I requested and paid for a piping hot sandwich and the man said I'll bring it to you and I sat down. I read the paper given away on raining morning corners by the evangelical ponchos who've lately begun unzipping my coat and tucking it under my armpit while saying paper, paper, paper, you will not live without this news. And you get it indoors and it's three-quarter page adverts for slightly larger phones and pictures of professional disgraces with incomprehensible teeth.
The sandwich didn't appear. I put the paper back on the shelf and tilted my head at the man. He asked if I was the man with the sandwich and I wanted to say no, I'm the man without the sandwich, my popping up here with an angled head ought to make that fairly clear, wouldn't you say, but I just said yes. He said he looked everywhere for me. I told him I was starving to death, and he threw four pound coins one by one at my face, screaming well here's your bastard money back you filthy haddock. I couldn't help thinking his response was disproportionate, and was reassured by the next day's free paper, which contained news of his protracted and gloopy end-of-shift kidnapping, opposite a full-page advert for a better kind of water.