F is for …. Funnyman #LindasA-Z

Oh no. What will happen to the world’s kipper industry now our darling Lord Flashheart has died?

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Bizarrely, looking back, it was my parents who first introduced me to Rik Mayall in the form of a very unexpected Christmas present – a video (hark at how old I am) of some guy called Kevin Turvey who I’d never heard of. Perhaps it was because they watched it with me, but I found it more squirmy than funny the first time I saw it…. I think they found it so funny because of his broad West Midlands accent – how quickly we forget where we come from!

Next time Rik came to my attention was when the guy who worked with me on a Saturday in my parents shop asked me if I’d ever seen The Young Ones, stating how amazing he thought it was. I was shocked. Was this some cunning ploy to distract me from our usual tea break game of eating jam doughnuts without licking the sugar from our lips while looking up rude names in the phone book? How could this cool 80’s teenager think that The Young Ones was amazing?! Was it some Una Stubbs crush? How could he be admitting to be a Cliff fan in public? I’d thought he was someone to look up to! He played ace air guitar using just a brookstick, had a teabag t-shirt and bleached jeans! How could this epitome of cool be saying these things to me? The shock was enough to make me lose that week’s no sugar licking/rude name game I can tell you.

He told me when and where the next showing of The Young Ones would be, explained no more and left me perplexed as to why Cliff would need to be shown after the watershed.

And then I watched it.

Fortunately without mum and dad this time.

Oh. My. Word.

I think perhaps the controllers of the BBC had assumed the same as me and thought, ahhh, that lovely Cliff fellow making a series for us.

How wrong we both were.

The first episode I saw was Bambi….

I don’t think life has ever been the same again since. I can’t resist if I find an episode of The Young Ones while I’m flicking through telly channels late at night even now. Next thing I know I’m setting series link. It’s irresistible, stupid, shocking, laugh a minute sheer and utter mad brilliance.

Then, in 1993, they brought the madness LIVE to a stage near us – unbelievable and not to be missed!  We were lucky enough to see them performing Bottom live at The Great Hall of Exeter University. What a night it was! If Bottom was outrageous and funny on telly, live it was something else. I’m so glad I took time out to look around me while we were there because the sight of so many people holding their stomachs and wiping away tears from their faces was unbelievable (in a good way, not mass hysteria or food poisoning) and one I’ll never forget. If you could have harnessed the power from the laughter that night you could have lit up the whole world.

I’m so sorry for Rik’s family, friends, colleagues and each and every one of us who he has made laugh over the years. He’s left us far too early and there’ll never be another one like him.

He has left us with an amazing legacy of laughter and with a generation of children who have been brought up by us madsters who have been brain addled by his brilliance – thank goodness.

Farewell People’s Poet. Goodbye to one of the funniest B’stards ever to tickle my funny bone (oo-er).

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E is for …. Escaping #LindasA-Z

Prior to moving house we used to be very good at escaping. We just used to pile in the car and off we’d go. Sometimes with a plan to go somewhere new, or somewhere old, or just to see where we ended up. I hadn’t really realised that we’d stopped doing it so much, but looking back over the past year’s photos that I’ve taken, it’s obvious that we don’t do it so much. I’m not sure whether it diminished when we decided to move as we had so much to do to the old house before we left it, and then the new house when we moved in? But, whatever the reason, this week we’ve managed to get some good quality escaping done and it’s been blissful – like a mini holiday.

Kev had booked Thursday and Friday off work for his birthday so we’ve had a long weekend, which always helps with escaping. Thursday we went to a daytime showing of X-Men: Days of Future Past. If you’ve never been to the cinema during the day when everyone else is still at work, I encourage you to do so. I always look forward to a trip to the cinema and then spend much of the film being frustrated by the people who eat, chat and who don’t think the “turn off your phone” message can possibly relate to them. By going during the day, if you avoid school holidays, you eliminate most, if not all, of that problem. And Hugh Jackman’s backside……oooops, I mean the film, was great too!

Friday we were invited out for lunch with my parents, for Kev’s birthday. Rather than wait until lunch time my dad text me in the morning and said that he’d heard there’d be a fly-past in Lyme Regis in remembrance of D-Day, did we fancy going? Perfect escape material, off the cuff, unplanned and something very worthwhile going to see and a good way to remember those who sacrificed so much so that we can live the lives that we have since those dark and sad days.

Whilst the weather as we were leaving home was looking decidedly dodgy and we took raincoats, the weather at Lyme was so beautiful that we ended up sat on the seafront, having been to buy cold drinks and suntan lotion! Still managed to get burned though! Didn’t manage to get a decent photo of the fly-past, but this one of the sea front scene will remind me of a lovely morning.

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We also managed to do a mini escape on Saturday after I’d finished work. My daughter and I went to the Awliscombe and Weston Fête which is held in the grounds of a local pub (what sensible people!). It’s by far my favourite fête of the year and a place where I manage to catch up with lots of lovely people, some of whom were the first I knew when we moved to Devon. We also managed to see our first ever duck race as well!

We didn’t manage to do quite so well as this man had with his escape session though! Had to zoom in hard to get a photo of him but I think this is the first time I’ve ever wished I was a into fishing!

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All of this has gone to remind me how much I love escaping and what a great thing it is to be able to do. We still have a whole day of the weekend left so who knows what might happen?!