Wiffle Lever To Full!

Daleks, Death Stars and Dreamy Sci-Fi Nostalgia…

If I Were Richard Carpenter, And You Were A Lady…

Well, I’ve had a very strange and wonderful weekend. I went down to Legend, the Robin Of Sherwood convention, on Saturday – proudly letting 150 people in medieval tabards and chain mail loose on Nottingham city centre. And Nottingham city centre, commendably, didn’t bat an eyelid.

I’d toyed with the idea of taking the Cursed Robin Of Sherwood dolls with me, and in the end came up with a compromise. I won them in the charity auction at the same event in 2006, and since then they’ve blighted my life – they’ve destroyed two cars, one PC, a broadband modem and a shelf. I didn’t want to release them all from their imprisonment at the back of the spare room cupboard, but I temporarily liberated Nasir and placed him in secure storage – in a tightly-sealed container whose previous prisoners had included a selection of Spearmint-flavoured dog chews. In fact, here he is, in his bondage…

Don’t look into his eyes!

Anyway, I took him with me and read out a few extracts from the book to a really nice crowd. I was utterly terrified, but they laughed in all the right places, stayed quiet in all the right places, and even Kate – the lovely tarot card reader that I described as being Irish with green eyes when in fact she’s Scottish with blue eyes – didn’t seem to mind too much. Thanks, Kate!

What nearly put me off my stride, though, was halfway through when I noticed Richard Carpenter enter the room. Richard’s one of my writing heroes – not only did he create Robin Of Sherwood, but he’s also responsible for Catweazle. Catweazle! I still watch it on DVD, and I want a little non-cursed woolly Geoffrey Bayldon for my next dog chew jar. So it was a bit disconcerting when I realised Richard was going to hear me reading the bit about being hit in the testicles with a big stick by my best friend Doug Simpson. We were 11 at the time, and pretending to be Friar Tuck and Little John.

But he was laughing! He was! Richard Carpenter was laughing at my jokes. And afterwards, I queued up to get Nasir’s jar signed by him, and his lovely wife Annabelle ‘Mad Mab’ Lee and – bestill my beating heart – Mark Ryan, who played Nasir himself. And the esteemed Mr C told me that he’d really enjoyed my readings, that I wrote really well, and that it was all incredibly atmospheric. And I thought I was going to faint. So thanks, Richard – you really don’t know how much that means.  

And then Mark signed my jar with the immortal missive ‘Bollocks! Let me out you nobby!’ (as you can probably see in the picture) and my life was complete.

Thanks to everyone I met and who made me feel exceptionally welcome on Saturday – nothing is forgotten. Nothing is ever forgotten. 

Although I nearly left my memory stick in the official convention PC.


  Doll Knitter wrote @

Glad to hear that Nasir got out for the weekend. I heard from Mark Ryan on Monday that he had seen the doll!

Sorry if they have caused you problems. I didn’t realise they were cursed when I knitted them.


  bobfischer wrote @

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaagj! Begone, you denizen of the Black Arts!!!!!

Seriously, they’re amazing dolls and I love them to bits. And thanks for providing me with one of my favourite bits of the book! I’m so pleased you’ve got in touch. 🙂

However, they must never be allowed to walk abroad! Or anywhere in this country either, for that matter.

  Doll Knitter wrote @

No problem see you at TellyNation :@)

  bobfischer wrote @

Oh yes! Look forward to it.

  piquante wrote @

piquante says : I absolutely agree with this !

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