I was born in the snow, behind the woodshed that my pet cat, Graham, called home. He wasn’t my pet cat at this time, he belonged to the local butcher, Brian the Majestic, a man who cultivated the finest lamb shanks this side of Penybont-Fawr. I didn’t chose to be born behind this god forsaken abode of chopped trees, but life gave me lemons, and from these lemons I put together a lemon meringue that not even Carol the Baker could dream of. My first childhood memory stems from a game of kickball in the village, when I was but a 6 year old tyke. The 2 streets of the hamlet, Rhonyddongyd and Francis Road, were about to embark on their annual attempt to inject some vitality in their lives, lives that until this point had consisted mostly of lamb shanks, lemon meringues and disappointment. Not with the shanks mind you, Brian the Majestic would not stand for it. Besides, he was the referee, so any disparaging remarks toward his shanks would have been as well received as Belinda Carlisle. Anywhere. This wasn’t just a game of football my friends. This was a terrible game of football. I sauntered up to the Majestic, motioned for him to come to my level. He obliged. I cupped my cold, frigid hands around his ear, and whispered;

‘Your shanks Mr Majestic? Mediocre’.

He exploded with a rage normally reserved for those moments of frustration at dead batteries in a television remote. He promised a curse upon me, a curse upon my house, a curse upon my future generations and rather bizarrely a curse upon my penmanship. This curse, came in the name of Graham, an overweight Peterbald cat that looked more like a drawing that someone had abandoned than a living, breathing beast. My life, as I wanted it to be, was over. What was once a 6 year old tyke who wasn’t too fond of lamb shanks, became a balding, overweight Peterbald cat. I am Graham.

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