I had a most hectic night and seem to have caught a cold.
I got wet last night though it wasn't the rain. I got soaked by champagne. There were several parties going on at the pub including a group still celebrating Chelsea's victory over Munich. I expect I'll be OK this evening, so no need to send a Get Well cards as I'm sure I'll be up and running in no time at all.
Anyone, there's a champagne reception tonight on behalf of Age Concern so I'll need to be there.
"Care of the Elderly" is, therefore, my Theme of the Day.
The plight of our pensioners is something I have spoken about many times in the constituency and in the House and the subject will form a key element in the run up to my re-election. I worry about our old people - although there are some exceptions.
One exception is that old lady who keeps sitting in my reserved seat on the 8.15. She tried it on again last Monday. Fortunately someone offered her a seat a few rows further along but it was what she left on the seat that worried me. The Financial Times is not something you associate with old ladies and I did wonder, briefly, about her mental health. Pensioners should be reading The Oldie as light entertainment and War and Peace just to pass the time.
Anyway, between phone calls I had just started to scan the front page of her FT when something fell out. It was a list of horses racing at Wolverhampton. One of them, "Rampant" was ringed in red biro and was running in the 3.30. I immediately phoned Anthea (my excellent PA) and she put a tenner on it for me. It came in at ten to one, hence my visit to the pub last night.
And that's why my other political theme for today is "Entrepreneurship" so we'll combine them into one to save time - "Entrepreneurship and the Elderly".
Do you recall me talking about entrepreneurship during the last election? It'll form a main plank in my re-election campaign.
I also mentioned entrepreneurship to Vince the other day, demanding the Government do more to encourage people to recognise business opportunities, to create the entrepreneurship to follow them up and to build the necessary character to take the risk - just what I had done by backing that horse.
In my case, the opportunity was in picking up that old ladies list, the entrepreneurship came from deciding to bet on "Rampant" and the risk was in borrowing Anthea's ten quid. Vince should use it as a case study.
Today's mixed political theme will also help explain the deep philosophical thinking behind my career in politics and so I will use an example from my studies of elderly people - in particular, the example of the one who persists in taking my reserved seat on the train.
Let us examine her other faults in detail.
I suppose she's an opportunist in her old fashioned way.
But she fails at the first hurdle by looking so nervous when I approach that she vacates my seat and moves elsewhere. An opportunist must never be overcome by fear.
I suppose she also demonstrates a degree of expertise and entrepreneurship in that she had selected that athletic stallion "Rampant" amongst a long list of obvious donkeys. But again she made a mistake. She allowed someone to steal her intellectual property.
Finally, she did not possess enough strength of character. Rather than persevering by returning to recover her copy of the FT she gave up and did not pursue her earlier decision about who was going to win the 3.30.
Since yesterday, I have been trying to find out who she is and who she votes for - a single vote can sometimes make all the difference. Anthea discovered her name is Mrs Delloitte. That explained everything. French, you see. So is it any wonder. The French are useless at business. As George Bush once said, the French haven't even got a word for entrepreneur.
So, anyway, back to the elderly. I'm not embarrassed to be seen with them. In fact there was a big crowd of them in the pub last night celebrating something or other.
It was around about closing time that the geriatric birthday party really got very disorderly and started ordering bottles of champagne. Co-incidentally one of them had also backed a winner that afternoon and this, I heard, was the cause of their loud celebrations. So, I pushed my way into the crowd and announced my own successful winning of £100.
That was when the old lady at the centre of attention came forward, shouting that she recognised me - it was probably yesterday's TV appearance. But then she became extremely rude and said that a hundred quid was pathetic and that she had put five hundred quid on "Rampant" and had made five grand. That was when she poured the bottle of champagne over me.
So my message today is that we need to continue with our policy of austerity. Anyone with five hundred quid to risk on a horse has too much money already. Anyway she just struck lucky.