Funny people aren’t always nice, and they don’t often feel the need, in person, to make you feel the world is a better place than you’d supposed. “David Austin”:http://www.guardian.co.uk/arts/news/story/0,,1647144,00.html did that.
I don’t know whether his cartoons or his company were more cheering and he was also enormously funny. I never saw him regularly after I stopped drinking with the _Spectator_ crowd, though sometimes we would bump into each other at the _Guardian._ This is one of his pictures, bought at a show in 1994. I asked him if I could use it as my Christmas card that year. I wish I’d never had to use it for this.