I had an e-mail yesterday from someone who'd just come across this piece from two and a half years ago, and wanted to share the following views:
"i would just like to inform you that your website is shit, you are a prick and i hope you rot in hell. you are a disgraceful person, as someone who decides to have a go at children on their petty little web page (probably becdause you don't have a real job or a life at all outside of your bedroom and your right hand) is someone who should just do everyone a favour and die."
True, but at least I can use capital letters. And besides, I don't have time to have a go at children - there are too many adults out there. Talking of which...
... it's Alex James of Blur!
If you're wondering why I'm not in the picture, it's because Lisa took it. She claims she didn't realise I wanted to be in the photo too, and her decision to cut me out of the shot had nothing to do with her fancying Alex James for the past ten years and wanting to forget I exist.
Anyhoo, last night's cheese-making lecture was mostly fairly dull, but then I'm not in love with the speaker. Maybe I'm just the jealous type, but I found Alex's frequent casual references to the aeroplanes he's bought, the parties he's been to, and the fact that he used to have "an embarrassing wreck of a car" (which turned out to be a BMW) slightly grating. Especially when he went on to claim that if he wasn't selling cheese to Harvey Nichols, he might not be able to pay the bills on his 200 acre estate.
As for his friendship with Damien Hirst, my ears are still ringing from the constant clang of that name hitting the floor.
But most irritating of all was our hostess for the evening, Miranda Sawyer. She began by announcing that she and Alex "go way back", which was the problem really. Instead of asking him questions and letting him speak, she seemed to think they were mates having a natter down the pub, and constantly interrupted him with her (unsuccessful) attempts to be funny. I could have slapped her. If we'd had better seats.
But the good news is we eventually made it out of there, and I succeeded in getting Alex to sign a book for Lisa. She'd have done it herself, but sadly the official autograph queue proved too confusing a concept for her, and she found herself on the wrong side of the crash barrier, unable to get past the burly security guard. I offered to distract him while she ducked underneath the cordon to join me at the head of the queue, but she claimed she was too pregnant.
So having intended to take a photo of Lisa and Alex together, I hastily changed my plans and we agreed on a quick swap - me receiving £16.99 for a book, and Lisa getting my camera (which is worth slightly less). I then handed the book to Alex, leaned right in, turned to the camera and smiled. I must admit, I did think she appeared to be aiming in completely the wrong direction, but I was too polite to say anything. If only she'd been a child - I'd have had a go immediately.