Friday, 19 February 2016

Advice I'd Give my Younger Self

Please have a listen to my interview on the What's Offstage? programme, Soho Radio

                              Clearly channeling my Nana Silcox today...

  I had a thoroughly good time this morning being interviewed by Nina Davis on Soho Radio. We discussed Cafe de Paris, my book about entertaining in Iraq and Afghanistan coming out, my association with the start up Getclipcrowd media curation app, my floaty high notes, my stress rash, my fall over the timber that the gardeners had left in the kitchen where I'm house-sitting. Nina also played a track of me singing, which I did like, nicely!  But don't take my word for any of that, have a listen via the link above. Perhaps you've already had a listen, seeing as you're this far down the page. Perhaps you're going to go back and have a listen when you've finished reading. Perhaps not. Perhaps you won't finish reading, either. 
  I went to Piccadilly from Finsbury Park, reading The Sea, The Sea, the one Iris Murdoch novel I've never been able to get through before. I've tried and failed with it since 1983. I'm loving it this time around. And it occurred to me that it's now thirty years since I opened the first annual Rag Week Revue at Guildhall dancing Swan Lake with Peter Snipp as my Prince. I went to Guildhall from Finsbury Park that night, as I had student digs in Muswell HIll and would catch the W7 from the Broadway to Wells Terrace. I was in the middle of my Iris Murdoch phase at the time. I'm almost certain that I read The Nice and the Good on the way to and from that first Swan Lake
  And during the tube journey today I thought what I might have had to say to my twenty year old self. 
  I would have said this: Remember how mum and dad used to take you to that restaurant in Victoria when you were seven and you would always have Chicken Hawaiian Style and a Fanta? And mum would put a sugar cube in the Fanta to take the fizz away in case it brought on an asthma attack? Well, your future life will be like that risk of an asthma attack: ever a stress. And you're wrong in thinking that if and when you can earn a living from performing, all will be well.
  In life there are no sugar-cube-in-Fanta solutions. 

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