In June '85 I purchased a rather dubious-looking love potion sachet at a fairground on Clapham Common, and on getting home, secretly administered a couple of spoonfuls into my dad's coffee. It looked like itching powder, and how he necked his beverage back I'll never know.
Within two days, dad was at the doctor's. A urine infection apparently. Of course, I never told him about the potion. Hell, I was just a 13-year-old kid trying to save his parents' marriage. How he was supposed to get amorous with mum in a one-bedroomed flat, well, I hadn't quite worked that one out. And I'm not sure what I expected the potion to do? Would dad's shirt start ripping like the Hulk? Would he start roaring and beating his chest? Would we all have to flee the flat? Apparently so, according to the fairground worker who'd sold it to me.
I wasn't entirely sure that the potion had been responsible for dad's infection either, so a fortnight later, with dad having recovered, I slipped another couple of spoonfuls into another coffee. Another visit to the GP followed shortly after, and following that, bereft of ideas, I finally accepted that if my parents' marriage was to be saved, it wasn't going to be by me.