Marc tagged me. So here are 5 interesting, but little known things about me:
- My grandfather completed an apprenticeship as a boat builder but could only find work as an itinerant coal trimmer. He and my grandmother lived in a house without a fridge, inside toilet or bathroom, washing in a tin bath filled using saucepans in front of the fire. On the odd occasion I think I might not be enjoying my occupation I only have to think at least I didn't have to line up for the promise of a day inside a boat, up to my waist in coal, shoveling. He died when I was 8 of pneumoconiosis.
- I've never met my father, or indeed the man who was married to my mother for 10 years. For all I know they may or may not be the same person. This has never bothered me, but now I have children of my own, questions are being asked.
- My nickname at school was "Meat" and then later "Errol" and friends from those days still call me "E" and address my mother as "Mrs E". The lack of any really obvious reason behind these names tell you more about my school friends than my physicality.
- I knew I was onto something with my wife when we put our TinTin books on the same shelf and realised together we had a complete collection, the only duplicates being the same book in different languages.
- I never feel at all festive until I see or hear a A Christmas Carol during which I'll suffer from extreme and involuntary lacrimation. Last night we took the kids to see a cheesy production in a tiny hall which involved audience participation. Not quite Legs Akimbo, but you get the idea. I blubbed like a newborn when Scrouge ordered the turkey.
Now the tricky part. As much as I love a good meme, this one does feel a little like a chain letter. On the other hand it was fun to write and could be interesting to study later. So with little thought, absolutely no expectation especially given the time of year, but with the aim of spreading the meme more widely, I'll tag Jonathan, Hugo, Danny, Otu and the amazing JP Rangaswami (go read his blog!).