MY PAST INTERESTS
As a child I used to watch a programme called Get Your Own Back. It was hosted by a man called Dave Benson Phillips. In the show they got these kids on who wanted to get their own back on a family member who had done something to annoy them and they told the story about what the family member had done and they brought on the family member and the audience booed that family member. At the end of the show they covered the family member in gunge. I could watch clips of it on YouTube but I’m not that interested in watching it again.
Initially I liked it because the gunge pool had writing on it and I was fascinated by what it would look like after the family member went in it although the design probably didn’t look so fascinating afterwards. I also used to pretend that they had different characters from children’s programmes such as The Blobs, Lavender Castle and Dino Babies as designs on the gunge tank, one for each episode. I now know that if they tried that, they would have had an awful lot of trouble getting it absolutely right.
I used to like going to the pictures. I remember seeing Chicken Run, at the pictures when I was 13 in July 2000 with my class on our trip to Letton Hall and I liked it so much that over the rest of 2000 I saw it 4 times in total. The following year I saw Shrek 1, and I enjoyed it so much that over the Summer of 2001 I saw it 6 times in total. My next favourite film was Finding Nemo, in 2003, which I saw 3 times. I first saw it on the 12th of October 2003, then again at my Nan’s house in the same month but I don’t remember the date, and again in December 2003. On 15th July 2004, we went to see Shrek 2, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I enjoyed ‘Shrek 1’ as sequels are never as good for me. When we were going up the escalator in the cinema I saw a reference on the wall of an animated film which was Shark Tale, and it looked very good indeed. Before seeing ‘Shrek 2’, we saw a trailer for the film ‘Shark Tale’, and my mood stayed high during the day. We saw the film on the 17th of October 2004 and I saw it again with my Nan and Granddad in the same month but I don’t remember the date when I saw it for the second time and this time I felt like twice was enough times to see the same film. The last time I went to the pictures was on the 8th of July 2008, and the film I saw there on that day was Kung Fu Panda, but I didn’t thoroughly enjoy it.
I’ve come to the conclusion that the reason I fell out of love with going to the pictures is because I used to love keeping count of how many films I was seeing at the pictures and the order of films in numbers I saw, and there was a sense of fantastic excitement about that because I just knew that I was hearing about all these brand new films completely fresh, and that was a very exciting feeling. Well anyway, for a few years, I kept going to the pictures with my Mum and her boyfriend and seeing films at the pictures that I didn’t really want to see, and that really demoralised the importance in my life of going to the pictures.
Another thing I used to be interested in is making up my own version of the world and making up my own stories for it, but they were private stories in my life, and they featured storylines that were stolen from other stories. It came directly from being about 10 years old and making up an episode of The Blobs that featured a bit stolen from an episode of Huxley Pig where Huxley the pig had a bun, and he gave Horace the rodent a bun, and Horace said, “Huxley, there’s a squashed fly on mine” and Huxley said, “Well I’ll exchange it for a current then”. Anyway, I made up this episode of ‘The Blobs’ with exactly that from the episode of ‘Huxley Pig’ with Puppy Purple saying exactly what Horace the rodent said, and Fizzy Orange saying exactly what Huxley the pig said. I now know that it would be a form of plagiarism if I pretended that that was my own idea, unless it was for private use.
In late 1998 when I was 11, I developed an interest for making up people with heads of cartoon characters on them, only at the time it was with male ones, and Sonic The Hedgehog was one of them. It came from watching an episode of Chris Evans TFI Friday and seeing dancers on stage wearing puppets on their heads, only I hadn’t realised at the time that they were puppets of members of the rock band U2. A year later in late 1999 when I was 12, I started doing it with female ones as well. In 2006, I got round to realising that they were puppets of the band U2 after watching the video of the U2 song Sweetest Thing. making up people with heads of cartoon characters on them had been a part of my life for several years, until 2007 when I was 20, I got out of it because I realised that it wouldn’t actually work because they wouldn’t have been proper human beings, and that they were wearing false heads, and it would be too surreal for me now if people had false heads on them unless it was for a fancy dress party.
