Back to Blighty

Ian Wright's autobiography

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’m writing this blog today (a Tues) as I was in Valencia last week and only came back late last night and even though I am dedicated to this blog, even I couldn’t be bothered to type it up last night.

The break away was good, nothing of much note happened, although an older Spanish lady did approach me on the beach and basically said, ‘I’d caught all of the sun and I’d not left any for anyone else’. I presume she was referring to the fact that I am black. It was an odd exchange, I say exchange but I never said anything as she said all this in Spanish and I don’t speak Spanish, so ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ had to translate it to me after the lady had gone. I feel I must say at this stage that, I don’t think the lady was being racist, as she was saying it all with a smile on her face but I do think it is a little odd to go up to a complete stranger and say something like that. Let’s just put it down to cultural differences.

Also whilst I was away Amy Winehouse died, which felt kind of weird. I was trying to work out why it weirded me out so much and the conclusion I came up with was that being away from home meant that I was away from all my usual sources of information and opinion. And without these, it was left to me to formulate my own thoughts on the matter. It’s a bit like when I’m in the pub watching football and they don’t have the commentary on. Not to make light on a sad situation but I don’t think it helped that I was on the toilet when I heard the news (apologies if that is too much info). All I heard was ‘HWOPJ’ scream “I think Amy Winehouse is dead”, the fact that the news coverage was in Catalan was the reason for her not being definite. She does have form on such matters because when Stephen Gately died, I was once again in a different room (not the bathroom) and again she shouted, “I think Stephen Gately has died”. This news report was in English so I’m not sure what the possible confusion was.

If not much happened during the holiday, getting to the airport proved more problematic. This was because we got cautioned by a Revenue Officer (Aidan 1004) on the train for travelling without a ticket. In our defence we were expecting to buy a ticket on the train as we did when we did that exact journey in November, but that wasn’t the case. Despite Aidan 1004 having a ticket machine he was unable or unwilling to sell us a ticket. Instead at Gatwick he issued us with a caution and when I say a caution, I mean he did the whole spiel about, “You do not have to say anything, but anything you do say will be noted and maybe used in evidence”. I’m not in any way saying this is a way for the train company to increase their coffers by fining people but the fact his title is Revenue Officer and not  Ticket Inspector, for example, does make me a little suspicious. Anyway I’m going to contest any fine should one be forthcoming, I will no doubt keep you informed.

Now I’m back, I have the realisation that I’m currently on downtime as there’s no schools open for me to work in and I have nothing lined up. Normally when faced by a period of uncertainty and poverty, I usually get stressed out. But at the moment I feel quite calm about things, I’m not sure why but it might have something to do with the fact that in the book 59 seconds that I was recently reading it had a chapter about how to deal with stress. It could be that or it could just be the fact that I’ve not fully comprehended the seriousness of my situation.

During my downtime, I’ve decided I’m going to run and eat potatoes. My reasoning being that in Sept, ‘HWOPJ’ and I are doing the Great North Run ( a half marathon) and I heard that Fearne Cotton did it last year in around 2hrs, so now I want to do it in around 2hrs. My thinking is that Fearne has achieved so much more in broadcasting than I have, so this is a chance for me to go a little way to addressing the balance. And my thinking with regards to the potatoes is that they are relatively cheap and yet fill you up. Essential if you haven’t got much disposable cash.

Talking of books as I was with 59 Seconds, I was speaking to someone recently who told me they have not read a book for 15 years. That seems like a long time, can anyone match that? The last book he read was Ian Wright’s autobiography, which probably explains a lot as I too have read that book and what I think must have happened is the guy in question must have read it and thought books don’t get any better than this, so it’s not worth reading any others. Retire when on top etc… The only problem with this approach is that you run the risk of missing out on any great books written after Ian Wright’s autobiography, such as, ‘How to Dump Your Girlfriend’. (you knew it was coming)

And Finally…. I will be performing as part of the 3 Prong Attack, tomorrow, Weds 27th July at Ruby’s Revenge, 168 High Holborn, London WC1V 7AA. Doors 7:30, Show starts 8:00. £3. Nearest Tubes, Holborn, Covent Garden and Tottenham Court Road.

Til next week, stay safe!

4 thoughts on “Back to Blighty

  1. Hi Julian,

    As part of your training for the GNR, may I suggest (if you haven’t already) popping along to and finding your local one. Get registered and print out your barcode and head off to the venue on Saturday morning – they start at 09:00, so try and get there 10 mins or so before the start.

    It’s a timed 5k run and results are published on the same day. And the good news is that every parkrun is free!

    For more serious training plans, you could do a lot worse than signing up to – and if you do parkruns too, they will even transfer the stats across to add to your runbritain profile.

    Happy running (parkrunning!)


    PS The last book I read was How to Dump Your Girlfriend – what an amazing coinceidence that you metioned it in your blog 😉

    • Hi Simon. Cheers for the running advice and the links to websites. It sounds like you are a bit of a runner. So far I have been running on the streets. I’m hoping to increase the distances I am running over the next few weeks. It will be nice to get back to running merely for fun. Have you done the GNR?

      Haha, I like your choice of reading, although I would say there are equally good books out there for you to sample.

      Speak soon and have a good week.


  2. I’ve pretty much limited myself to my weekly parkrun but I’m entered in the Salford 10k in September. If that goes well (and no reaon why it shouldn’t) I’ll put some serious thought into Manchester 2012 Marathon.

    One of my claims to fame (claim-to-fames?) is that I was the first official reader of HTDYG – Amazon sent my copy to arrive on the date of publication and it arrived a day early! 🙂


    • Good luck with the run in Sept, I’m sure you will do well.

      That is a pretty good claim to fame. If memory serves me right you had the book before we had our launch night. That is the power of Amazon.


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