Cor, do you remember the end of last year, when as a nation we all descended into a screeching, flapping panic and were convinced the end of civilisation was upon us, because we had a dim, distant memory of once buying an album on cassette in Woolworth's in 1991, and now we would never be able to do perform that precious action again? When we thought it would be mere hours before the whole concept of "money" would be rendered as dead as a big old papery dodo, and we would be forced to return to a barter economy where our meticulous collection of Wire DVDs and original Alan Moore comics would suddenly only be fit for teeny amounts of fuel and as effective shiny surfaces to reflect the sun and singe the circling vultures? How hilarious was all that hoo-hah, eh? What's that? It's very real, it's here and it's going to get worse, you've already lost your job and you're wasting your last pound in an internet cafe reading this? Oh, er... Um. Awkward.
Screw the credit crunch, I say. I'm going to buy a bloody house and you can't stop me, unless you are one of two things: 1) a bank who is unwilling to lend me enough money to fill a decent-sized suitcase (although only if it's in 50ps - one thing that working in a casino taught me was how laughably small a stack of money £200,000 in notes actually is. You could, if you'll forgive the vulgarity, shove it up your arse and still walk like a general) or 2) a house-seller who is unwilling to let me traipse my outside muck through their corridors, sneer at their wainscotting and then chuck a fiver in their direction and yell "S'all you're getting in the current climate, sonny-jim!" I'll ignore the fact that these are not so much stumbling blocks as bone-crunching-fall monoliths.
Anyway, my father has wailed himself into a coma on hearing this news, and I can't say I really blame him. His analysis that I am a lily-livered sap who would be panicked into buying sunscreen in a monsoon, especially if the salesman was a suave, suspiciously dry, gentleman in a nice coat and a big Audi, is pretty much spot-on. "They love people like you," Papa muttered darkly, before he gently slipped into his semi-permanent slumber. And so far, I have been bamboozled into thinking if we do not make an offer in the next 35 seconds, all available decent housing stock in this quadrant of London will be swept back into the stratosphere on a wave of young urban professionals earning slightly more than me, and I shall be left quivering in fear in a high-rise in Streatham, waiting for the moment when the local feral youth scratch through the paper-thin walls, staple-gun my ears to the floor and mess up my XBox Live rating.
So, as every other facet of my admittedly weak-broth-plain life is now infected with a pulsating lust for square-footage, outside space and APR, I apologise in advance if this blog turns into a long Rory Bremner dinner party sketch without any sign of humour, wit or subtlety. Welcome one and all to my world.