Wiffle Lever To Full!

Daleks, Death Stars and Dreamy Sci-Fi Nostalgia…

Extracts from Bob’s 1984 Diary… Volume 61

Thursday 1st March 1984

Woke up at 7.50 and got up at 8.10. First at school I started a painting of a Keyhole for language, and at 10.10 We went swimming. Then when we were at the baths, first we could have a muck about, then we had to swim 4 widths. After that we had to do backstroke and at 11.10 We came back and at 12.00 I had dinner.

After dinner I played Cricket then I went in and did a poem about keyholes! At 3.15 I came home and played on the videopac, and at 5.00 I had tea. At 5.15 I watched Happy days, then at 5.40 I watched the adventure game.

At 6.20 I played on the Videopac, at 6.40 I watched Doctor Who, and at 7.5 I played on the Videopac again. After that I wrote some of the Jewel, and after playing on the videopac again, I went to bed at 9.30.

I remember my Keyhole Poem! Well, alright a tiny bit of it. It started…

When you look through a keyole,
What do you see?
You could see almost anything,
Providing there’s no key!


It then went on to list a plethora of bizarre, surreal scenes that may be viewed through a keyhole (You could see a man with head in a bowl/Of hot steaming soup, looking for his bread roll) before finishing with the same four opening lines.

Imagine Bob Dylan’s ‘A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall’ if Dylan had grown up on Teesside reading Fighting Fantasy books and watching Tucker’s Luck instead of faffing about in Greenwich Village changing the course of cultural history. 


Although, naturally, I wasn’t averse to a spot of that either. You might remember (especially if you’ve read Diary Entry Volume 50)  mine, Doug’s and Ozzie’s attempts to cast off the dreary doldrums of Levendale Primary School and launch ourselves into pop stardom as top pop-punk trio Titchie Richie and the Weirdos. Well, with the half term holidays now well and truly over, progress was cracking on apace.

If only we could decide who was going to be Titchie Richie. Naturally, given my shy, self-conscious personality, it was obvious to me that I should be the STAR OF THE BAND and take all the glory, credit and cash. So I wanted to be Titchie Richie. I was only hampered in this ambition by two minor drawbacks. 1) I wasn’t particularly ‘titchie’, 2) I wasn’t called Richie.

However Ozzie, being a good couple of inches shorter than Doug or myself, only fell foul of ONE of these criteria. ‘Ozzie should definitely be Titchie Richie,’ demanded Doug, slamming his first down on his Topic work and causing me to wobble dangerously across my Keyhole painting.


Ozzie, throwing his hat (or rather his hair) into the ring, curled his lip in a way that we’d only ever previously seen Cliff Richard attempt, and fussed up his blond, curly barnet into the most astonishing, towering quiff. The job, as far as they were concerned, was his.

‘But I’ve got the voice!’ I demanded, knowing full well that my own hair was nowhere near wiry enough to withstand such vigorous treatment. As if to prove this, I launched into a full-blooded rendition of Slade’s ‘My Oh My’ that rattled the pots of powder paint lodged precariously at the top of Mrs Keasey’s Special Cupboard, and threatened – amazingly – to shatter Christopher Herbert’s smelly Shatterproof ruler.


‘YOU?!?!?’ laughed white-tie-clad farm lad Paul Frank, owner of a fine tenor baritone (or something) and everyone’s hot favourite to land the plum lead role in our summertime production of Joseph And His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.

‘Pffffft, you can’t sing for bloody toffee’.

And so, you’ll note, very little is written in my diary about the rest of my afternoon activities. This is because I was sulking at being usurped in my own band, and didn’t emerge from my mood until Mrs Mulhearn giggled at my Keyhole Poem and said it was ‘very funny indeed’.


I imagine Bob Dylan suffered from similar setbacks in his early career. Still, The Adventure Game will have perked me up, especially as one of the guests was Janet ‘Tegan’ Fielding, recently departed from her three-year stint in Doctor Who. I’d been missing Tegan for a couple of weeks now, so the chance to see her trying to decipher Rongad’s increasingly hilarious and infectious backwards-speaking (‘Olleh, olleh’) came as a welcome tonic.

Oh, and Part Three of Planet Of Fire. It had The Master and Kamelion in it, but really I was just killing time now until Peter Davison’s regeneration came around…



  Dr. Giles Parcel wrote @

I, too, know a poem about a keyhole. Well it is a Limerick actually. I’d reproduce it here but I’m afraid it is (too use a scientific term) too bloody filthy.
On a completely unrelated note, I’m willing to bet that Janet Fielding didn’t arrive on Arg dressed quite like that. It would have made the Rangdo jump out of his flowerpot!

  bobfischer wrote @

She didn’t, sadly. As far as I can recall she spent the entire programme rolling her eyes and sighing. Which is, of course, the kind of behaviour that made me fall head over heels in love with Tegan.

I can still do a cracking impression of the Rangdo. I might film it and put it on the blog this week.

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