This isn’t a review site, but I like to tell you what I’ve been doing and I mention the Live Theatre on here quite a lot. On Friday evening Heather and I went to see a new play by award-winning writer Paddy Campbell. The Day of the Flymo examines the circumstances surrounding the point at which children are removed from their parents or guardians, and placed into care with social services. In creating the play, Paddy Campbell drew on his experiences of working in a children’s care home. The cast list is particularly relevant to this blog because the lead role was taken by 13-year-old Kalem Patterson. Kalem is an impressive young man of immense talent and comic timing, and the programme notes tell me that he is from Ryton. There’s a scene where, in a state of frenzy, he attacks a cushion with a knife. So realistic was he, that his performance had me shifting uncomfortably in my seat. I wondered if maybe something backstage had genuinely upset Kalem, and considered the possibility that he might not be acting at all. When Kalem Patterson is a big name in the next decade, kindly remember that you heard about him from me first. Click on the links below for details of the other wonderful actors. Tezney Mulroy Sophie Pitches Akemnji Ndifornyen Jill Dellow I know Jill because she’s the niece of a close family friend, but apart from TV adverts this is the first time I’ve seen her perform. I’ll make sure that it isn’t the last. Sadly the run of Day of the Flymo ended on Saturday evening, but I have no doubt that it’ll be back.
I’ve started to turn into my mother. This is troubling, because Heather is threatening to divorce me because of it. My Mum (to put it mildly) gets very anxious about her health, and she talks about it constantly. My own small run of ill health makes me realise that perhaps I’ve been a bit hard on her, because I now see that while other people’s ailments are desperately boring, there is nothing in the world quite so riveting as one’s own medical procedures/illnesses/injuries. I’m particularly fond of injuries. About 8 years ago I was on a three-month training course down in Durham. Aspects of it were quite physical, and someone accidentally hit me over the head with an iron bar – necessitating the insertion of several stitches in Durham University Hospital. One of my trainers contacted me on the evening of this mishap, and said that over the next two days of lessons, he would be covering a topic with which I was already overly familiar, owing to a previous role I’d had with the same organisation. Therefore he suggested that I remain at home and wait for the swelling to go down. No chance. I could see no point whatsoever in having a black closed eye, purple bruising, stitches and a bandage, and then staying indoors where no one could see them all. You can bet your life that I went to work the next day, and continued thereafter, to make myself visible in public as much as I possibly could. My wounds healed with progress that was disappointingly rapid. I’ve had a few collective ailments of late, the most pressing of which is not visible to the naked eye, and so, quite frankly, I’ve lost interest in it. Not so my knee. I first realised I had a problem about six months ago; when I discovered I wasn’t able to bend it properly. I put this down to nothing more than a pulled muscle. It’s continued to niggle, and then it got a lot worse, and finally (and to my immense satisfaction) the joint doubled in size. Even though it’s only April, I am of course wearing my shorts. My doctor is sending me for a scan. I’m certainly getting full value from the NHS at the minute. My last couple of blogs have been a bit short because I haven’t really done anything or been anywhere. Normal service is about to be resumed though, so please stay with me.