Scalar::Util has dualvar which returns a scalar with both a numeric value and a string value.
In theory, could do:
return dualvar 1, "SomeValue"; # or just a non-0 numeric value
return dualvar 0, "Some error message";
my $result = alsoslick;
process( '' . $result ); # or just $result if non-error result is
log-error( '' . $result );
(Not as clean as Perl6.)
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