My friendship with Michael (platonic I repeat once more - for the benefit of an email from someone called Terry in Burbankca wherever that is. We are both hetero. Sorry Terry) has sailed into rather choppy waters following a row yesterday evening.
As I recall, I was eating a herring in dill, and watching Only Fools & Horses when the phone rang. The first words that tore through my eardrum were "You EXPLETIVE cheat!". I mentioned to Michael the other day that the freebee London underground newspaper Metro would be writing up a piece on this project and that it's massive readership might see a few more of the 500 on my list nudged in my direction.
Well in the intervening 2 days, Michael has worked out that this goes against the very spirit of our bet. The 500 that I'm writing to are meant to meet me selflessly and for NO PERSONAL BENEFIT for themselves, yet now with it being in the newspapers, Michael thinks that some will hope to gain publicity by agreeing to a meeting.
He makes a fair enough point but not a watertight one. How much publicity can, say, Sir Terence Conran gain from shaking hands with some palid freak in a brown hooded top. Not much.
I would like to thank Bel at the Metro (and Kieran) for thinking my story newsworthy and I'd like to thank '3AM girl' Caroline at the Mirror for putting me in touch with them. You must be quite knackered, no?
I'd also like to thank the number of you who have sent me contact details for the various listees who I was having trouble getting hold of. I won't name you all here but much appreciated. Why didn't I think of that earlier?
I have therefore, since been able to post my standard letter to:
Jim Bowen, Zadie Smith, Jeff Banks, Sir Rannulph Twistleton-Fiennes, Mystic Meg, Fatima Whitbread, Paul O Grady, Andy McNab and Jordan.
A most surreal combination of people, I'm sure you'd agree.