Ragged Clown

It's just a shadow you're seeing that he's chasing…


What’s the buzz?

In the third year at grammar school, Mr Gooden took the whole class to go see Jesus Christ Superstar on stage in London. My life — and my relationship with Mr Gooden — was a bit complicated at that stage and I really didn’t want to go.

I didn’t know if I was going to get into trouble so I had my mum write me an excuse-letter. She wrote the snottiest letter any parent ever wrote to a teacher and she told me not to give it to him unless he gave me a hard time. He didn’t give me a hard time so I didn’t give it to him. But the letter stayed in my pocket and I forgot about it.

A couple of weeks later, I was off sick and my mum wrote me a sick note and I put it in the pocket of my blazer. When I handed in my sick note, I handed in the wrong one!! Mr Gooden went mad. He gave me a hard, hard time. Then he called my mother and gave her a hard time too.

That was the day that, as in the Doctor Who episode, I turned left instead of right. I decided to leave school at the first possible opportunity and join the Navy instead of going to Cambridge which was my previous plan. I pretty much shut down at school and couldn’t wait for it all to be over.

Anyway, fast forward forty years and Jesus Christ Superstar is my absolute favourite musical. It moves me so. And I’m going to see it tonight with my lovely neighbours, Robert and Sharon, and my lovely wife at the Bristol Hippodrome tonight.

I’ve been changed, yes really changed
In these past few days
When I’ve seen myself
I seem like someone else

More adventures with Mr Gooden here: