If you want to get someone’s back up, first say you are a writer, then say you write humour. (And if you want a full house, add that you are “passionate about writing”, but don’t get me started.) I state up-front that many visitors here will sit granite-faced and resentful throughout my every cursed syllable and fair enough. However, if you read a piece and laugh out loud just once, then I have won. And you, you have lost.

Housekeeping: Obviously, most of this is tailored to a specific time, place and audience and so allowances should be made. It’s also going to be added really slowly, because I never kept the original Word docs. Handy.