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Posted on Feb 5, 2008 in Writing | 4 comments

Saddle Up and Ride Your Pony

Oooh that was tough. Seems jumping back on the writing pony after so long isn’t going to be easy. Still, I soldiered my way to something that resembled output. I’ll settle for that. I’m sure it’ll get easier.

Wasn’t helped by the marvellous David Attenborough staring his new series last night. I was recording it but I was drawn to watch it nonetheless. It’s just great to see the joy that all these creatures still give him.

Seems apropos to fess up to the time I met David Attenborough. He was doing a book signing in Glasgow for the Private Life of Plants and I nipped away from work to meet the great man and get a book. All the way along St. Vincent St I was desperately trying to think of what I would say. I don’t have many hero-types, so meeting one was a big deal.

I made it to the head of the queue and got my book. And, having thought of nothing else told him what a great pleasure it was to meet him and “it isn’t often you got to meet a man who has seen a live coelacanth“. He wasn’t phased by this idiocy, he looked up and simply said “Yes, yes it’s true.

I found out many years later when reading an excellent book on the coelacanth that perhaps he had arrived a while after the coelacanth was caught. But it wasn’t clear so I’ll give the great man the benefit of the doubt.

Tune in next week folks for “When Scotty met Mr. Sulu.


  1. Haven’t been to too many book signings.

    Went to see John Shuttleworth in Glasgow where, in addition to my signed book, I won a cassette tape for being the first person to shout out the correct answer when asked for the name of John’s next door neighbour and sole agent (Ken Worthington, since you ask).

    And I met Brian Keenan (bloke who spent 5 years chained to a radiator with John McCarthy in Beirut) during the Bath Literary Festival one year. Extremely down to earth bloke, who was a big fan of one of the wee pubs in the village where I live. And I think he was pleased to talk to someone who maybe wasn’t a typical Bath Lit Fest attendee. Then I handed him a book to sign for the missus and he went all showbizzy by writing “Much love to a special lady”.

    Funny old world.

    So then – Mr Sulu…

  2. The said Sir David walked into a restaurant in Aviemore last Easter where me and m’family were dining. I was desperately checking to see when he went for a pee so I could casually join him at the urinal.

    But then I realised I’d probably not be able to go when I got there so wimped out.

  3. 🙂

    Well, in his line of work he’s bound to have seen bigger…

  4. Coming to think of it, kinda reminds of the day I had lunch at The Ivy. I deliberately went to loo loads of times and didn’t see a single famous person. What use is that for blog fodder?

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