Oh, now I feel really bad. At the weekend I was really ill with a non-definable but malignant disease/bug/syndrome, and I text messaged my friend Jen to say "hi/I'm dying" and when she didn't text me back in a few hours, I deleted all her numbers from my mobile phone (house, mobile, other mobile she doesn't use, etc) because I was feeling shit and rejected and I had one of those illnesses that weights you down all weekend and then you magically recover to full health at 6pm on Sunday night (although come to think of it I didn't know that at the time). Now I just emailed Jen to find out if she's scared of clowns and she tells me she lost her phone. I am officially a moody cow.

I'm conducting research on the growing phenomenon of clown-phobia, using the following highly scientific questionnaire:

Are you scared of clowns?
A. yes.
B. no.
C. I'm too ashamed to admit it.
D. only clowns with knives.

So far, I have one A, one D and one unsolicited clown-phobe who never even saw the questionnaire. Personally I'm not scared of clowns at all, I just consider them the least funny thing in the universe (yes, even less funny than Dustin Diamond.)

I really think this could be a chance for a Nobel prize. Or at least an opportunity to watch lots of weird movies with clowns in, like The Greatest Show on Earth and Santa Sangre. Not to mention The Simpsons. But I'm steering well clear of the whole Clown Porn movement, which isn't about real clowns at all, just imposters in fancy dress.

Maybe it's something to do with painting your face on an egg-shell, or having the same name as the greatest fashion designer of all time. I seem to recall that Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore's child is called Coco, although I don't think she's a clown either. And cocoa certainly isn't scary, even when it's bitter or twisted (as in that delicacy the Curly-Wurly).

So if you want to participate in this research project, or know what medication I should be on (am I still ill? am I delirious? am I really at work?), please drop me a line. And if you see a clown with a mobile phone, it's Jen's. Kill it, but use a gun. Remember, clowns have knives.

(On the other hand, if Jen doesn't get her phone back, she'll have to get a new one and I'll have to enter her new number on my phone anyway, so if you are afraid of clowns, don't put yourself at risk. Gwa-ha-ha! Sorry, Jen.)