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Wednesday 1st November 2006

Last night I had been invited to attend the National Television Awards at the Royal Albert Hall. I had been invited by the executive who has commissioned one of my scripts and so was up in one of the swanky boxes looking down on the vast auditorium thronging with hundreds permatanned actors, Big Brother and X Factor attention seekers and braying hysterical members of the public. It was a spectacular and terrifying sight and now I finally know how many arseholes it takes to fill the Albert Hall.
I am joking. It was a fun night, but I got steadily drunker on the free champagne (and then later white wine) that was provided for us. My favourite moment was when David Tennant (deservedly) won the best actor award and the cameras immediately cut to the bloke from Hollyoaks to get his reaction, as if he had been the obvious choice and they wanted to see hoe surprised he would be. Surprisingly he didn't look surprised. Correctly he just looked glad to be there.
During the evening I got into stabbing distance of Vernon Kay, Patrick Kielty and Nikki from Big Brother. Alas my knife had been taken from me at the door. I say all this to look like I am cool and cutting edge, but I was actually massively in awe of them all. I also almost talked to Dr Karl Kennedy from Neighbours (I stood next to someone I knew who was talking to him) and actually properly talked to two of the cast of Dr Who (Billie Piper's mum and her boyfriend - beat that) and also the camp dentist and the dippy hippyish girl from "My Family". I am Mr Showbiz. The My Family people were especially lovely as I was very drunk and kept joking about how the show wasn't the same without Kris Marshall and other such stuff that I thought was terribly witty at the time, but was of course just mainly rude. Luckily they seemed to forgive me.
Anyway the upshot of all this gallavanting with the elite of British showbusiness is that today I was quite hungover. Not disastorously so, but enough to take the edge of things. It's a good job I wasn't doing the Fullstops show today as I would have been even less capable of answering anything vaguely intellectual.
The problem with being my age is that now if I get drunk I pretty much have to write off the whole next day a far as working goes. It's not always true, but it's certainly much more difficult to get my brain into gear and recover. So I decided to try and get some other stuff done so that I could press on with writing the script that gave me access to the NTA tomorrow.
I had to buy an ironing board and get my hair cut. There were plenty of other things on my list but these were the ones that I decided to go for.
The problem with the haircut was that I had to spend half an hour sitting looking at my bloated puffy face (puffed up, not homosexually) in the mirror. I looked old and knackered and it wasn't a pretty sight. I may have mentioned this before but I wish that I had had a photo of myself taken every time I had got a haircut in my life. Right from the first time I must have gone to a barbers when I was about four, right through to the last time my hair ever got cut. It would be an interesting project. Not just to see the changing hairstyles I would have over a lifetime, but to get a monthly snapshot of your progress through the ageing process. For me there would be some fun in seeing my weight balloon up and down. The photos would have t be taken in the mirror so that you also caught the reflections of the hairdresser's shop and preferrably the hairdresser themselves. Think how stuff reflected would literally hold up a mirror to the time and place that the picture was taken in.
That would be a brilliant project. If you have a child who has never had their hair cut professionally then can I suggest you start this up with them.
After the haircut I went to buy an ironing board. I went to a shop in Chiswick that sells all manner of bulky household items. When I put the ironing board up on the counter the checkout girl gasped and made a noise to suggest that she thought this was a big item to be buying. Like she was surprised that her shop selling all manner of bulky household items would stock such a bulky household item. Her day must be one of constant surprises.

November quiz - Question 1
I used to be on television and last month in Africa I saw a hippopotamus. Apart from that what connects the words "television" and "hippopotamus" making them (according to my friend Tony and he may well be right) unique in the English language (if it's possible for two things to be unique, but you get my drift)?

Please wait until the end of the month before sending all 30 answers in together. Anyone sending answers individually will immediately invalidate their entry to the competition.

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