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Thursday 10th July 2014


Aside from little rewrites and cuts as the rehearsal process progresses the play is now (for me at least) done. I popped into the rehearsal at lunchtime and it's looking good. I left them to it for the afternoon, so I could catch up on admin, blogs and write a Metro column. Even though I was technically working this felt like relaxing compared to how things have been. I find it hard to believe that I've got through this last month without collapsing, but in spite of getting by on about six hours sleep a night and having to do some gruelling personal training I am feeling remarkably fresh. I am sure that the exercise and healthy diet has helped me get through this difficult time.

As I walked home I found myself behind an actor who was on her phone chatting to a friend about the play she was in that was going up to the Fringe. She was panicking about how bad the script was and how exposed she was feeling in a piece which was not yet written and anticipating disaster. It made me feel both better and worse. I was glad to know that some playwright out there is less prepared for the Fringe than I am, but worried that my actors might be having similar hysterical conversations with their friends. It sounded like the play was by someone with some pedigree and it had a major theatre behind it, so I am guessing that this might just be jitters on the actor's behalf. But that's the tantalising and terrifying thing about being in something new. You have no idea if it's going to be a smash or if you're going to spend a month playing to tiny audiences and withering reviews. Sometimes you might have a feeling one way or the other, but you're invariably wrong. Of course the actors have to face the flak directly if it's a stinker so it's a bit more scary for them. Then again they don't face the financial burden of failure, so it's swings and roundabouts.

I got a call to say that my ring had been resized (what are you sniggering about?) and this evening popped down to pick it up. My days of singledom are over. I thought the woman in the ring shop was slightly flirting with me before she gave me the ring back, but this was too little, too late. I could see that her heart broke as the ring slipped back on to my finger, but those are the breaks. I suspect that it's probably against ring shop etiquette to try and pull your customers anyway. It felt good to have my ring back though and I don't think it's going to be falling off again, unless the diet goes amazingly well. And the danger is that if I slip back the other way then the ring will become a part of me.

They had also polished my ring for free (I told you that the sales assistant liked me). I had forgotten how shiny it had been to begin with. Maybe you should never polish your wedding ring so that as it gets dirty and corrodes it symbolises just how long the marriage has lasted. Or maybe every polish gives you a fresh start. Anyway it's good to be married again. Especially given how little interest there has been in me over the last few weeks. If love is a game of pontoon then I stuck just at the right moment. I think my wife might have been able to twist a few more times. Ha ha, I win, idiot wife!

If you're planning on coming to see both my play and my stand up show on the same day in Edinburgh then you can buy a combined ticket and save yourself a fiver here.

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