Neil Gaiman is a national treasure, and should be kept safely in a box somewhere, where he can emerge periodically to offer us more of his wonderfully imaginative writing. I would advise you to go out RIGHT NOW, even if it's the middle of the night, and buy up his entire collection of works. Twice, just to make sure. Then, do not eat and sleep until you have read every last word. Your life will be all the better for it, I promise you (apart from the bit about dropping dead through starvation and exhaustion, but hey, nobody's perfect).
For the full scenic tour of the art of the short story, I thoroughly recommend Smoke and Mirrors. It was the second story in this collection, "Chivalry", in which an old lady finds the Holy Grail in a charity shop; and another in which a character not unlike Jonathan Ross is complicit in the mysterious disapperance of an eminent biologist during a circus performance, that sent me on a chain of thought that ended with this here short story what I wrote in which the end of the world is accidentally brought about by B-List celebrities. It is called...
The end of the world will be televised. The viewing figures, however, will be shocking.
“And now on BBC1 a change of programming. Instead of the episode of EastEnders as advertised in most TV listing publications, we shall now be bringing you live coverage from the front line at the Battle of Megiddo, where we join our chief news correspondant Kate Adie embedded with the forces of good in their battle against the armies of darkness. Then at nine-thirty, classic comedy with Only Fools and Horses.”
"The end of the world. He’d give them Armageddon alright. Armageddon with drapes, cushions and Medium Density Fibreboard. Andy had better get ready with his nailgun - somebody was going to get crucified."
Clicky coo: “Excuse me - is this the right place for the end of the world?”
Mr Gaiman has nothing to worry about.
I've been dragged, kicking and screaming into a popularity contest by Zoe My-Boyfriend-Is-A-Twat, where I am to face off - mano-a-womano - with the rather wonderful Greenfairy. All I can say on the subject is this: Vote for me. ME! ME! ME! I'm brilliant and skill, and GF smells of poop. Free beer, money and sex for every vote! Or just vote for her, even. I don't care. Much. Honestly.
* Free beer, money and sex offer open only to residents of Brazzaville, Republic of Congo, and closes October 19th 1968.
Still plenty of time to vote for painful genital torture for Phil Collins. Hint, and indeed, hint.