Why is it, whenever a man gets a cold, whether he moans or not, the level of sympathy from most women is of the "oh, man-flu, huh!" sort? I came down with a real stinker of a cold on Monday halfway through the show I was doing at Billericay. On the Tuesday and Wednesday I really did feel like death warmed up, and did I moan extensively? I did not. What comments did I get from most of my female friends? "Oh, man-flu, huh! You wuss!" etc. Now sticking the boot on the other foot, a friend of mine (female) was moaning on Facebook about how bad her cold was, how ill she felt etc., and I was very tempted to say "next you'll be telling me you're talking absolute rubbish and have an inability to park a car in a limited space, then you'll know you have full blown bird 'flu..." But being the stunningly restrained gentleman that I am , I kept that all to myself.
Now,where was I? Oh yes, Wimbledon. The last time I had been in Wimbledon for any length of time was back in the early 90's when I spent a couple of Christmas' working on a Christian Radio Station there called "Radio Cracker". Now, as most of you know I am the most heathen, un-Godly barbarian you could possibly meet and was only working there to get some radio experience. It was mostly good fun, but I found the station's rules on what you could or couldn't play somewhat limiting, but it was always fun seeing what you could get away with. So first night on air I played some Led Zeppelin - that immediately disappeared out of the station's music library, so then I tried Billy Bragg's "Sexuality" - I actually managed to play that twice on different shows until one of the station manager's read the lyrics - so that vanished from the music library. My greatest coup de grace though was playing a song called "Satellite" by American band The Hooters on nearly all of my shows, even though it satirises TV evangelists in America and the lyrics aren't even that subtle! But I digress...
I was invited to appear down at Wimbledon Chase School by Angela Dumont, one of the teachers there. She had heard about me as her daughter is a pupil at St Cecillia's Primary in Sutton where I visit quite regularly. Her daughter had apparently given me a glowing report to her mother, and hence I got this particular booking. Wimbledon Chase is a pretty big school and is about to get even bigger. But despite it's size it is warm, welcoming and the teachers are all delightful. I was to do the show in the big school hall which has a high almost vaulted ceiling, and wonderfully dark wood panelled walls. The group of children numbered just under 60 and were all Year 6's. They were bright, sparky and ready to learn and laugh in equal measure which always makes my life easier. Lunch was taken in a packed staff room and consisted of delicious sweet and sour chicken. For the afternoon we had even more fun, loads of laughter and a brilliant jousting tournament which a very competent ladies team won by a mile! This now makes the year long score:
GENTLEMEN 4 - 3 LADIES
In the words of Barry Davies "interesting! Very interesting!" I drove back to Somerset and a very cold flat, but soon had the heating on and felt a lot better. I cooked a pad Thai dinner and suddenly life seemed very nice indeed.
Next week I am in Hereford on Tuesday during the day and then will be back at Barrington on that evening for the National Trust Annual Pub Quiz. And as for the exciting BBC news I mentioned in a recent blog entry.... well on November 19th I will be appearing down at Leeds Castle as part of BBC1's coverage of their annual Children in Need Appeal, which will hopefully involve some parts of that show being broadcast nationwide. Keep an eye out for me!