Living with being a buffoon

As someone who comes from a long line of daydreamers, occasional minor calamities are an occupational hazard.

Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 5:00 pm

Much to the chagrin of Mrs Tapp, I am the world champion shrinker of expensive tops and have burnt out more stainless steel pans than I care to remember.

It is pot luck whether or not the four-year-old goes to school with his hair combed and remembering where I have parked the car never gets any easier. When I really drop the ball, I do it in style; such as inadvertently posting my front door keys in a pillar box or writing off my Fiat Punto on the M60 - the bloke I shunted into was very understanding, especially as he had bought his vehicle just three hours earlier.

All of these pale into insignificance next to the clanger I dropped last week. Typically, I was cutting the post-school pick up fine, which is never conducive to clear thinking, which probably explains why I left my wallet on top of the car while I strapped in the youngest.

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The first time I realised was when I heard it slide off as I approached 60mph on a dual carriageway less than five minutes after I had set off. The sound of a valuable possession flying off your car roof is as unmistakable as it is horrifying - I should know as last week was the second time I had experienced it in a quarter of a century. Due to the fact it was 6.30pm and raining hard, the odds of recovering the wallet were against me and I called it a night after an hour, before getting down to cancelling my bank cards and ordering a new driving licence

Although I did eventually recover the wallet, its contents had long since disappeared. It would be a lie as big as the one plastered on the side of a red bus three-and-a-half years ago if I said I wasn’t annoyed by my buffoonery, but rather than keep it to myself I chose to share my shame. I have long subscribed to the principle that it is better to laugh at yourself in the open than let others mutter behind your back. I also see it as a public service - we live in a world where people tend to project their own achievements. It is important to know there is always somebody dafter.