I started the day reading about the near-miss accidents that have occurred with nuclear weapons in the last half century, which pretty much convinced me that we're all fucking doomed. From workmen dropping tools down silos to disaster being averted only by a strong wind and an heroic fireman, you realise pretty quickly that given the number of these weapons in existence and the number of hopeless human beings looking after them (we're all hopeless and prone to error- that's the point) it's pretty much guaranteed that one of these bad boys is going to go off by mistake at some point. Or on purpose. Either way the results are not good.
Even without slapstick guards and computer glitches and fires, it's pretty likely that terrorists will get hold of something like this at some stage or just that some crazy or fundamentalist or psychopath will find himself in charge of a bomb or two and see it as their duty to put on the best fireworks display there has ever been. Mutually assured destruction doesn't work if that's what one of the sides wants anyway. It just doesn't seem feasible that between now and the end of human history there won't be a leader who wants to do that - I can think of about a dozen leaders from the last 70 years who would almost certainly have done it in the right circumstances. It seems pretty likely that one will go off by accident or design in the next 70 years. And if one goes off it's likely that loads of them will.
They shouldn't put this stuff in the paper - I want to live in ignorance and try to pretend that I won't depart this life burning like a Roman Candle, shouting, "We finally really did it. You Maniacs! You blew it up! Ah, damn you! God damn you all to hell."
I don't know what I am worrying about. After all only two cities in the last 70 years have been destroyed by nuclear weapons. I am sure we can survive for a species for half a million years without that happening again.
Weirdly though having nuclear weapons is very much like owning a gun - statistically the chances are it's going to end up killing you rather than whatever threat you are perceiving.
But aside from that it was a good day. We went for another run and managed 5 miles fairly comfortably (though it hurt a bit afterwards). Everything felt quite fluid and I enjoyed it and we did it in just under an hour, so I am a bit more hopeful about completing the half marathon in three weeks time. We also bumped into my oldest friend from school, Philip Fry (not that one) who was cycling along the river and invited him round for dinner tomorrow. But in all the exertion he must have misheard because he came round for dinner tonight and we weren't in. Poor Phil Fry.
We were out watching Pappy's Last Show Ever, which started at the unusual time of 5.45pm and cost a remarkably paultry £4.50 a ticket. What's wrong with these guys? They're on TV now. We missed this show last year in Edinburgh, so it was great to finally catch it. It's silly and knockabout and even a little poignant (though that bit made me laugh the most) and has one of the finest bits of audience participation that I've ever seen (though the lady they brought up entered into the spirit of things to an amazing degree) and could be a kids' show but for a few beautifully timed swears and inappropriate comments (and also a double-ended dildo). TV has never quite captured how great these boys are in a live setting, managing to be both slick and shambolic, rehearsed and ad-libbed. They have always reminded me slightly of the Seven Raymonds, the sketch group I was in at University (in fact I think we could sell them some of the sketches) and make me wish that we'd stayed doing the stupid knockabout stuff. We went in very tired from our exertions and left feeling buoyed up. I am very much beginning to appreciate shows that set out to entertain and lift the spirits, rather than ones that bring you down by reminding you you're all going to die and that nuclear explosions are inevitable.
They've been going a while now. When they started they were boyish and fresh-faced. Now they look a bit more grown-up, but for me that makes the whole thing much funnier. I hope they stick together forever and are still doing this stuff when they're 70. It won't be truly hilarious until then. They've got a second series of their TV show, but I haven't heard anything from them about having me on as the incompetent milkman character that I dreamt up on the podcast I did with them. I am sure the contract is in the post.