Tuesday, October 28, 2008

6 Random Things About Myself

I got tagged by both Gyppo Byard and Kevin Musgrove, for which I feel very honoured. At first it worried me in the same way that chain letters worry me, but it seems that it's just harmless fun. I’ve got to “reveal six random things about myself”. In what sense of the word “random” they are random if they’ve been chosen by me, I am unsure, but here goes:

1: I painted my toenails scarlet

(Or: I painted my toenails, Scarlet... if you’re reading this). This follows on from one of Gyppo’s random facts. I did it at a party, for a laugh, but it was just a few days before I was due to travel to India for a friend’s wedding. The friend was at the party and said “Please, in the name of Lord Krishna, remove that nail varnish; many people will see your feet at my wedding and they will think that in England I associate with eunuchs”.

2: I got a Blue Peter badge

The circumstances surrounding its acquisition are too painful to recall, but I was in my mid-30s at the time and by then had come to sufficient understanding that the camera doesn’t love me, and vice versa. But I couldn't get out of it.

3: My dad used to write articles for Mayfair

A discussion at Gorilla Bananas’ place reminded me of this. They were about steam trains, racing cars, weapons and stuff like that, in the days when “men’s magazines” were supposed to of general interest to men. He had a stack of them in his study, though I suspect that I was the only one that dog-eared them. (I still don’t know if he ever knew that I knew about them!)

4: I’ve had Electroconvulsive Therapy

I feel a bit awkward saying this, not because I'm embarrassed (though I probably should be) but because it might come across as some bizarre attempt at one-up-man-ship after MC Ward and Mrs Pouncer's courageous revelations about their lives. But if I can get a laugh out of it - and the cure is surely more gag-worthy than the malady - then that's justification enough for me. Actually it was one the things instrumental in turning my life around. (Don’t try it at home though, kids.)

5: The Most Famous People I’ve seen are:

Denis Norden (in a shop); Alexei Sayle (walking down a street); Ben Elton (in a bar); Queen Mum (she visited a summer camp place where I was); Derek Taylor, the Beatles publicity manager (I knew his son); snooker player Steve Davis (standing next to him at a urinal - I wanted to look over and see if all the wealth, fame and adulation of the nation's filing clerks had made his penis permenantly engorged, but I didn't have the nerve). Sad to say I exchanged precisely zero words with each of them.

6: 1984

I was a nervous and suggestible teenager and was convinced that the world would end in 1984. This wasn’t just because of Orwell’s novel but also because when on a skool trip to the London Planetarium an incautious boffin said something about all the planets getting in line at a moment during that year. I became convinced that nuclear warfare would somehow also be a feature of this year and therefore planned which university to attend based on being directly under a bomb (dieing quickly rather than of protracted radiation sickness). This took me to Sheffield, which, as it had no industry left to speak of by the time I got there, would actually have been a really stupid target, unless the Ruskies disliked Arthur Scargill as much as Thatcher did.

Ooerr, that was a bit scary. I believe that I’m required to reiterate the tag rules, so here they are: Link to the person who tagged you. Post the rules on your blog. Write 6 random things about yourself. Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them. Let each person you have tagged know by leaving a comment on their blog. Let the tagger know when your entry is posted. The 6 people I nominate are Can Bass 1, Daphne Wayne-Bough, The Dotterel, Ellis Nadler, Barry Teeth and Andy from Csíkszereda Musings.


Andy said...

Sheffield was definitely on the list. The Russians would have seen Threads and bowed to the inevitability of it all.

Actually Threads can be one of my 6.

Ms Scarlet said...

Yes, Gadj, you didn't have to say it twice (?) . . . I paint my toenails too.
BTW - audible gasp of respect in response to the Blue Peter badge!

Ms Scarlet said...



Mrs Pouncer said...

Gadji, I used to merely adore you, but now worship would not be too strong a word. Your six things manage to be tres amusant, brave and touching. When Scarly suggested it, I thought it was vulgar, vain and boastful and didn't want to join in, but now I want to make lists all the time.

Did you know that Scarlet has ginger hair?

Ms Scarlet said...



Gorilla Bananas said...

So the electric shocks helped then? Very interesting. I thought that particular treatment for people off their nut had gone out of fashion. Had I seen Derek Taylor I would have said: "I wish you hadn't asked Al Capp to forgive you".

Gadjo Dilo said...

Welcome, Andy, Yes, Sheffield would probably have had to be liquidated first, just like "lesser" socialist factions were targeted by the Soviets during the Spanish Civil War. (Or something like that).

Hi Scarlet, I only painted mine that one time, and I'm, pretty sure that I lost the Blue Peter badge :-( There's nothing wrong with being ginger, just as long as you're not Chris Evans. (You're not, are you?)

Mrs Pouncer, I don't know what to say! Please don't get too carried away though, I picked on these exceptional events for my list rather than than mundane ones (it's amazing what a shine you can give a pile of shit, isn't it - it buffs up nicely if you keep polishing).

