Recently I went to the doctor because I had a sore foot. His advice: Lose some weight and get some exercise.
I was thinking about it after as I paid for my visit - which basically involved the sale of a kidney and/or one of my children - and I came to the conclusion my last three visits had each ended with me getting the same advice.
I'm starting to wonder if I am actually seeing a doctor or whether it's just a robot who flits from room to room saying the same thing to each patient all day. Every day.
Anyway. I've finally got the point. To get healthier I need to get some exercise to help lose weight. To do that I'll need some new super duper shoes and, as it turns out, a visit to a special foot bloke to get some orthotics which are basically a mould of your foot but with bits added in to help out where you need them, if that makes sense.
Luckily I have a kidney and three children left after my doctor visit so before you can say "nearly bankrupt and destitute" I am the proud owner of a new pair of exercise shoes and a solid gold pair of orthotics. I'm assuming of course there is gold in them which is why they were expensive.
So. I've taken my new shoes to the foot guy and he's taken a deep breath, plunged down to where my feet ferment with natural goodness and has fitted the mould into my new shoes - before he turns blue.
Luckily he survived and while he's getting his breath back I'm out the door and walking the street, feeling pain free and surprisingly "bouncy" like you do with a new pair of shoes.
There's just one thing. My new shoes are creaking.
It actually sounds like I'm stepping on that old floorboard in the haunted house in the movies. You know what I mean.
Naturally there's a settling-in period and I have been advised to give it a few days and see how they work before seeking remedial action.
So I tough it out and go creaking all over the place. It doesn't get any better.
What makes it worse is I have to walk past a group of girls who always seem to be on the same bench near my work most mornings.
The first day I walked past I heard one of them say to another "Did you hear that?"
On the second and third day it's silent as I approach and even quieter as I walk past but giggles erupt just as I think I've escaped.
Naturally my workmates are a lot more mature, apart from one junior who enquires with a smile whether the creaking is my shoes or my knees.
So something must be done. I creak back to the shoe shop for advice.
It seems talcum powder is the solution. A liberal sprinkling under the orthotic insert will solve all ills. And presumably make the underside of the offending insert as smooth as a baby's bum.
Next day Mrs P drops me off and I head for the Gathered Gaggle of Girls. Nothing. Not a creak to be heard. There's a few stunned faces as I walk on by but I am triumphant as I head for the door of the office.
Just as I'm about to enter Mrs P rings my cellphone. I turn and see her still waiting in the car, waving frantically for me to return.
As I get there she explains she's seen what's happened and I'll need to change my shoes before I go in to work.
Apparently while the creak has gone, it has been replaced by a puff of white powder coming out of my footwear with every step I take.
■ Kevin Page is a teller of tall tales with a firm belief too much serious news gives you frown lines. Feel free to share stories to firstname.lastname@example.org