In the first hour I’m awake, I do nothing you would call anything, just read news feeds and drink coffee, smoke a handful of cigarettes and calculate the minutes already bequeathed to the strictures of my life. I feel compelled to do it, acclimatise to the day the way a diver avoids the bends, though I hate it and spend masses of time reviewing the way in which I waste it. I repeat this scene at night, before I can stand to put myself to bed, rueing the natural cycle of renewal as a child laments a parent’s directive.

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