Goodbye Pie Fans, but then very soon, Hello New Book Enthusiasts
First of all, a note on football. I did not finish Ian’s Big Fat FA Cup Challenge. You might imagine that it wasn’t that demanding a fundraiser, but in the end, it was. En route to the Second Round game, Hartlepool United vs Harrogate Town, I became unwell, and had no choice but to return home. If I had got there, and seen Hartlepool beat Harrogate, I would have missed the third round, Hartlepool vs Stoke, because I was again unwell. By the time of the fourth round, Stoke City vs Stevenage Borough, I was just about to be admitted to hospital with pneumonia. So actually, the next round I might have made was Stoke City vs Brighton and Hove Albion, but in order to do so, Glenn and I would have had to pretend to be Stoke fans; and I just didn’t have the energy for it.
So, after all this time, my river which ran Hereford Pegasus, Stourport Swifts, Lichfield City, Basford Town, Solihull Moors, Hartlepool United (Stoke City), has ended up with me following my beloved Seagulls. I couldn’t be happier, or more proud. For a Brighton fan, these ARE the Glory days, and we have to enjoy them, even if all we can do is watch it on TV. But the target was always £2k, and the Challenge is still open, and I’m only a little way short, so if you felt able to drop a few bob in to get me limping over the line, wounded, bloodied, and, yes, somewhat bowed, that would be great.
As I write this it’s the night that Match of the Day is down to 20 minutes because of the withdrawal of the support of football from the BBC because of their disgraceful treatment of freelance presenter Gary Lineker. Though not really in the same league, he understated, I am an (occassional) freelance presenter for the BBC, and I too have noticed the authoritarian turn in political discourse in this country, as who cannot. And it will not do. Would Gary have been pulled if he’d tweeted ‘Stop the Boats’? Of course he wouldn’t. We are in a bad place, and worse times are coming.
This will be my last post in this format. In a few days, I’m off to spend some time with my great friend Paul Williams, and we’re going to rework the website so that it’s ‘One Fine Day’ friendly. I hope you like the new look when it comes… don’t know what it’s going to be yet, but it will be based around Julian Dicken’s illustrations for the book. As with ‘A Hero For High Times’, the bibliography for the new book will be available here, rather than in the print version. Mr Williams has curated (dread word) this website since the actual 20th Century, and I love him for it, as for many other things. It must be a contender for the oldest continuous writers blog; that’s why it’s ianmarchant.com, and not some convuluted address. There is almost 25 years worth of content knocking about on this site; stories, a play, music, radio stuff, a feature film, videos etc etc. You’ll still be able to access this stuff even after the make-over, which I hope you’ll enjoy.