December 1st 2020
One more day of lockdown so this is the penultimate entry for the Diary Of A Locked Down Comedian. So successful was this venture that I may just keep it going, maybe not daily, perhaps not even weekly and if I am being honest monthly sounds like a deadline I would struggle to hit, so I am just going to go with the ‘Diary Of A Whenever He Feels Like It Comedian’.
This all started so well. I decided a few days before the second lockdown began that I wanted a project, something to stop me going insane. I’d seen all of Bob Mortimers’ appearances on YouTube, twice, I needed something productive to do.
Each day I would sit at my laptop and just type. This is entry 27 and by the end of this sentence I would have typed 22,343 words during lockdown number 2. I am proud of that, it means on average, every day I have written 859.3 words. Two things hit me as I typed that. One, wow, professional writers aim for one thousand words a day and I would love to be able to call myself a ‘professional writer’. The second thing is an apparent love of maths. I could have easily added up all the daily word counts on a calculator, nope, I used a pen and pad, then for the average daily word count I used long division. I can only hope my old maths teacher Mr Lewis is reading this. The only word I think when I remember Mr Lewis is Nemesis. Well, maybe not the only word…but that really is a story for another day, and one I will never put into writing but if you want to hear it and you have my phone number, go ahead. I love to retell it.
Mr Lewis hated me from the day I mocked him in class after he threw a chalk duster at me during a lesson. And a wooden one too! The subject was Pythagoras theory and I was drifting off somewhere at the back of the room completely uninterested! When the clatter of wood on the metal desk grabbed my attention I looked up and saw the glare of Mr Lewis. My reply to his asking me if he had my full attention was
“Sir, when am I ever going to need know Pythagoras theory?”
“Of course Adams, you’re going to be a famous comedian you won’t need maths…”
“I’ll need to be able to work out fifteen percent of my earnings…”
Then a test, right there, Mr Lewis put me on the spot.
“15% of 100”
“15?” I replied sarcastically
“30” I replied, possibly yawning.
“300” surely the teacher had stumped his pupil this time.
“45, Sir, I believe there is a theme here…”
“Adams, to be a successful comedian you will need a stage name. What do you think of Joe King?” He said grinning as he has finally thought of something to shut up this annoying kid.
“I think we now know why you are not head of year Sir.”
Huge laugh from the class, and I chose that moment to leave the room, as I would over my career I would leave with laughter ringing in my ears. It was merely a coincidence that Mr Lewis had chosen that exact moment to yell “Get out!”
I don’t know exactly when that happened, many of my maths lessons with Mr lewis ended that way. Best I can offer is sometime around 1987/88.
My favourite kind of people are those that are big enough to put their hand up and say ‘I was wrong.’ I like to think I am one of those guys. In fact, I know I am because early in 2010 we were planning on turning my old marital home from a two bedroom house into a three bed, we had two huge rooms upstairs and a hallway. There were two walls in the hallway sticking out from the bedrooms and we needed to know the space they protected. How do you work out the space of a triangle? Yep, you guessed it.
I laughed, in fact, I guffawed.
“Ha, we need Pythagoras theory,” I told Kelly and I ran down the stairs. A good five minutes later Kelly wandered over to my desk. She thought I had gone for a tape measure but she found me at my laptop googling Coopers Technical collage, my old school, I had been searching for the phone number, successfully too and with the number now on the screen, I called.
“Coopers Technical Collage” I had found the right place.
“Could I speak to Mr Lewis please?”
“Who is calling?”
“Paul Adams, I am an ex pupil.”
“Can I ask what it is in relation too?”
“Well, in the late eighties I wasn’t listening to Mr Lewis when he was teaching us Pythagoras Theory, he threw a chalk duster at me to get wake me from my slumber and I told him I was never going to need to know this. It’s maybe twenty two years later and I need it today, I just wanted to apologise to him.”
There was a dialing tone, I had been cut off and I have still not managed to put my hand up.
These 876 words have pushed my lockdown total over 23,000. I know the exact numbers but I wouldn’t want to bore you…
Shots of Coffee: 4,
Reading: Dead At First Sight by Peter James
Listened to: Radio X, Luke Combs & Mumford & Sons
YouTube Tip: Bob Mortimer On Would I Lie To You
Word Count: 876