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Thursday 22nd October 2009

Today really was my day off, but I still had to do a half hour interview with a journalist, some extra links for the Hasselhoff documentary and a Collings and Herrin podcast and make an appearance at my 2nd Karaoke Circus.
But hardly any of that was like work at all. The podcast was fun and worth listening to the end for one of the funnier moments from the 100 or so hours of rubbish that we have spouted over the last two years. And the opening is pretty funny too. I had already been reduced to a weeping, jibbering wreck when I heard this bit of an interview with Collings on Radio Norfolk. There is just the perfect amount of surprise and confusion from Collings before he leaps back into professional broadcaster mode. And I love the childishness of the interviewer referencing this obscure catchphrase.
We were disturbed during the podcast by a helicopter hovering nearby. It wasn't until afterwards that we realised it was all connected to the appearance of Nick Griffin at nearby TV Centre.
Collings and me headed up for a romantic meal before making our way over to Great Portland Street and the Albany for Karaoke Circus. We saw the crowds outside the BBC from the tube. It was cool to see them protesting, but personally I think it's important to let Griffin speak, not only because he and his party apparently represent a million people (and if you want to protest then protest against the people who voted them in and more pertinently those who didn't vote and allowed them in), but also because I was convinced that by allowing Griffin to speak people would be able to see how odious and unBritish his views actually are. Let the racists speak. They are cocks. And will show themselves to be so. Although in France, some argue the far right were boosted by TV appearances.
Anyway for the moment we had singing on our minds. I was going to perform punk classic "Orgasm Addict" by the Buzzcocks (I know you're not meant to have a "the" in their title, but I am putting one anyway) and Andrew Collings was going to screech his way through Lithium by Nirvana. In actual fact he was pretty good, especially on the more shouty and rock n roll bits and I did a bit better with punk than I did with Sparks in Edinburgh. It was an exhilarating two minutes on stage, some of which has been captured by the ubiquitous @AndyMcH on video. So you can make up your own mind. Most of the band were, as you might hear unfamiliar with the piece, but that maybe makes it more punk.
The star of the show was Jessica Hynes who gave a phenomenally professional performance and could easily be a top singer if she wasn't a top actress. It seemed unfair that she was using talent.
It was a fun night of letting my hair down (literally, as it happens, it was in my mouth most of the way through the song), but I returned home in time to see the end of Question Time and Griffin being passed around and bummed by the others like an ugly fat mannequin (not literally, though that would have been fun). Bonnie Greer, came in with the point that I was urging someone to make about how the indigenous people of Britain must have migrated from the south and showed what was great about being British (even though she is American, but in a way that's the point). I drunkenly tweeted away as the death throes of Griffin and his party were hopefully being documented. Watching the rest back later my favourite bit was when he claimed he had been part of "an almost entirely non violent branch of the Ku Klux Klan" which is a bit like saying "I was a worker on an almost entirely non planet destroying Death Star" or "I was a member of an almost entirely non child molesting ring of paedophiles". Or "I fucked ONE sheep!"
Twitter made the experience communal and fun in a way that only it can and I got plenty of ideas for AIOTM or Russell Howard's Good News, the first episode of which had the misfortune to be up against the only Question Time in history that has won half the country's viewers. You should have a look on iPlayer though - I think it's pretty funny and about two of my ideas were in it.
And thanks to Lawrence Axe who recorded this mini documentary of the first AIOTM. Hope you enjoy seeing my scared porn star face.

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