This afternoon I was in London with a train journey ahead of me and nothing to read on it. The Tube strike was in full swing, and as I walked from Wardour Street toward Euston I had time for a quick mooch around Foyles’ (I’d been recording a DVD commentary for an old Doctor Who, about which I’ll probably say more at some other time).
There it was, a collection of Charlie Brooker’s TV columns from The Guardian. For once I didn’t do my usual trick of giving it the once-over and then running home to order it from Amazon with a few quid off, but slapped down the Mastercard right there and then.
It brightened the journey back no end, although I did check the index first for any mention of shows I’d been involved in. Just to see if there were any bits I’d need to skip. For a thin-skinned soul like me, it’s always more entertaining to see others getting the roasting.
I’d spotted Brooker at this year’s BBC Vision Talent bash (don’t ask me what it was; a vast sweaty unlit hellhole crammed with thousands of bodies, is all I remember. It took place in some venue near the British Museum and the drinks were free. It was BBC-hosted and was like Piers Plowman’s “Field Full of Media Folke”).
I was tempted to collar him just to say thanks for a line in a recent column. Writing about Fearne Cotton and an interview she’d given to GQ magazine, he reckoned that mention of Ms Cotton’s depilatory practices would have set the GQ readership “wanking like an angry orchestra.”
But I didn’t.
I did, however, buy his book. Which I suppose is a more concrete form of appreciation.