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To accept the invitation, I had to accept the fact that my rival would also be there.

The most surprising thing was the fact that everyone was invited except Tom.


He was the newest addition to our group, having joined only recently. He taught subtraction and addition, and lived in the addition at the back of the school where he worked.


He was also updating the first edition of his book.


I asked his advice on what to do.


‘I advise you to take out life insurance!’ he said.


Feeling insecure would affect my ability to enjoy the celebrations. I could affect indifference but my friends would know what I really felt.

The effect of his advice, however, was that I felt reassured.


But when the day arrived and we were waiting for the speeches, the air in the hall seemed full of anticipation.

Then came the surprise. No one had expected Enid’s father to announce that his new son-in-law, Harry, would become the heir to his business empire.


The allusion to Henry V was clear in his exclamation, ‘God for Harry, Enid and their family!’

The guests upheld the illusion that they were pleased with the announcement but some had misgivings.


‘My goodness! That was a turn up for the books!’ Peter said aloud.

He received several admonishing glances as though no one was allowed to speak their mind.


Later, I chatted to Enid and told her she looked wonderful as she walked up to the altar.

She thanked me and said she had needed to alter her dress to make it fit comfortably.


She insisted I dance with her and I insisted on a fast tune – every alternate record was slow.

After that, I didn’t want to sit down, so standing at the bar was my only alternative.


I watched the baby throwing cake from his perch in the high chair; how wonderful just to enjoy oneself and be completely amoral.

The waiter, on the other hand, chose the immoral option of stealing the guests’ purses from the bags left on the backs of their chairs.


I couldn’t help but notice that his aural hygiene left something to be desired!

As I quietly asked the barman to call the police and arrest the man with the dirty ears, I promised myself I would make sure the story of this day would become an oral history, passed down from one generation to the next.

A words and the disastrous wedding

Try to remember the story of the disastrous wedding to help you recall the correct use of these commonly confused words.

accept: to respond positively or to tolerate


except: apart from



addition: an additional person or thing; a calculation; or an annex





edition: a specific printed version



advice: a recommendation of what to do (noun)

advise: to give a recommendation (verb)  



affect: to influence physically or emotionally or to put on a show (verb)



effect: the result (noun)



air: the gases that form the atmosphere



heir: successor





allusion: an oblique reference



illusion: a false or deceptive impression




aloud: in a spoken voice


allowed: having permission to




altar: the raised structure at the front of a church


alter: to change



alternate: every other one



alternative: another choice



amoral: having no moral standards



immoral: going against moral standards





aural: to do with the ears or with hearing


oral: to do with the mouth or with speech