Just had that Hind on the phone. I did my listening thing while she relived a Very Important Exam In Doctoring with me because she’s worried she might have blown it. Hind, you haven’t. I know this because, as a medical school drop-out, I am an expert.

Then she asked me about my life and, as usual, I had little to report. “Yes, Hind, I am still a spectacular washout.”

So I told her again that two of my ‘Blog posts were going to be in this book.

“I know, Damian. You told me.”

“Oh yeah.”

Ben was in the exam too. He’d been reading your ‘Blog because it referred to him at one point.”

“Oh, yeah?”

“He’s making a ten-part series of Bad Science for the BBC.”


What I need is to master the art of being proud of being an underachiever. “Yes, I once had Great Promise, but then I realised that it’s not all about striving for success. Now I am very spiritual. I’ve learned that I can take pleasure in my friends’ new families and celebrate their triumphs. The burden of ambition has just fallen away from me, leaving me feeling liberated. And spiritual.”

By ‘spiritual’, do you mean ‘bitter, lonely, envious, and unemployable’?

“Ooh, look, that makes an acronym—in, er, French.”

That Ben Goldacre’s bloody not 31.