At last I have a diagnosis for a problem which has caused me much fear, as well as acute embarrassment over many, many years.
Let me explain.
While I am in my workroom, BBC Radio 4 forms the soundtrack to my day. I wouldn't go so far as to say I'm addicted, but I have to have it on the radio in the workroom AND the kitchen, just in case I miss something important on my way to make a cup of tea. If I am upstairs in the 'toy shop hobby room' then I have it on the radio in there too.
Similarly, in the garden, or in the car.
Fellow Radio 4 aficionados will empathise immediately. I meet them all the time in the most unlikely places. A casual mention of Ed Reardon's week, or the Afternoon Play works like a masonic handshake, producing knowing nods and leading the way into a sotto voce conversation about what's happening in The Archers, or the latest novel on Book of the Week.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Radio 4, or think it is for fuddy-duddies I suggest you give it a try. You can listen to it via the internet by logging on to
From there you can take your pick of all manner of programmes, from current affairs to drama,
comedy to gardening tips, factual to history......the list is long and completely fascinating.
There is a very interesting medical programme which tells you about ailments you never thought you had, but it wasn't this which provided my diagnosis.
No, it was a science programme with the worrying title, Am I Normal?
Always willing to push back the boundaries of my ignorance, I listened more carefully and discovered, over the course of the following 30 minutes, that I suffer from an acute case of a condition known as dyscalculia.
Sadly there is no known cure.
I have always suspected that I may have this, but it is an embarrassing condition and not one which I would care to discuss in polite company.
I suspect there's probably a dyscalculia support group on the internet. If not, then I may have to start one.
I'm going to have a lie down now to consider the implications............