Alan was inflatable. Everywhere he went people would tell him he was inflatable. Some people would ask if they could top him up. Some kids once let him down for a laugh then filled him full of helium. He had to cling to the top of a lamppost until a tall man was able to get him down and replace the helium with a denser gas.

He finally lost it when his wife took up knitting. ‘Don’t you realise how dangerous that is for me?’ he shouted. She didn’t seem to care.

He now lives alone in Switzerland. The air is good there and his dry cleaning business is thriving.


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