I didn’t realise it when I decided to get involved in radio all those years ago, but this is the sort of job that lends itself to surreality.
Over time I have worn a chicken suit onstage in front of 100,000 people, had Brian O’Driscoll agree to come in and be interrogated by randomers just because he liked the show, done a show in a seat Terry Wogan once sat in, fed the sea lions at Dublin Zoo, presented awards ceremonies (extremely surreal!), I was once the warm-up act for Britney Spears.
I’ve worn a jacket Gerry Ryan once presented the Eurovision in, taken a penalty in Lansdowne Road, sang harmony vocals with The Walls, addressed a group of MEPs in the European Parliament, been on the 6 O’clock News, Michael Caine has heard of me.
I’ve stood next to Sport Damo while he asked Noam Chomsky about a question about US exit strategies from Iraq, addressed the Philosophy Society in TCD, been kissed by Colin Farrell, had Dave Fanning borrow a CD from ME(!), I once even had Jim Carroll write something nice about me 😉
I’ve taught Snoop Dogg how to speak Irish, had the Magic Numbers play in a room in which I was the only audience, Chris Moyles once called me “A legend”, I’ve even been bought a pint by Twenty Major.
It’s actually all quite humbling when I read all of the above in one place. That’s all allegedly work, you know, the sort of work other people do for a living. Working in factories, driving, answering phones to ungrateful people in call centres, dealing with rude customers in shops, breaking your back on a building site. For me I use my head, come up with stupid ideas and then talk. For me, what you read above are everyday occurrences to the point where, unless you’re careful, you can get blasé about them.
No fear of that happening actually – the more I work the more thankful I am for my ability to do this every day to put bread on the table (mmmm, bread….). Recently I’ve almost been dealing with all of this in reverse, almost. The more of these sort of things that happen the more appreciative I become of the job I have and how easy I have it in comparison to most other people I know.
Anyway – that’s not the point of this post, although it’s an interesting digression. This was about today. Today. More surreal than all of the above combined.
Turns out I’m in next year’s Guinness Book Of Records. Seriously.
You might remember last November on the evening show we had trad accordion player Liam O’Connor in to try and break the “world’s fastest fingers” record. He did, we all cheered, and off he went on his merry way. Lovely guy.
Then today this arrives in the post.
You see I was and am a geeky child. I bought, collected and devoured the Guinness Book Of Records every year when I was a kid (much as my eldest does these days much to my delight). Learned the big, important ones and always dreamed that one day I’d be in there too. Was never too sure as to how I’d do it as I was crap at almost everything and certainly not world standard in anything but that’s what it was – a dream.
Today, a reality. And I didn’t have to lift a finger to get in there. Magic.
Best thing that’s ever happened to me on the job, ever. I am easily pleased.