Well, I have to report a damp squib. I went into the police station this afternoon, and a smiley duty officer came to the window and said 'What can I do you for?' Normally a cliché, I thought this was quite funny in the context. 'Attempted murder', I said. He stopped smiling. OK, so I didn't actually say that - that's what I really wanted to say. One blurt from trouble - good title for a thriller. I asked if they still had identity parades, and he told me with a nostalgic look in his eye that they finished a couple of years ago, and they use a database of photos nowadays. So that was that for the challenge that had the potential to push me into Grand Theft Auto territory - or, more likely in Witney, Small Theft Bottle of Sherry territory.
He clearly hadn't had much human contact for a few months, and was keen to chat. 'They were a nightmare, those parades. Imagine you're looking for someone with short blond hair and a scar over his left eye - you've got to find seven people who meet that description. In Witney. Mind you, it's a horrible feeling when they pick you out.' I asked him how he knew. Turns out most of the line-ups mostly consisted of police officers, because they couldn't find enough people who fitted the description. If I was the victim, I definitely wouldn't choose anyone wearing a police uniform - that would create a cycle of confusion no one would get out of.
'Those artists impressions weren't any better', he told me. 'We had one old lady had had burglars. She gave a brilliant description, and the artist drew someone that looked exactly like Sandy from Crossroads. Turned out that's what she'd been watching when she'd been burgled. Never caught the burglar.' As Crossroads finished in 1988, I felt like this wasn't a fresh anecdote.
Sandy from Crossroads. Where is he now?
So that's it. No adventures, but I enjoyed a short chat with a very human and friendly duty officer.