It’s Timmeh! How utterly brilliant!

February 1, 2007

Timmy Mallett…..genius, artist, raconteur and sensual lover.  A well remembered and loved entertainer of our childhood.  Still performs the occasional gigs for student unions, has his own production company Brilliant TV and still plays with his pinky-punky.  Who can forget his cockatiel Magic, with it’s innovative “cage cam” – what better person to invite to a B3ta bash?  So I wrote to him……

Dear Mr Mallett,

Firstly let me just say how sorely you are missed from our television sets.  The shirts that contravened the Geneva Convention, the catchphrase “Bleurgh”, your small pink-tipped tool and your Magic Cock Cam™ are some of my strongest memories of an idyllic childhood, second only to losing my virginity at the age of 9 to the neighbour’s daschund, Charlie, with his silky fur and sensual tongue.

What Saturday was complete without the Wide Awake Club? I would lie there for hours, giggling with mirth at your antics, laughing uproariously at Tommy Boyd’s hair and furtively touching myself to Michaela Strachan.
Then it got better, ITV unloaded that humourless piece of rodent scum Roland The Rat off to the BBC paving the way for you, Timmy, to come into my life everyday courtesy of Wacaday.  It was, of course, “Utterly Brilliant!” My life was lost in a whirl of hammers, laughing and bright colours – not in fact dissimilar to many of Peter Sutcliffe’s victims…

Anyway, after the show, I would lie there, satiated and spent, too comfortable to do anything until I was rudely brought back to full awareness by the Why don’t you? theme, at which point I would utter a panicked scream and flee downstairs for breakfast.

So Timmy, I write to you now with a request: I am a regular poster/contributor to B3ta.com, a art/comedy website defined by the Guardian as a “puerile digital arts community” (but that’s the Guardian for you Timmy, they won’t be happy until we’re all tree-hugging sandal wearing lesbians.  Except for those who are already  lesbians, they’ll be expected to plug up their genitals and get down to the serious business of running the country).  At various times we b3tans meet up at various hostelries around the country to have a few drinks and a laugh or so, and I thought that I would surprise them by trying to arrange a little bit of entertainment for the evening.  What could be finer, thought I to myself, whilst stroking my goatee in a thoughtful manner, than having the wonderful Mr Mallett there for the night.  We could play “Mallett’s Mallet”, we could go “bleurgh”, we could finally find someone with a slightly worse dress sense than ourselves.

I see from your website that you still do the occasional gig (in fact, I shall be doing my utmost to see you at Chicago’s in Norwich in April) and without a thought for my own personal safety, would really like to hire/book your talents for the evening.  Do you charge by the hour or by the night? Do you expect dinner and drinks as well? Would you consider performing a gig for us?  I cannot tell you how much we would all enjoy it.

I hope to hear back from you soon Timmy, your fans miss you.

Kindest Regards,

Marc “I miss you, Charlie” Crane

Now we wait……..


Bob Carolgees – He’s the greatest! He’s fantastic! Wherever there is danger he is there..

January 30, 2007

Okay…on with the mails. Still no reply from the Chuckle Brothers or Mr Harris, but we shall carry on regardless (and other songs by Beautiful South). Today I wrote to Mr Bob Carolgees – star of TISWAS, colleague of Cilla – famed for being buried elbow deep up a dog’s anus. I could not find a booking agent for him, but discovered that he now owns and runs a candle shop in Frodsham, Cheshire – so I wrote to him there.


Dear Mr Carolgees,

Firstly let apologise for writing to you via your candle shop, but I must have searched online for nearly four whole minutes looking for a booking contact for you when I stumbled upon the website for your Wax-based Lighting Emporium. May I just congratulate you on not only your entertainment skills, but also your sound business acumen? Sure some people may scoff and say that candles are an obsolete technology and no longer needed – but we know the truth don’t we, Bob. As World War Three comes to its destructive end shortly after it began, the fallout settling upon the screaming populace of multiple countries, the EMP having wiped out all electronics globally – there we shall be, Bob, you and me basking in the romantic flickering of a 8” Church candle, maybe sniffing the delicate fragrance of blueberry from a scented oil bowl, and eating our tinned produce which has been lightly braised on a small ring of tea-lights. We know the truth, Bob – let our wicks, like our dreams, always burn brightly.

Anyway – to the point of this email, while I fully understand that you’re busy man, certainly I would never have the discipline to run my own candle shop, I was wondering if you still undertook the occasional entertainment booking, and if so a rough estimate of cost. My colleagues and I are regular contributors to a popular art/comedy based website, a “puerile digital arts community” if you happen to read the Guardian (which I’m sure you don’t, Bob, you have a scrotum) and we regularly meet up from all corners of our green and pleasant land to exchange gossip, advice and on occasion, body fluids. I have taken it upon myself to try and procure us an evening’s entertainment, and I could think of nothing finer than to be rolling in the aisles while you and you faithful companion Spit regale us with anecdotes of your times on TISWAS, and Surprise Surprise and what secret alchemy is needed to make an Advent candle burn for 24 days.

