Start at the bottom: With Anka away, Neil Start prepares for Yuletide with his parents

Monday: Pre-Christmas rush at Goldfish Action Group coincides with my hormone rush. Clare, head of policy, decides to launch pre-emptive drive to stop parents buying goldfish for offspring at Christmas. Mere thought of children round tree makes me weak at knees and tearful. Spent weekend in Mothercare with Anka, Latvian receptionist at GAG, mother-to-be of child fathered by either me or David, our chairman. Tried to persuade her to have DNA test at once, but she headed home to Riga for holiday instead.

Tuesday: Part of hit squad that invades Harrods to check hygiene in display fish tanks in pet department. Clare stopped by doorman because her orange culottes offend store's dress code. And Trinny and Susannah, no doubt, but keep thought to self. Professional campaigner on mission to save poor fish. No time for spite. Go boldly forth to pet department.

Colleagues in orange rubber gloves plunge arms into assorted tanks and pull out gunk that they proclaim to assembled throng of shoppers is fish sewage and evidence of neglect. Just unfurled banner with slogan 'A Fish Is Not Just for Christmas' when accosted by old lady with odd teeth in navy rain hood looking suspiciously like Margaret Thatcher. She gestures at banner and requests top tip to make her Christmas Day salmon steak for one more tasty. Explains daughter disappeared to jungle and son temporarily indisposed. Just getting on to joys of tarragon as seasoning when colleagues butt in to denounce old lady as animal murderer. She has handbag poised by way of response when security arrive and seize her, mistaking her for animal rights activist. Attempt escape in melee, but end up hiding behind Diana and Dodi Memorial with David. "Anka is my Diana,"he begins. Suggest not time or place to have it out as two guards eject us on to Knightsbridge, where Clare is waiting with TV reporters.

Thursday: Small comfort in seeing old picture of me being arrested in goldfish suit under new anti-terrorism laws few weeks back has made various round-up-of-the-year features in papers. Try to ring Anka in Riga to tell her but must have written her number down wrong.

Friday: Have booked last train out of town on Christmas Eve to Budleigh Salterton for Yuletide break with parents. Volunteered to man office over holiday period, but Clare said (a) sexist to talk about manning anything and (b) against union rules. Make last-minute selections from GAG gift catalogue. 101 Top Tips for Cooking Without Killing recipe book for mum.

Goldfish shower radio for dad. And goldfish-flavoured condoms for my Neanderthal flatmate, Vorderman, the Countdown addict.

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