I began writing in 1994 on finding freedom of expression upon completion of a 22-year army career. Demob day allowed me to consider life beyond the military when I could enjoy observing and meeting people who didn’t spend all day learning how to kill other people for a living.
Did you hear the one about why town criers like wearing tights – even when they are not working in period costume…
For the record, I have also been a cowboy promoting beef jerky for a US snack food company, Father Christmas at Harrods, Mister Sinister at the London Dungeon and a parrotless pirate entertainer. Now it is words that mostly move me (although my doctor insists All Bran is better). The books that I’ve had published say more of who I am than pontificating about it here. But for the record, my style is not that of attack dog Piers Morgan or the false indignation of Jeremy Kyle at what is wrong with the world. My style has been described as a cross between Sarah Millican without the swearing and Jasper Carrot without the ranting.
In the company of a great wordsmith, poet Benjamin Zephaniah.
At the Humber Mouth Hull Literary Festival.
The pub is where I have spent a lot of my time, not just for booze but all that is on offer: Sky Sport, pub grub, conversation, meeting up with friends and handy beermats to scribble ideas on. Okay, real ale is also a draw but please note that my writing is not all related to pubs and drink. (See Poems page for examples)
As an official Aletaster, I say cheers to the Yorkshire Brewing Company who produced a beer in celebration of the 20th anniversary of East Riding of Yorkshire using my Town Crier image and appropriate fun strapline: IT’S MY SHOUT! As such, I feel it appropriate to offer a beer related thought.
Whatever our tribal allegiance,
Whatever our colour of skin,
Whatever pursuits we follow,
Whether we lose or win,
Making victory taste sweeter,
Is the loser gets the drinks in.
The late Nelson Mandela said: “I never lose. I either win or learn.” With respect to Mandela, the truth is we would still rather win because one thing losers sure as hell learn is that it can cost them a round of drinks. The saving grace, though, is that whilst winners may think they deserve their drink, losers know they need theirs – and for this reason it can sometimes taste equally as sweet.