I have a confession to make: it’s been a long time since I last went to the dentist. a *long* time. Years. Many of them. Double figures, in fact. So, given that today starts with a visit to the dentist I’m … actually surprised I’m not a whole lot more nervous!

When Rachel and I separated one of the many side-effects was having to cancel our existing family health insurance and set up new, separate accounts. We ended up with a different insurer who, as it happened, threw in a free dental check. They even passed on my details to the dentist (with my permission, of course) so the dentist could get in touch and arrange an initial appointment. In the face of all of this convenience, it would have been an extreme act of self-defeat for me to not finally get myself into the dentist’s chair.

Well, it turns out I must be taking fairly good care of my teeth as, aside from the usual scrape and polish, all I need are a few fairly minor fillings. Best of all, half the price gets knocked off with my shiny new health insurance, so I expect there’s a better than average chance I’ll be back. I spend the rest of the morning getting used to the odd new gaps in my teeth, exposed by the cleaning, and marvelling at the fact that my teeth no longer look like something that might get me cast in a zombie movie.

I meet Rachel for coffee afterwards and hand over the additional papers she needs to sign. It’s been a challenging, albeit swift, road to get to the point where we can sit and have coffee together again, but the reason is simple: we have kids, they need to be protected, and that means we need to remain friends. Or at least something close to it. Afterwards she comes back to the house and helps me move some furniture around. With all of her stuff now gone there are some refreshing new possibilities for arranging my furniture. We don’t move much, but it’s enough to make a huge difference and I start to get a real buzz about my new look home.

Then it’s time for Fridate with the wonderful Seb, who has remained my staunch Fridate companion through all of this. We have a chat about the various emotional ups and downs I’ve traversed this week (Fridate has become something of an unofficial regular therapy session for me) then settle down for our new regular feature: Friday night horror. This week we’re giving the prequel to The Thing another watch. I’ve only seen it once, and Seb has seen it never.

It turns out to be better than I remembered, only let down by some slightly clunky CGI. I find that the tension and paranoia is particularly well handled, and even wonder if the Obligatory Thing Scenes end up as more of a distraction than anything else. I also notice that there are a lot of the same beats in the story as the original film (a sabotaged blood test, a stand-off in the corridor, etc), almost as if they started out writing a remake and then converted it into a prequel.

Next week, one of my all time favourites: The Howling.