Another thing I used to like doing is watching stand-
I got six stand-
From 2001 to 2017, I also used to be interested in this thing which I called my ‘Thirty Year Thing’. Back in September 2001, there was this programme on called ‘The Old Grey Whistle Test At 30’ which was to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the commissioning of The Old Grey Whistle Test which began in 1971 and ended in 1987, the year I was born. My Mum recorded it for me on a blank VHS while I was in bed on nights when I had to get up for school when we used to have a video machine.
In 2003, I watched this other series related to the programme called ‘The Whistle Test Years’, and it was when it was repeated as it was first on the year before. The first episode of the series which I saw when I was staying with my Nan and her partner in February 2003 was the one that featured clips from 1973, one of the things that contributed to my ‘Thirty Years After’. The first episode that I missed featured clips from the years 1971 and 1972, as ‘The Old Grey Whistle Test’ started in the September of 1971.
The series contained a total of fourteen episodes. The penultimate episode featured performances from the years 1984 and 1985, and the last episode of the series featured performances from the years 1986 and 1987. To this day, I still remember every single performance from that 14-
I associate every one of them through the years with the year that it was 30 years after those performances, and all the people in them at the times of those performances with those years. Some of them had died by those respective years. The last of the 1979 performances that I associate with 2009 is actually a piece of animation which Bob Harris described as “striking”.
Though I wouldn’t watch every one of them on YouTube, I thought I’d include as many links to each of them as possible on this page as to display how I felt about life over the last sixteen years about life as I would each and every one of them that were originally performed on ‘The Old Grey Whistle Test’ 30 years before how I was feeling about my life at those respective points.
I haven’t been able to include every single one of them on this page mint condition because firstly not all of them are on YouTube, and secondly some of them are on YouTube, but have been blocked as a result of copyright grounds.
A 1971 Performance That I Associate With 2001
The other 1971 performance that I associate with 2001 is ‘Fog On The Tyne’ by Lindisfarne, only I can’t include it in this bit because it’s one of those videos that is on YouTube, but is blocked at the same time.
The 1972 Performances That I Associate With 2002
The 1973 Performances That I Associate With 2003
The 1974 Performances That I Associate With 2004
The 1975 Performances That I Associate With 2005
The 1976 Performances That I Associate With 2006
The 1977 Performances That I Associate With 2007
The 1978 Performances That I Associate With 2008
The 1979 Performances That I Associate With 2009
The 1980 Performances That I Associate With 2010
The 1981 Performances That I Associate With 2011
The 1982 Performances That I Associate With 2012
Clint Eastwood & General Saint -
The 1983 Performances That I Associate With 2013
The 1984 Performances That I Associate With 2014
The 1985 Performances That I Associate With 2015
The 1986 Performances That I Associate With 2016
The 1987 Performances That I Associate With 2017
Sinead O’ Connor -
My ‘Thirty Year Thing’ is actually ending at the very end of 2017, which will give me a sense of major relief as I felt I’ve had no choice with the things I felt forced by my autism to think about since September 2001. As a result of that, my ‘Thirty Year Thing’ is actually no longer important to me.
I also have a plan for what I will want to do with my life from New Year’s Day 2018 onwards after my ‘Thirty Year Thing’ ends just at the very point where 2017 draws to a close. I started work on this piece of writing on Thursday the 19th of October 2017 which I am still working and am planning to give my Mum to read in my own time.
It’s a good thing I won’t have anything to associate 2018 with that won’t have been of my own choice after my ‘Thirty Year Thing’ ends just after the very end of this year, or any future years after that. I didn’t so much associate anything at all with before 2001. I feel in this context that if there is a God, and I’m an agnostic apparently, I feel that he might have had a plan for me in that sense.
The Old Grey Whistle Test’s run ended on New Year’s Eve 2017 with a live New Year’s Eve special. Material included Hotel California by The Eagles live from 1977, and Bat Out Of Hell by Meat Loaf. I’ve never really thoroughly enjoyed having my ‘Thirty Year Thing’ in my life, and so I can’t wait till the very end of 2017 when it comes to an end so that I can start fresh in my own right.