Back to reality and after a much needed 12 hour sleep I was back to work, paying bills, doing admin and writing my next week's Metro column (I love it when a news story prompts me to remember an old stand up routine that I can use - I for one am very thankful for global warming right now). I can't believe that this is my 84th column for the newspaper. As long as they haven't sacked me then I should hit my 100th one around about February. More excitingly, by my reckoning, my 4000th consecutive Warming Up is a little over a month away. I think the 6th November entry is the one. And once I've done 4000 I'd be an idiot not to go for 5000 right? It's only 3 years away. And if I do 5000 then why not 10,000. I only need to keep it up for another 17 years. Will you still need me, will you still read me, when I'm 63?
I also got the old Slytherin notebook out in preparation for Monday's RHLSTP with Shappi Khorsandi and Rufus Hound. I decided it was probably time for some new emergency questions, but they're quite hard to come up with. I have no idea what prompted the ham hand versus suncream armpit one that has stood me in good stead and many of the others have evolved organically from the podcast itself. People do send in their own ideas to me, but they're rarely any good. Either too derivative or not original or weirdly enough on the wrong side of the crude/cheeky divide. For some reason "Have you ever tried to suck your own cock?" is OK, but "Would you rather fuck your mum or your dad?" or "Would you prefer cocks for fingers or a finger for a cock?" are just not quite right. So don't send me emergency questions. I have to come up with them myself or employ 11 year old Welsh children to write them. Perhaps you need to be 11 to have the necessary lack of wordliness or self-consciousness to come up with the perfect question. Which doesn't reflect too well on me. But the badger/cow question and the "What's it like being Stephen Fry?" one have surprising depths and longevity, because they are somehow guileless. And however I chanced across hamhand and suncreampit, it was when I was in a frame of mind where I wasn't thinking too hard or let my subconscious take over. The question still has legs (but what are they made of or squirting out of themselves), but I think they will need to be gently retired over the course of this series.
I am also keen to try and create a catchphrase that is said in every episode but which nobody picks up on at all. That is quite a challenge. Something repeated, but not in anyway memorable or which doesn't want to make you to say it to try and fit in. I think I came close in RHEFP where I often used to say at the start of the competition, "Stand up on your two feet." But no one has ever shouted that at me or tweeted me about it. It's almost perfect, except I didn't say it enough. And maybe if I'd said it more then it would have entered some people's brains. Can I hide a catchphrase in plain sight but make it unappealing to everyone. It's a tough ask. I'll see what I can do. But for now I should probably concentrate on researching my guests.
Ben Grubb who was the assistant on the We're All Going To Die! photoshoot has put together this behind-the-scenes making of video, describing the poster design process from genesis to completion. Serves as a nice reminder (to me more than anyone) that the first tour date is on Tuesday in Braintree. Brighton and Reading are already sold out so do book ahead. All details are here (and I will also be in Cheddar on 27th February). Please spread the word to those you think might enjoy it!
And for the many, many fans of the hit song I wrote when I was 11, Please Come Back To Me, Terry has put together a blues rock version (with a little help from Simon Mann). You can listen to it here. Let's get this sucker to number one folks.