All things considered, last week was a perfectly normal week until Friday came along. Abbi and Paul showed off their newly vegetarian (but still reassuringly delicious) cooking with a mini dinner party on Tuesday: all quite respectable. Went to see Mark Thomas at the Tricycle on Wednesday for my mum’s birthday: OK, maybe a (brilliant and hilarious) stand-up routine about the West Bank isn’t a typical outing for every family, but this is North West London after all. It was only when Friday arrived that things got properly surreal: a cocktail of nerves, sadness, reunion and celebration which took a turn for the even weirder and culminated in Geek Corner turning unexpectedly militant!
But first things first. Friday was Jimmy’s funeral, at which I’d been asked to read out my post in his memory. To be honest, I’d been nervous beforehand that this could all seem like a bit of an imposition… as if the Queens Park community, through sheer mass of numbers, could be taking up something that rightfully belonged to his family. Thankfully, I really don’t think this was a problem – partly because when I listened to everyone else who spoke from all parts of his life it all sounded so right. We were all definitely talking about the same marvellous person.
Funerals like this are odd, though, because the sadness of the occasion is mixed with the joy of being reunited with lots and lots of people you once saw every day. Holly and I got a lift there together, and pretty soon we were having the same arguments we used to have during A Level English, which was sweet and lovely. And the pub afterwards was packed with all sorts of students and teachers from different eras, which means there’s so much to catch up on… especially after a couple of beers, when I got around to admonishing my old PE teacher for denying me the cliché of utterly miserable PE lessons. My ride home was kindly provided by Sue Wales with Alison Hook, Luna Rupchand and Chris Moore sitting in the back: now that’s just plain wacky, like someone’s compressed my entire school life and turned it into a bizarre roadtrip movie.
So, an odd mix of emotions, rounded off with an evening of Geek Corner Plus. (Geek Corner Plus? Geek Corner Extra? Geek Corner with Special Guest Star Amber? You decide.) We watched Hercules in New York, which was obviously terrible, and then I tried to get us all to watch Made In Chelsea as an obviously terrible follow-up. I hadn’t bargained, however, on having to fight Saoirse for the remote: an experience which ended up with said remote smashing into my face followed by kindly and helpful siblings scurrying into the kitchen to fetch tissues and ice for the bleeding
(I do feel bad about telling this story, because it was obviously an accident and hardly a big one. It was just such an amusing one: the jokes about Saoirse gearing up for violent revolution all write themselves! Rest assured, future employers \ boyfriends \ secret service operatives, that she’s not actually violent.)