Those of you who know me - or sensibly just follow me from a safe distance via Twitter - will be aware that for the last two weeks I have been a horrid whinge-faced mard-arse; no, really, you're kind to say otherwise, but I fear 'tis true. Every summer I agree to mark 200 hundred A-level scripts, and every summer I sob through bitter tears that I will never, ever do it again. Of course, then the money appears in your bank account and the pain magically goes away; a little like childbirth, I imagine, only with a more flexible pay-off.
Anyway, I've finished the marking, quite unfeasibly a day ahead of schedule, and am back in the land of the living. However, in typical English-teacher fashion, I will be celebrating this evening not by lying on the floor while someone pours a bottle of wine into my mouth (although, God willing, this COULD still happen), but by attending a lovely poetry reading as part of the Oxfam Bookfest.
Manchester poet Mike Garry will be reading from the recently published "God is a Manc" at the Didsbury branch tonight from 7pm; I've not heard him read before but Helen from Didsbury Life says he's great, and I believe pretty much everything she says. The are no other reasons for me going, other than his excellent reputation and the joy of an evening filled with poetry. None whatsoever. Quite why he tweeted me saying there was free wine is, frankly, anyone's guess.