Monday, 26 March 2012

Repeatable Moments of Acute Embarressment Number 1

In which John Cleese and I do an Involuntary Recreation of the Classic Cheese Shop Sketch in the Covent Garden Branch of Waterstones

I was recently criticised for a failure to be emotionally forthcoming in my social media. "You never tell us about yourself," someone said. "You need to write more about yourself, your hopes, your fears and the emotional moments from your past."

To that end I now provide the first of a series of the embarrassing moments from my past that I deem to be repeatable.

For those of you who have never sampled the delights of this sketch it can be found here on YouTube.

I'm not very good with celebrities, I often don't recognise them beyond a vague sensation that I should know them from somewhere which has given me an unwarranted sense of superiority over the star-struck common ruck of humanity. I'm a trendy Londoner, I say confidently to myself, I don't fall for all that faux celebrity glamour. I'm as good as any man!

So you can imagine it was acutely damaging to my self-image when I looked up from Till One (where I was working) to find oh-my-god-it's-John-fucking-Cleese-oh-my-god looming over me and immediately burst into a sweat.

Mr Cleese approached the till and explained that he was in the area and decided that what he fancied was a book and that he had spied our emporium of the literary arts and hurried in. He didn't really but if he had at least I would have been forewarned.

He requested a book, I'm not going to say the title because the confidence between a customer and a bookseller is a sacred trust, let's just say it was a perfectly reasonable book to ask for. I looked it up on the computer and found that we didn't have it in stock. Regretfully I informed Mr Cleese of our deficiency and he said "No matter," and requested a second book.

We didn't have that either and I think you all know where this is going. By the fourth non-available book I was just waiting for the question - "Are you sure that this a bookshop?" to which I would have been forced, by statute(1), to reply; "Yes sir, finest in the country." I dread to think what would have happened next.

Fortunately I was saved by the intervention of my manageress who took over at the till and allowed me to flee at the first opportunity.

(1) Compulsory Repetition of Monty Python Quotes Act (1979)


snail said...

Flowery Twats eh?

Happy Valley said...

I was once inspected (in the nicest possible way) by Mountbatten when I was in the RN and kissed and cooed at by Pearl Carr (who?) when I was a baby. Other than that, the famous (and grammar) have always avoided me . . . Lucky or what?