Sunday 10th April 2011

You know how I tell you every week that I’ll always be honest with you on here, so that when the day comes where I REALLY have some good news I’ll be able to truly enjoy sharing it with you?  Well; this week I took a brave step down a new road, and as I sit here writing this blog, I already know that it was exactly the right thing to have done.

You’ll have seen this blog grow from the first little offering last October into the ‘Magazine’ it’s become of late, and I’ve loved writing on such a wide range of topics every week, BUT … it’s been starting to take over my life.  Having to watch so much TV by a Friday night (to be able to include it in that week’s blog), doing the Comedy Course, my cleaning jobs and actually needing to sleep now and again, have begun to take their toll.

I was aware of it happening, but had got to a point where I couldn’t see the wood for the trees.  The initial goal of my blog writing was to bring ‘traffic’ to my site, and that – once there – I had the idea that people would enjoy what they read so much that they’d automatically buy my book and that –  in time – I’d be able to hang up my marigolds forever and crack on with writing the sequel to “Just Good Friends?” (which is written in my head), yet I’m not actually writing at all, and the second book  is never even going to see the light of day if I carry on like this.

Since that Friday night six years ago when I dreamt four lottery numbers clear as day and two others which were both 20-something numbers, but instead of doing every combination of 20-something numbers I just took a chance and chose two … but chose the wrong two (and lost out on a £6 Million jackpot the next night when all the numbers came up: depressed … don’t ask!), I’ve made a point of ALWAYS following my intuition, and my intuition tells me I’m doing the right thing now.

A chance conversation with a friend last week led to a meeting on Wednesday with a woman who – in the space of two hours, turned my thinking (and hopefully a lot of other things from here on in), around.  She’s my new VA/PA-person.  I won’t mention her now (for purely selfish reasons: she’s got a lot of work on sorting me out, so want her to concentrate on that!), but she listened to where I was ‘at’ and very politely pointed out that I’ve been focussing on the wrong things and been have been working ‘Hard, but not SMART’.

It’s very much ‘Work in Progress’ at this point in time, but this blog needs to have a completely different focus.  Much as I love writing it, I need to cut down on the time I’m spending on it and also be sure I’m really focussing it in the right direction, so-ooo …

Some stuff’s going to have to go; some new stuff’s going to be coming in, and if you’ve got any thoughts/comments/suggestions as to what YOU’D like to see, it would be really useful if you could email me directly ( or by clicking on the link), so that I can be sure the new blog’s going to be as good as it can be for my readers.

There’s other stuff in the pipeline too, but I’ll tell you about each new thing once it’s actually happened – rather than now, in case things don’t happen as planned (what does?), as I don’t want to have to be back-tracking on anything and looking stoopid!

Suffice to say though: this week’s blog will be a bit different (read ‘shorter’) than normal! I also have to say that I feel as if the weight of the world’s been lifted off my shoulders, and that HAS to be a good thing, yeah?  Ok, off we go …

I did an interview on ‘The Big Weekender’ show on Swindon 105.5 FM (4-6pm Fridays), this week.  Here’s a show that’s SO funny it ought to be on the BBC, but is tucked away on a tiny little station which broadcasts out of a vandalised phone box on a Swindon Council Estate (not really, but it’s not exactly Broadcasting House)!

Nick and Scott, the presenters, record sketches, have topical items (like a great off the cuff interview this week with Nick as ‘Nickglegg’ being interviewed on U-Turns and firstly angrily denouncing them before immediately doing one!), and the highspot of the show ‘Baguette Issues’, where the guys discuss an important political/topical issue, while each eating a giant baguette as quickly as possible (rendering their words unintelligible).

Speaking of  Nick Clegg. This made me laugh on Twitter this week.  Thanks to grumpy_pants for: “My new Nick Clegg alarm clock isn’t working. Once it gets to number 10, it just doesn’t give a f**k.”

Back to Nick and Scott.  Absolutely bonkers.  Their show is a cross between Steve Wright, Baddiel & Skinner, and a vocal version of some of the crazier items on this blog, and it was a complete buzz for me to be there with them.   They also play some great toones, and we even got a live performance from a young guy Mark Foster (only 17, bless), of a song he’d written himself, and who was the sweetest, most polite young man I’ve met in a long time.  He says he doesn’t just want five minutes of fame, but wants to work at his career as a musician and do it ‘properly’.  How great is that?

I did my slot, said my goodbyes and then … came back and did a bit more (talking about the Comedy Course, which is getting ‘serious’ now – with only a week to go to our performance!).  We all got along so well that they’ve offered me a regular slot – hooray!  It’ll be three weeks before I’m back on, but I hope you’ll try and catch them this Friday (before they’ve got the cheek to take a fortnight’s holiday!), as – trust me – in my opinion (other opinions are available of course), it’s Comedy Gold (and I take my comedy seriously, as you know)!

TV Times

Talking of Comedy Gold: I know I’ve mentioned him before, but the BBC have just started repeating Ed Reardon’s Week right from the first-ever Episode on the new BBC4 Extra. You can still catch Episode 1 on iPlayer till Tuesday, so if you’re any sort of writer (or have ever ranted about the world in any way, shape or form), Ed Reardon just says everything you’re thinking, and you’ve got a TREAT in store. I guarantee you’ll be hooked after the first couple of minutes!

Candy Cabs

The first Episode of this new BBC1 Series was like happy deja-vu for me.  If you’re old enough to remember Playing The Field, Clocking Off, Cutting It etc, it’s basically the same show, but with pink taxis.  In fact, half the cast of those shows have turned up in this one, which virtually guarantees you’ll know exactly what’s coming, and that it’ll definitely be re-commissioned for a second Series at the very least!

Neither Lisa Millett or Jo Joyner would have been my obvious choice as the leads, but they have a great chemistry.  Jo’s even got the accent off pat, and her bubbly character just spills out through the screen (as does her voluptuous figure – which I’m extremely envious of).  Mind you, I’d watch her even if she just sat there picking her teeth, but she totally owns that role; the Series has got great potential, and I can’t wait for next week!

Paul Kaye’s come a long way too, since his early days as the shockingly irreverant Dennis Pennis, and has cornered the market in scruffy, drunken/drugged-up losers!  It’s a real ‘feel-good’ show, and with a group of strong-minded Northern women at its core, is sure to be another winner for the BBC.


And talking of winners (see how I move seamlessly from one bit to another?  Yeah, ok), it’s time for MasterChef ‘The Critics.’  They even had them standing like they do on X Factor (Charles Campion’s the equivalent of Simon and Louie put together).  He does make me smile.  Most Restaurant Critics somehow manage to look as if they rarely ever inhale more than a mouthful of vanilla foam, but he more than makes up for them!

I kept thinking how similar John looked to Michael McIntyre this week!  I won’t drone on about my usual gripes from this series (see previous blogs), but I must just say “Greg mate; stop calling them all “Mate”, mate.  Ok mate?  Thanks mate.”

Tim’s comment “I’m experiencing a mixture of delerium and exhaustion,” as he finished his stint, is exactly the way I’ve felt at the second I finally hit the ‘Publish’ button on this blog of late!  I think – on balance – that Jackie should have gone though.  Even if she hadn’t started self-harming, she still wouldn’t have got finished, and James did.  Just my opinion.  Looking forward to next week.  They’ve done their best to ruin it for us this series but we’ve all kept watching.  I’m looking forward to being able to purchase ‘Micro cress’ in Supermarkets soon too.

Next week I will mostly be watching: Britain’s Next Big Thing BBC2 8.00 Tuesday. Theo Paphitis is back with this entertaining Dragon’s Den stylee show, and Desperate Housewives is back on C4 9.00 Wednesday – yay!

Quote of the Week

“Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” Thanks to Twitter’s tracksuitdave for that.

“Take a moment to think about those less fortunate than you. It makes that champagne taste even better.” Thanks to Twitter’s GreySkyThinking for that tongue-in-cheek one!


Just a quick one this week – sorry.  Archer-y will be back to its full Omnibus Edition next week!  Not much to say this week anyway, apart from hoping that Roy takes the job at Lower Loxley (you know it makes sense), and that Cathy calms down a bit.  She’s heading for a meltdown in the sunshine is that woman.

A little comment for Ruth (and for anyone who employs a cleaner in the real world), to consider.  Having spent fifteen years as a professional Housekeeper/cleaner, can I just point out that the time your cleaner spends having to tidy up your clutter could be better spent actually doing the cleaning … which is what you’re supposedly paying her for.  Just a thought!

Soap-y Corner

Alas, apologies, but no Soap-y Corner as such this week either, but there WILL be a Corrie Corner blog on the Corrie Countdown website tomorrow.  Just ‘roll on’ Friday, when Ronnie finally reveals all on EastEnders!  Please tune in next week for a ‘new-look’ Soap-y Corner.

Foodie Corner

Apparently KFC can’t use its catch phrase ‘Finger lickin’ good’ any more. After having seen one of its franchisees eating it then licking his fingers in the background to one of its 1950s TV commercials, a viewer rang in to complain.  A KFC Manager responded with the line “Well, it’s finger-lickin’ good.”  It stuck, and has become one of the most successful corporate branding exercises in history.  It’s being replaced with ‘So good.’ Hasn’t got that same ring, has it?  You’d think it was an April Fool’s joke, wouldn’t you, but it’s not!


I had to do a bit of a ‘cull’ of some of the people I was following this week, purely in my new quest to use my time more wisely.  The more people you follow, the more tweets you see, and the more tempting it is to spend ages reading when you should be working!

As soon as I had, I lost a few followers.  It seems that some people only follow you if you follow them back.  I follow people I’m interested in, and hope that the people who follow me do so for exactly the same reason – not just because it’s ‘another’ follower.  I follow a lot of people who don’t follow me back, but that’s not why I’m following them.  I’m following them because I like what they say.

I’ve just read that there’s apps that put out messages about you when you stop following someone, and some that will automatically delete people who don’t ‘follow back’.  I wasn’t aware that it had become compulsory to have to follow people who follow you – and vice-versa?  If you’re just on Twitter to get followers then I feel you’re probably missing the whole point of  what Twitter’s about …

Thanks again to my number one source of great/useful tips Carol_Stephen for these 10 Must-Have Apps for Twitter & Facebook.  (Tweetdeck is the one she uses, what About You?)

Thanks to TweetSmarter for this: How to Revoke Permissions for Apps in Twitter

Any Other Business

Sorry if your favourite spot hasn’t been in this week.  Bear with me and let’s see what I come up with by next week now that I’ve got Alex on the case!

Just to end on a smile:” I’ve worn out my Justin Bieber CD by repeatedly rubbing it with sandpaper.  It sounds much better now.”  Thanks to Twitter’s RogerQuimbly

Sarah Archer’s Comedy Course:

Any Other Business

BestFunnyBlog Best of AwkwardFamilyPhotos

darrenrovell Is this the worst obstructed view of all time? (via @kvnryn)

One Response to Sunday 10th April 2011

  1. Jane April 25, 2011 at 1:07 pm #

    Thanks for your comment/query. It’s a simple WordPress template.

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