Mr Bananas, fashions come and fashions go, but sticking 225 volts through somebody's bonce - yep, 225, I counted 'em in and I counted 'em out again - will always be worth a go. (Why did Derek Taylor ask Al Capp to forgive him? I'm intrigued.)

(I feel I may have given you "too much information", as the Americans say. But as I said in nr. 4, my aim was mainly to amuse: I didn't really want to see Steve Davis's cock, and I didn't really still believe at university-going age that the world would end in 1984. I'm happy though to do my bit to de-stigmatise outlandish psychiatric techniques, Mayfair, gingerness and toenail painting.)

Ms Scarlet said...


There is far more stigma attached to being ginger than ECT, Gadj. But I'm NOT ginger so I wouldn't really know.

Kevin Musgrove said...

I'm suitably impressed by anyone whose dad wrote non-naughty articles for Mayfair. Them were the days when ladies' parts were interspersed with stories of Historical Import and fiendishly-detailed paintings of steam engines.

I'd forgotten that bit about the conjunction of planets. I wasn't paying attention: I was busy ineffectually chasing Scotswomen at the time.

Gadjo Dilo said...

Young Scarlet, thank you, and you're right, gingerness is indeed the last remaining taboo in our society. (Though I reckon ECT could be tried as a cure for it - we must never call a halt on scientific inquiry).

Kev, Scotswomen are definitely worth chasing, in my opinion, whether one succeeds or not. The Planetarium boffin was irresponsible because he thought it was amusing to say that when the planets get in line nobody really knows for sure what would happen. I was probably the exception - I'm sure most kids thought this was great, and it make them lifelong fans of The Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Blake's Seven!

Barry Teeth, Beet Poet said...

Ah, now I get it.

Who is that ginger-haired foxstrel up there?

Mrs Pouncer said...

Barry Teeth!!!!!!!!! Hooray! I can't tell you how much I've longed for you to unleash your East Anglian guy-ropes and join - however fleetingly - our cheerful milieu.
Gadj! It's Barry! Barry Teeth!!
And Barry: don't be misled by Scarlet and her ginger hair. She's a morph, you know.

Ms Scarlet said...

Don't you be misled by Clara Pouncer, Mr Teeth, she lives in a flat in Reading High Street, above the chippy!

Hah! Thrice Hah!


Mrs Pouncer said...

Dear Ginger-Blue, there is NO SUCH PLACE as Reading High Street - ask Boyo, Gyppo or Wendy (we all live within stoning distance of each other). There is Broad Street, there is Friar Street, London Street, Duke Street, Bridge Street, Gun Street, Minster Street, West Street but NO High Street. And as for chippies! Well! Reading is far too sophisticated now. Anything that's not raw fish is halal. That's the sort of catering we go in for. Tough on me, of course, when all I want is a bowl of kneidlach.

M C Ward said...

Fascinating stuff, GD. Mayfair was a personal favourite of mine on the nudey mag black market at school.

Ms Scarlet said...

I'm not responding Clara.... this is me not responding...

Can Bass 1 said...

If it's of any interest to you all, the Head Virger is ginger. Fine fellow, mind - in spite of everything.

Kevin Musgrove said...

He's done very well for himself. I remember when he was in the Beezer.

Ms Scarlet said...



Anonymous said...

In observer ! :}

I have the sensation to be in a school playground !!!

Amused :)

Gadjo Dilo said...

Ladies, ladies, please - there's nothing wrong with being ginger; there always has been and always will be a proportion of the population who are ginger, and we really have to just accept it. But if it's any comfort, Scarlet, you know what they say: "no matter how ginger you are, there's always somebody gingerer than you"!

Welcome, Barry. The ginger-haired (allegedly) "foxstrel" is Miss Scarlet, who claims to be a young lady telly-addict from South London. The other one claims to be a aristocratic middle-aged matron from a Reading chip-shop with 6 kids and no caesarian scars. But, frankly, they could be anybody. That's the wonder of The Internet, I suppose.

Thanks, MC. The girls in Mayfair looked so natural and at ease (at least they were in the 70s); call me an old hippy, but I think that's the only way to present naked tottie.

Dear Mr Can Bass, you have a "virger"? (Shouldn't it be "verger"?) Like the guy in Dad's Army?? The quaintness of the C of E never fails to delight, and it's willingness to employ gingernuts is laudable.

Is that some kind of Beezer parody, Kevin? I wish I could read the tiny print but my eyesight was ruined some time ago!

Monsieur Crabtree, quite; a girl's school playground, I suppose you mean ;-)

Ms Scarlet said...

I have referred to you in my latest post Mr Gadj....
That it should come to this, sniff...

Anonymous said...

Gadjo ,
Oui , yes ,este doar că ;)

Unknown said...

sorry mate, i don't do the tag thing. liked the moldavian cow joke.