Frayed collar, worn out cuffs and a mysterious and rather ugly paint stain. It was no good, I really would have to buy a new jacket after having put it off for the last couple of years. But when exactly and, for that matter, how?
I certainly wasn't going to waste an afternoon in a series of high street clothes shops listening to music that nobody can possibly like beneath neon lighting presumably originally designed to guide aircraft in to a safe landing. Waddling in and out of coat hanger-strewn cubicles for hours on end, having my ears battered by Calvin Harris and Rihanna is not my idea of a good time, let me tell you.
What about online shopping, then? It's all the rage apparently. Well, no thanks - those city centre clothes shops might not be to my taste but at least they're not hipster cafes selling seedy bread rolls and avocado smoothies. We should be thankful for small mercies and support them. Well you should; I'll just draw the line at not buying clothes on the internet which, I'm sure you'll agree, is a fair deal.
In the end, as always, I decided procrastination was the most desirable option and, as a consequence, simply stuck my fingers in my ears, closed my eyes and pretended the whole jacket buying necessity thing wasn't really happening. This went on for about a month with my coat literally falling to pieces while I looked the other way disingenuously whistling a medley of Perry Como hits.
And then a miracle. This very afternoon, I was just leaving the pub having performed some task so mundane that I've already forgotten what it was, when the local Cudeca shop hove into view like an oasis in the desert. (For those readers who may be on a brief visit to the coast and therefore perhaps unaware of Cudeca, it's the marvellous Cancer Care Association founded in 1991 by the equally marvellous Joan Hunt). I bounded through the door, took one look at the men's jacket section, spied a cool suede number, tried it on, paid the friendly and jovial women at the counter and bade farewell all within a record-breaking three minutes.
This, my friends, is what clothes shopping should be - no GBH of the tympanum, tasteful lighting, lovely display of wares and great staff to boot.
Even better - not an avocado smoothie in sight.