I am not a one for ‘meme’s as a rule. Not because I don’t like them – lists have always fascinated me. As a child there was a ‘Book of Lists’ that came out to a great fanfare (these things still having some sort of novelty in the ’70s and 80s) and I was glued to the brick sized volume of endlessly useless and often inaccurate facts. However I have that gnawing feeling as I start to compile my own list of favourite albums, children’s books, green vegetables etc etc that I am going to be a lot less interesting than everyone else. So there are just two on my blog.
But this morning I read on the fabulous Diary of a Desperate Exmoor Woman (writer Jane Alexander’s blog) her response to another blogger’s meme, ‘7 things you never knew about me’. It was written a year ago, and I know lots of others have taken this meme on since but Jane had come up with some really original ideas (helped by having interviewed David Byrne and Phil Collins). Having promised in my last post to take opportunities, get writing and risk failure, I have decided to use this as a prompt to get tapping away and expose myself to the derision of my peers (see no. 2).
So here goes:
1. I was once predicted to be the first female prime minister. I was seven, in my first year of junior school and the political commentator with her finger firmly off the pulse (this was the ’70s and Mrs T was already on her inexorable (or execrable) rise to the top) was my teacher, Mrs O’Connell. Looking back this cannot mean anything positive about me at all. I was clearly an utter nightmare to teach.
2. Aged fifteen I fell in love with Keith Chegwin. He didn’t know it of course. I sat glued to Multi-coloured Swap Shop every Saturday morning longing to see in which football ground or park he was freezing his vitals off that day. I watched him exchanging some lucky child’s Tiny Tears for an Etch a Sketch and longed to be there with him instead of Maggie Philbin. When they announced they were to marry I tried to be pleased for them but could only gaze longingly at the Jackie poster on my wall. I can remember the green and blue striped rugby shirt he was wearing even now… As I got a little older and realised he was just 5ft 4 tall (to my 5ft 8) and had got so desperate for alcohol he would down bottles of Listerine mouthwash I felt unable to worship him so ardently. But deep down, I know it should have been me instead of Maggie…
3. I have no idea what colour my hair is. The real colour that is. At present it is L’Oreal Excellence Creme Light Natural Blonde. If you are interested. Which you won’t be.
4. I am (or was) a qualified football referee. I took the exam as part of my Duke of Edinburgh’s award with my friend Sue. We were the only women on the course and came out with the two highest marks. However, knowing the offside rule is not the same as applying it and I refereed just one match. I gave throw-ins to the wrong team, didn’t notice when one team scored a goal and actually lost control completely to the point where I tried to pretend I had sprained my ankle in order to be substituted. It didn’t work. It was hell. Eleven year old boys can be very cruel…
5. I still believe in Father Christmas. I do, I can’t help it. Not the Coca-Cola bushy bearded chap so much as the Raymond Briggs character or a slender Byzantine St Nick in green garb throwing presents though the windows of needy souls. Christianity and I have a problematic relationship largely due to my reluctance to buy into the idea of the established church. However I can translate the birth of Christ into the charitable Nicholas and I cling to idea of the man himself living round the corner from us in a red-brick terraced house just like ours, keeping reindeer in the garden…
6. If I was allowed to take just one album on to a desert island it would be Jesus of Cool by Nick Lowe. The first ‘proper’ album I ever bought and a genuine classic. I love the sound of breaking glass... (no that isn’t number 7), Little Hitler, Marie Provost (an ageing film star lying dead in her flat, nibbled by her pet dachshund – ‘She was a winnerrrrr who became a doggy’s dinnerrrr’…). Love it.
7. I want to be a proper writer. You may have guessed this by now but apparently I don’t say it often enough, so in case you haven’t noticed….
Like Jane I’m not going to tag anyone as I find those prompts to writing rather intimidating but I would love to know at least one new thing about people who read my blog.
Go on, take the challenge….