Growing up and listening to Motown records, Diana Ross also became one of my idols. As a young, hopeful yet slightly delusional young kid, I wrote to Jim'll Fix It to ask to become a Supreme. Needless to say the BBC's budget couldn't stretch to flying me off to Detroit, so I lost out to a bunch of boy scouts who wanted to ride the big dipper at Blackpool Pleasure Beach whilst eating hamburgers and milkshake. Years later I joined thousands of others at the NEC and saw Diana Ross in concert. During the Motown medley, Ms Ross ventures into the audience during 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough' and is heading in my direction. First my hands start sweating, then as she gets nearer I begin hyperventilating and reach for the nearest nebulizer despite not being an asthmatic. As she is stops in the aisle next to me I then begin to shake, weep in the style of Rita Fairclough complete with dripping nose just as she stretches out an outreached hand during 'If you need me, call me...'. Diana looks down in disdain at this gawping, crying, snot stained gibbering fool with a breathing problem who (and this makes me cringe to this day) can only manage the awful words 'Can I be one of your Supremes?'. To be honest, under scrutiny of concert lighting, Diana looked a little like a transvestite from Funny Girls Blackpool in that she had this huge hair, about an inch of makeup applied and the longest and strangest false eyelashes seen anything other than a giraffe. Years later, and here comes the letdown, Diana publicly makes a show of herself at a British airport claiming the female Customs Officer had sexually molested her. Later on she was filmed being caught by the police driving while intoxicated and abusing the police. There's a saying never meet your idols which is probably true until I met my final idol.. Dawn French quite by accident. She was funny, generous of her time and very down to earth. As for the others, ah well, it seems idols are human after all and are just like the rest of us... get drunk occasionally and write a load of crap....
Saturday, 26 December 2009
During this morning's ponder in the shower, I was thinking about one of my comedy idols and then about idols in general. It had started with me thinking about the rubbish tv programmes this christmas and in particular Victoria Wood's mid-life christmas tv offering which was utter pants. So bad in fact, having hemorrhoids would have been funnier. You see the problem is Victoria Wood has been my comedy idol for over 30 years and this one duff programme has unfairly I suppose, left me in a void of disappointment with Ms Wood. Maybe I'm being too harsh as everyone is allowed a bad day at the office but the excellent live performer and creator of the Barry & Freda song, Kitty, Acorn Antiques and Dinnerladies should then pen such hogwash is a big let down. And so to the other idols throughout my life and how for very different reasons they turned out to be less idol and more letdown. From a very young age I sat mesmerised watching the greatest player on a football pitch flying down the wing with skill, panache and blessed with dark brooding looks. From that moment onwards, I knew I would be hooked forever and irrevocably to George Best and Manchester United. And when he left United after troubled times with the club, I still loved him and his womanising, gambling and E-Type Jaguar ways. George still played football and at times showed some of the genius of his times at Man Utd. On the pitch he was a star, but as time went on and the excesses of alcohol and antics off the pitch got more of a hold, George Best's star began to fade. Better to remember George in the red and white of United terrorising defences than to watch his embarrassing slurring on talk shows and eventual health decline with liver disease.