It’s 3pm on the last Sunday before Christmas Day 2020. Shortly. I’ll be firing up the oven to cook my mater and me a roast beef dinner; a small gesture by her eldest offspring in recognition of her washing/ironing his laundry earlier in the week.

Laundry a task, even in her dotage, Mrs S senior undertakes with the thoroughness of a forensic accountant….. Well a thorough forensic accountant, anyhow. Her process for refreshing clothes ready to wear stretching as far as ironing boxer shorts and socks.

As my boxers are stealthily hidden by jeans, chinos or shorts there’s absolutely no requirement for them to be steam pressed. However, the familial matriarch deems it a necessary conclusion to the laundry process. This, I’m reliably informed, is in an event I am knocked over by a number 38 bus, subsequently resulting in hospitalisation.

Footnote – To clarify, her ‘sharp’ undies edict also extends to my injury from all other bus number, or indeed hit from car, tractor, lorry and rickshaw.

Consequently, rightly or wrongly, I conclude should yours truly ever lay in a hospital bed with multiple fractures post road incident, mater would gain some solace from this misfortune if my undies bore freshly ironed creases…… Although, personally, I deem shreddies with creases as a fashion faux pas.

Post accident, while laid in a hospital mummified in bandages to support my shattered skeleton, if my doctor updated her with “Gary has sustained broken radius, ulna, fibula and five ribs. But on the positive side his underpants creases are in tact.“, I’d venture it’d make seeing her eldest in distress a little bit more bearable.

Don’t get me wrong, I fully appreciate my 80 year old mother freshening yours truly’s laundry, hence my cooking her a Sunday lunch. However, to my mind, steam pressing of undies and socks is an unnecessary act, needlessly elongating the matriarch’s chore.

However, she’s insistent no child of hers, no matter their juncture in the ageing process, will have kecks which haven’t been ironed to within an inch of their lives. Well, that’s if they live at her home, which I’m currently doing until I secure my own fixed abode. My brother Ian and sister Helen, who live in Gateshead and Macclesfield respectively, are blessed with far greater choice of which laundry items receive a press.

Since I commenced residing at Maggie’s, our Ian often boasts of his maverick disregard for mum’s laundry pedantry. Our kid loving to gloat that, should he’ve the poor serendipity of getting knocked over by the number 38 bus, he’d be spared the ignominious hospital episode which’d befall his elder brother.

My bro bragging that as he peered through his mummy-like head bandages, he’d be donning his three day old undies; relieved to be bereft of my sharp boxer short creases capable of putting a nurses eye out. Although, I’m unsure under what circumstances nurses eyes would be that close to my undies…… Unless, I was receiving a bed bath from a very short-sighted health carer.

Anyhow, I need to draw this literary offering to a close. I’ve an oven to fire up, along with potatoes to peel and part boil ready to roast with the top rump of beef.

Enjoy your day……. If you can’t enjoy your day, at least stay safe…… If you can’t enjoy your day or stay safe, if a hospital stay in necessary, I hope you’re spared the indignation of wearing undies with razor sharp creases.