1/ You find yourself sighing when you get out of bed.

2/ And again when you get to the bus stop.

3/ You take the bus that goes the Other Way just for a change and feel a bit reckless for doing it.

4/ You find yourself watching the students (presumably at this time of the morning on their way home from something) and think about doing another degree.

5/ You notice the bands now playing Ironically at the student union are the ones you queued up for four hours to get tickets for when you were 19

6/ The John Martyn on the iPod is REALLY hitting the spot when the iPod has a hissy fit and dies. Again. You take this as a sign.

7/ You get off the bus and think “Hey, i’m wearing combats and DMs and carrying a rucksack – I wonder if anyone will mistake me for a student” just as the girl who was about to hand you a flyer for a club night glances at you and hands it to the guy behind you.

8/ You get a buzz when your second bus turns up just as you get to the stop.

9/ As you wander through the industrial estate to work, you imagine the foul stench coming from the hedgerow is the badly mutilated corpse of an investigative journalist who got too close to The Truth and you’ll discover it and be on the news and you follow up on the story, drawing the attention of some Mr Big Gang Boss who’ll try to silence you and make it look like a bizarre fencepost accident, but you’ll outsmart him and catch him in the act and you’ll send him to chokey for a stretch and the police will honour you and ask for your help busting crimes in the future and someone in L.A will write a cop show based on your life and you’ll get a fortune in royalties which you’ll spend on charitable good works, booze and loose women, leading to your inevitable downard spiral which will be made into a film on the Hallmark channel, earning you yet more royalties which this time you’ll invest carefully in property and ethical companies, making you millions and meaning you never have to work again, so you dedicate your life to spiritual development and Rockin’ Out, resulting in an album which achieves the never before heard blend of New Age mellowness and hard-edged ball-crunching metal with a folk-jazz-country tinge, capturing the public imagination and leading you to your long coveted career as a professional musician where you achieve success artistically and financially.

10/ You realise the smell is coming from a dead seagull that’s been hit by a lorry. You take this as a sign, too.

11/ You get to your office and realise that the last hour will probably be more interesting than anything in the next eight.

12/ You sigh again.