Tuesday, 5 May 2009
You'll like this...not a lot
Another old blog repost, this time about magician Paul Daniels.
A few years ago, to alleviate the boredom of a particularly grinding day job, I started contacting minor celebrities from fake email accounts set up in the names of various work colleagues.
I would email as them to say that I was a massive fan and then ask for a signed photo to be sent to the desk location and office address of that person.
I don’t know why I chose this particular outlet for my boredom. I suppose it was just an occasional, amusing distraction to watch people opening their post and finding, in addition to the usual fare, a big, glossy, apparently unsolicited picture of Barry from Eastenders.
During this phase, I went to Paul Daniels' website to request an autographed photo for a particularly unpleasant boss.
(He deserved nothing less than Paul Daniels)
Incidentally that year I also nominated him for ‘Britain’s Worst Boss’, and some Channel 5 researchers phoned him up to discuss his iffy behaviour.
Sadly he declined to go on.
Anyway, I looked around the site and when I clicked on ‘request an autograph’ I was dismayed to see that Paul Daniels charged £4 for them.
James and I decided to email him (we were a bit drunk)
It was about 2 in the morning but incredibly Paul Daniels was up and at ‘em and replied immediately:
Us Hello I would ask for an autograph but apparently you charge £4 which is hardly good value for money.
Why don't you learn some good tricks like David Blaine? He is miles better than you.
All my love
Daniels ‘Why don't you learn to do some good tricks like David Blaine?’
The reason is that I don't like using camera tricks and editing to fool people.
I like to use skill to baffle them.
If you like what he apparently does, however, then that is fine and I hope you have a great life.
Us I never said I liked David Blaine, I just said I thought he was much better than you.
More than anything I respect the fact that he has never had to resort to appearing on a Channel 5 reality show and nearly getting himself beaten up by Vanilla Ice.
Still, if you like to baffle people with your skills then that is fine and I hope you have a great life.
Seriously though, can I have a signed autograph? My daughter is a fan.
Daniels This conversation is destined to go nowhere as your responses come from lack of knowledge.
I did not 'nearly get beaten up' by Vanilla. He backed down and away when I apparently went for him.
The Farm was told to us as being an educational show and it wasn't until we were on it that we found out it was designed as yet another attempt to humiliate celebs.
I do TV shows that interest me.
I wonder why Blaine, who now has vanished from the scene and has told at least one show that he doesn't do magic, did nothing in a box for a month and then finished up doing less?
See what I mean?
The conversation can go nowhere.
Send me your daughter's name and address.
After seeing how easy it was to annoy the Daniels I got Viz to print the following Letterbocks entry:
'Not a lot' magician Paul Daniels is very easy to wind up. Simply email him at firstname.lastname@example.org saying he is not as good as David Blaine then sit back.
Apparently a fair few people tried this out, and ultimately Paul Daniels posted the following statement on his website:
I have never really understood the comic known as VIZ. I have always found the 'comedy' puerile and moronic. 'Oh look Daddy... isn't that funny? They use naughty words.' 'Well, it is not so funny when you grow up son.' About two weeks ago, apparently, they published my email address (available to anyone who searches the internet) and begged their readers to write to me to tell me that David Blaine was better. I think it sort of back fired. I got more mail in praise than condemning me and to all it gave me the chance to publicise my internet shop! Sales have gone up! Thank you VIZ, but, I have to say that I was very surprised at how few, in total, wrote to me. Perhaps people have grown up and stopped reading the rubbish. I got far more women offering me views of their boobies!
Speaking of boobies and Viz, the editors received this email recently:
Have any of your other readers been wondering if Christina Martin has nice tits?
I hope not.
Although I am aware that people on the Viz Facebook forum have been wondering if I’m fit (click on the picture to enlarge it):
And concluding that I’m 'not the best'.
Of course the feminist in me is outraged at the fact that whatever women do in life, even the ‘nothing to do with your looks’ arena of writing, people will generally ignore it in favour of scrutinising your attractiveness…
...But mostly I found it quite funny.
As I did these other emails received by the editors:
Can I just use the pages of your esteemed magazine to declare my love for funnygirl and Viz contributor Christina Martin. She doesn't know me yet but I shall be living in the bushes opposite her house from now on.
I have recently noticed that a Christina Martin is a very funny contributor to your 'hilarious' mag. I have decided on the basis of her sense of humour that she would very much like to go out with me. Please forward the lucky girl’s contact details to me. I'm taking a big chance I know as she may only have a lovely personality. Even so, she deserves a chance.
And on that note, here’s a shameless plug for the latest Viz annual, which contains mine and James’ contributions from the past couple of years.