfortunate side-effect, a reduction in impulse control. This can lead to excessive spending or gambling; or to over-eating; or to a greatly increased sex-drive even, I am told, in term-time! I know, beggars belief, doesn’t it.
My colleague’s lovely neighbour, BTMan – who was the first person with PD I met who was neither mad nor dead nor both – explained this to me, going on to assert that therefore if he was found at the bookies with one hand round a blonde and the other round a pie, he could not be held to blame. Can I please ask your Lordship to take this into consideration?
Am I actually on this medication? Well no, but that is surely a technicality.
Secondly, my journey up to Hammersmith Hospital had been a difficult one, so I wasn’t thinking clearly. The first station I went to was evacuated. And then the Central Line was part suspended. And then the bus was diverted. And then I got lost walking from East Acton. All went smoothly at the hospital, though; I thought of seven Nigels in the MRI scanner and wait to hear if I’m accepted on the drug trial. But then, coming home, the Central Line was still part suspended and so I jumped on a bus which was going roughly in my direction and it crawled along in the rush hour traffic and when I got out at Oxford Circus, hoping for the Victoria line, the gates to the station were closed and there was already a sizeable angry mob gathering with pitch-forks and lighted torches. So I set off to walk to another station. And so it happened that I walked past British Home Stores and saw that they were having a sale!
My Lord, I do freely admit to a love of British Home Stores. I believe one can get treatment for this but I am rather treated out at the moment.
Now, Your Lordship may not have noticed this but I have lost some weight recently. ActorLaddie is a very good cook – his soups are famous in fact – and middle-aged spread had been creeping up on me. So, through a combination of eating a bit less and exercising a bit more, I was on track for reaching my target weight in time for my niece’s wedding in July. Then I was diagnosed and took to the sofa with a box set of Miranda and no appetite. Hence, I am set to top the Christmas best-seller market with the niftily titled “I can make you thin – get Parkinson’s and you will reach your target weight without even trying.”
As a result, my clothes are – whisper this quietly – too big. Your Lordship would be frankly shocked at the downright dirty looks the ladies in the Oxfam shop gave me when I swanned in with three bin bags of clothes, saying airily “these are falling off me”. Mwa ha ha.
And so it was, my Lord, that a combination of these events led to the completely unplanned purchase of a rather expensive frock which, as it turned out, was not in the sale. I plead guilty and offer the above as mitigating factors in my defence.
And if you find me guilty, can I ask for these five other frocks to be taken into consideration?