|Photo: Sune Frack|
I met a classics student with floppy blond locks and clipped vowels at a university ball. A bit of surreptitious internet research indicates that he is now a headmaster at a private school so a serious demeanour probably suits. Anyway, when he met me, I was looking at my peak of poshness in a wonderful cream off the shoulder number that I'd borrowed from a friend. Obviously as it was the eighties I had a luminous red streak running through my hair but even that didn't ruin the air of total sophistication. 'You have a neck like a thoroughbred stallion', was his first advance. Blimey, the Neanderthal blokes from where I'm from in Essex didn't make comparisons like that. They tended to show interest in more obvious ways like whipping their privates out in the middle of a nightclub. Yep, that actually happened once! I hasten to add that it's not a tactic that has ever had much chance of being successful with me.
Anyway back to the story. For a few weeks, with a lot of hard work, I managed to pull off total refinement. I hid my 'Wicked Willie' books and instead made sure that my copy of 'The Illiad, for after all I had done O level Latin, was illuminated by my desk lamp. The pretence was that it was the sort of thing that I read all the time. I disloyally eschewed The Cure and Morrissey for Faure and Allegri too. Don't get me wrong. I still love a bit of the classics but they form merely a tiny snippet of my listening repetoire.
In the end my cover was inevitably blown. After all you can't keep up an act forever. Floppy Boy accompanied me and my best friend out for a meal. He got something altogether different to the intense intellectual discussion that he thrived upon and was expecting. 'It was like being with a comedy double act with her as your straight man,' he announced with a visible shudder as he left for the final time.
Now I've seen a workshop that aims to teach stand up and I'm seriously tempted to try it out once my leg has returned to normal. Could my experience from youth mean that I might actually be quite good at it?