There is no fixed date for this gig yet, as we are willing to work with you on this, all we ask is that it’s a Saturday night as this is most convenient for my fellow web-heads. Please say you will Bob, please. We need you back on our screens Bob, you’re too damn good for candles – they don’t deserve you like we do….they don’t love you Bob. They just say that so you will sleep with them.

I hope to hear back from you soon Mr Carolgees, we’d love to have you for the evening. If you can’t make it however, I would appreciate a reply in the negative so at least I know where we stand. I hope you can though Bob, otherwise the others want to try and get the Chuckle Brothers who, to be honest make my balls shrink a bit.

I await your reply,

Kind regards,

Marc Crane.

PS: Bob, I LOVED your Hellman’s mayonnaise adverts back in the 80’s. Even to this day as I scoop thick wads of creamy white goo off my chin I think to myself….HA! this is one time that Bob doesn’t advocate spitting.


As always, I shall keep you posted.


Keith Harris, God of entertainers…

January 29, 2007

Following on the from the Chuckle Bros, I have decided to email Keith Harris’ agent.  Once again, as soon as I get a reply, I’ll let you know.

Dear Sir.

I am writing to you to enquire about the possibility of booking the legend that is Keith Harris, along with those two playful scamps Orville and Cuddles.  I am a member of an extremely popular website (described by the Guardian as a puerile digital arts community). Our members and contributors regularly meet up several times a year to chat, gossip and drink ourselves into our geek related oblivion.  However, we have recently discussed the option of hiring an entertainer for the evening and Keith Harris was top of our list after Jar Jar Binks, who is apparently filming a Tampax commercial in Tijuana.

I actually saw Keith Harris live at Cromer Pier  when I was a child, and even now have warm memories of that day.  In fact every single time I get to bounce a bird on my knee, I flash back to Keith….his bouffant hair, his leather jacket gleaming in the spotlights, the warmth of his hand and the scent of Old Spice and a wave of pure pleasure runs through me.

Anyway I digress,  the point of this email would be to discover if Keith would be available to perform a small gig for a group of perhaps 20-30 adults aged about 18 – 40.  We all remember Keith with pure glee and would love to relive our childhood a bit.   Who can forget the sheer brilliance that was Orville’s Song – one of the first records I ever bought.  The lyrics touched a generation of disaffected children.  “I wish I could fly, right up to the sky but I can’t” – these words showed us the angst, futility and despair that is life in a way that The Smiths could not begin to touch.  And then Keith, his voice warm, kind and paternal spake unto Orville those magic words: “you can” – oh how our hearts filled with joy when we realised nothing was impossible.  We could hope, we could dream, WE COULD FLY!  This feeling was to stay with us throughout our teens giving us reason to go on, and in the case of my good friend Matthew those words along with some pharmacological experimentation meant that YES – he could fly, albeit it briefly and downwards.

We have no date or venue planned as yet.  We were just wondering about the cost of hiring Mr Harris and his Fluffy Associates for the evening.  We can work with him regarding date, although a Saturday would be most convenient for us.

Kindest Regards,

Marc “I hate that duck” Crane.


The Chuckle Brothers: It seemed a good idea at the time.

January 29, 2007

Following a couple of drunken coversations with my fellow b3tans ThatNikonFella, and SugarSpunSister regarding B3ta Bashes and what we could do to make one a bit different, we joked around with the idea of hiring an entertainer for the evening. Someone cheesy, someone we would remember from our childhoods. I must admit that the thought of getting a kids entertainer to perform before a load of pissed up web-geeks touched me in a way I’ve not been touched since Great-Uncle Pete said it was “our little secret”. So I decided to email various kids entertainers, or their booking agents, and see just how much they would cost, and how much I could get away with in the email. First up – The Chuckle Brothers!

The following is a copy of the email sent to them (or rather their customer services) on Sat 27th Jan, 2007.

Dear Sir/Madam,

As a long time fan of the Chuckle Brothers – even now hearing “to me to you” sends me spiralling back into nostalgic childhood memories of sitting on my granddad’s knee, watching TV, trying to get comfortable (that man always had something hard in his pocket. Tools, I suppose. He had very rough hands.) – I was wondering if Mr and Mr Chuckle, or Paul and Barry if I may be so bold, also undertook private bookings. As a long time member of an art/comedy website, many of my fellow members meet up for drinks around the country from time to time and we were wondering if we could possibly hire the Chuckle Bros for an evening and if so, how much it would cost. We would be a mainly adult audience, at least physically not mentally and would dearly love to relive our childhood again. Apart from that bit with the uncle and the secret.

I would expect there may be some good natured heckling, and wondered if possibly Paul and Barry (god, I love calling them that) would consider making their act slightly more mature. Nothing serious or degrading, if I wanted to be smacked in the face by a large pink/purple topped tool, I’d ask Timmy Mallet, or perhaps my Granddad again.

I look forward to hearing back from you.

Kindest Regards,


Have heard nothing back as yet…..will keep you posted.