It just so happens that today is the first Poking An Elderly Relative With A Stick day of the Spring. Now as Grand Old Uncle Stagnant is still refusing to come out from behind the chicken-intriguing shed, we will have no alternative but to use our bespoke antique Elderly-Relative poking stick. The marmalade has been applied to the first seven and 4/16th inches of the stick as tradition demands and we are just waiting for the all-clear from the veterinary surgery before we power up the turbo-hamsters so we can begin.
It is not a pretty sight extracting an elderly gentleman from the rear of an outbuilding. Especially this early in the spring when there is the ever-present danger of an unexpected frost to his nether-regions, but that is something that we are just going to have to deal with, if and when it does happen.
What makes it even more difficult is that Grand Old Uncle Stagnant has managed to manoeuvre himself into a position that makes the vast majority of his inner thighs inaccessible. This will - as you know - make applying the warm butter slightly more problematic than would otherwise be the case.
Of course, we could always try tempting him out with a bevy of the more nubile of this year's crop of hairstylists, but then we will run the risk of getting him over-excited. That could mean having to beat him around the ankles with rolled-up copies of the Little Frigging In The Wold Gleaner until he fully capitulates and his extraction enables him to then slink off to his kennel just behind the azalea beds.
So, this method may not be as quick as displaying the nubile hairstylists in his direction, but it does prevent him from becoming too over-excited and so it is - in the long run - much better for all of us. That is especially true for the more nervous of the nubile hairstylists who will demand several hot baths and a full manicure each before they feel able to put the trauma of a drooling and aroused Grand Old Uncle Stagnant taking himself in hand firmly from their minds.