Thursday, 30 August 2007

Claim to Fame

My first claim to fame – or the first one that I can remember – was at an office party in 1977 when I was working in London for Campaign magazine (THE magazine in the advertising industry) which might sound glamorous but wasn’t. I filed cuttings for most of the day in a tiny dark office (‘the library’) filled with grey filing cabinets.

The journalists, who worked next door in The News Room, terrified me, so at the office party, I skulked in a corner trying to look insignificant. I was 19, skinny and awkward, desperately shy. To my relief I spotted someone who looked as uncomfortable as I felt, and for some reason I went over and said hello.

‘Hello,’ he said, a great tall man with a shock of upstanding hair and big eyebrows. ‘My name’s Michael.’

We got chatting and I think he got me a drink and shortly after that I was rescued by Gay, the lady I worked with in the library.

‘What where you talking to Hes about?’ she said.

‘Who?’

‘Hes,’ she said. ‘Michael Heseltine.’ She shook her head at the look of bemusement on my face. ‘He not only owns Campaign, but Haymarket Publishing.’

Oh, God.

On a note that has absolutely nothing to do with fame, I now have a furious Bussie shut in the kitchen. This is very Infra Dig and an infringement of his civil liberties. He will doubtless sue me when he can. But he hasn't eaten for a week now and having had a long chat with Ruth, the vet nurse, I'm taking him to the vet to be Looked At. Think of me at 5pm, by which time Bussie will be incandescent with rage.

Oh, God. Times Two.

22 comments:

Lesley Rigby said...

It's quite clear to me now why Bussie hasn't been taken to the Vets before now. I don't like the sound of Bussie's fury! Obviously a cat with attitude. Good luck - I hope you have a sturdy cat basket.........and I hope he is on top form again soon. I will be thinking of you at 5pm.

Flowerpot said...

Thanks Lesley. Poor Bussie had a very unfortunate time at the vet when he was a kitten and they tried to chip him. I won't go into details, but he was terrified and hurt, so going to the vet is now a Last Resort. He's now sitting looking at the catflap (which is locked) with a large balloon over his head. You can guess what it says. (And 5pm is a long way off.)

Rebecca Taunton said...

Poor Bussie, but I'm sure it's the best thing for him. I'll be thinking of you and Bussie when I'm cycling back from work.

Fancy having spoken to Michael Heseltine and not knowing!

RT

Graham, Prince & Tilly said...

I hope all goes well, and you have an elbow length pair of gauntlets to hand!

Akelamalu said...

Can I have your autograph? ;)

Good luck at the vets this afternoon, I'll be thinking about you.

Flowerpot said...

RT - thanks - I wish you could see Bussie's expression right now!

G - I've just rushed out and bought a proper cat box (never needed one before) which is hidden in the front room. How long is it till 5?

Ak - yes, great fame! My autograph is so illegible, I can't read it!

Em said...

Came on here to ask after Bussie but I see you beat me to it! Hope everything goes OK at the vets and her doesn't shred anything he shouldn't!!

Nice claim to fame. I have a few.. a couple of girls I was at school with have managed to become famous (although one has since sunk into notoriety, sadly). But the best one is that I was, albeit briefly, in the BBC's Blood Of The Vikings. As a Viking :D We had fun.

Aoj & The Lurchers said...

Kid Jensen once stood on my toe at a Radio One Roadshow (Hands up who's old enough to remember them!). Does that count as a claim to fame?

And good luck with Bussie....rather you than me!

laurie said...

i'm not sure what time your 5 p.m. is here, i think maybe 11 a.m.? (in about an hour?)

but very very good luck to you!

and i loved your party story. i used to be afraid of journalists, too.

laurie said...

ps you can find vets here who will come to your house. very pricy,but sometimes worth it if your cat is really frightened of the office visit.

Flowerpot said...

aoj - that sounds a good claim to fame to me, albeit in a kind of back handed - or footed - way!

laurie - yes, teh time approaches very shortly! You've got the time change right. I think vets here would probably do home visits but at a frightening cost. Once we've got Bussie into the cat box he's OK (ish) - it's probably me that suffers more!

Lesley Rigby said...

Thinking of you sitting in the Vets or possibly driving there. Hope you and Bussie are O.K. Don't keep us waiting!

The Rotten Correspondent said...

Standing at my window I'm pretty sure I can hear Bussie from here. Sending very positive thoughts your way, as I think it's now 5pm your time.

Hang in there.

The Rotten Correspondent said...

looking at your time stamp, i guess I'm 2 hours off. hopefully you're back home with a glass of wine in hand.

Motheratlarge said...

How did it go? Hope you had good news at the vet's. You love Bussie very much, don't you? How funny about 'Hes'. I never thought of him as being approachable, for some reason. I shall revise my ideas having read your posting. I tried to get a job at Haymarket once, in the early 90's. Sadly without any success. Oh well. Don't know if MH was still there by then. Liked how you wrote this posting, keeping us in suspense!

Em said...

Still crossing fingers...

Flowerpot said...

sorry to keep you all waiting - we came home then had to go out again for the evening. Another blog on its way...

ChrisH said...

Oh, good story about Michael Hes! I'm glad you 've joined the novel racers -I've added you to my links. Will, alas, probably not be going to Winter party - the sheer cost of travelling back makes it prohibitive as we already have a number of family commitments in the pipeline. The sooner I'm discovered the better (hmm, better not hold my breath).

Flowerpot said...

chrish - thanks, I will add you and Liz to my links also. Sorry you're not going to the winter party but will keep in touch via cyberspace!

Mopsa said...

This is such a good name of fame story. I love it when folks (me included) have no idea who someone outrageously famous is. I went to school with George Michael - sat next to him in art class for a year - and I was in my twenties before a friend let me into the secret. I hadn't put 2 and 2 together - he was just a nice, intelligent, quiet curly headed boy.

lady thinker said...

Oh flowerpot - what a relief he's gone to the vets. I will have to screw up my courage to read your next post to find out the outcome.

Flowerpot said...

Mopsa - you went t school with George Michael? Gasp!!

Thinker - fear not, all is well!