THE dearly beloved reckons he's saved me from, at worst, stoning followed by ritual disembowelment and, at least, having excrement pushed through the letterbox.
My heinous crime? To poke fun at the village football team. Not that I thought I was making fun of anyone or anything - I just thought I was having a joke. But that's the story of my life - upsetting people because I can't resist adding what I think is a witty comment. Unfortunately, if they don't know me very well, they don't always agree. It's a family thing. We're all rude to each other - it's our way of showing affection.
I once had a comment on a school report that said, "She suffers from a misplaced sense of humour." I was proud of that.
Back to the football club. It all began because the newspaper I work for carried an interview with one of the club officials. He's a lovely guy and it was a lovely, well-written piece by our feature writer. So far, so good.
However, in the words of Vic Reeves, I wouldn't let it lie.
I cobbled together a spoof front page, using pictures of the football official. I intended to take it the pub to show everyone. Dearly beloved started reading it.
"You can't say that! They'll kill you."
"Do you want to become the village leper?"
"They won't think it's funny. Not at all."
And so on and so on.
So the front page is still here on the table in front of me. It all seemed so very innocent to me but I'll let you judge for yourself. Here follows a shortened and edited version. Some names have been changed to protect the terminally touchy.
Headline: BILLIONAIRE RUSSIAN IN BID FOR NOPLACE AFC
FOOTBALL club official Mr X has been keeping tight-lipped about his plans to sell Noplace AFC to a billionaire Russian.
Mr X has the controlling interest in Noplace AFC. He owns 95 per cent of the shares with the final five per cent in the hands of a village pub consortium. The business has been valued at a whopping £56.53.
"I can't say too much at the moment as I don't want to jeopardise negotiations," said Mr X.
"However, let's just say that this Russian already has an interest in a Premier football club and is looking to increase his portfolio.
"His club has recently sold one of the best players in the world to Barcelona and the roubles are burning a hole in his pocket.
"I can't tell you who he is but his first name begins ROMA and his last name begins ABRAMOV.
"I don't think anyone will guess who it is."
Although Noplace AFC were relegated this season, the players are looking forward to starting the new campaign against high-flying opposition, including Little Piddletown 5ths and Big Puddletown Reserves.
Mr X hopes that a cash injection from the mystery benefactor will enable the club to claw its way back up through the leagues. He has set his sights on reaching the Little Piddletown and District Intermediate League by 2037.
Noplace AFC has a proud and glorious history and has come a long way from its days playing on a field behind the village pub.
"You used to have to shoo off the cows and roll off the drunks before playing, " he said.
There was a spell playing at a pitch to the north of the village where they also had to shoo off the cows and roll off the drunks.
Now the team plays in much grander surroundings at South End, famous throughout the footballing world as The Incredible Sloping Pitch .
"I must admit we still have a cow and drunks problem - but only in the pub after the games," said Mr X.
He gave no hint of when the sale was likely to go ahead. All he would say was: "This time next year, Rodney, we'll be millionaires."