I will start this months blog with a question. What were you doing on the 22nd October 2002?
If like me normally you can’t remember what you did last week then this question will appear almost impossible to answer unless you were either getting married or your wife was giving birth to one of your children. Now these events are pretty memorable even to someone with my dodgy memory, but I can remember exactly what I was doing, and who with. Now I know what you are thinking, but it has nothing to do with sex or any other nefarious activity. I started a love affair.
Now I know what you are thinking, I have finally gone mad by admitting to the world that I had an affair. But it wasn’t with a person otherwise Ann my long suffering wife would have had me castrated and left to live in a bin liner under some railway arch somewhere.
So I will tell you the story and I will leave it up to you to make your mind up weather or not it has a happy ending.
At the time I was working in Local Radio as a Technical Manager / Producer who was responsible for delivering large scale broadcast projects for the station. Now the Managing Director of the station I was working for was an infamous petrol head who came up with the bright idea that we would broadcast live from the Motor Show at the NEC at Birmingham to help generate interest in creating ad revenue from local car dealers who would a) sponsor it and b) buy advertising spots throughout the broadcast.
I did point out that we were only a local station broadcasting across Manchester not a national station (they were the only people with the budget and staff for such a project) but he didn’t let that stop him. So armed with our trusty engineer and the presenters we met at six am at the station for the journey down to Birmingham.
Now the media briefing was at eight thirty and Birmingham was 80 miles away and we would reach our destination right in the middle of rush hour, this was going to be challenging. Our MD who loved a challenge decided that he would drive to ensure we reached our destination in time.
When I looked in the back of the car I noticed that our female lunchtime presenter was sat with a blanket over her head, when I asked her what she was doing, she replied rather curtly “you have got no idea what this journey is going to be like, its going to be terrifying”, “I have driven with him before”. I thought obviously nothing could be that bad and thought she was just being highly strung.
How wrong was I, all I can say is that being driven by a madman for 80 miles down one of the busiest motorways on the planet was at best worrying and at worst a nightmare which I re-live on a regular basis in my darkest dreams. So after screaming out loud once or twice and hearing our female presenter use language that would make a rugby player blush we arrived at our destination with ten minutes to spare.
So once in the studio it was my job to fix up the interviews that would punctuate the show three times an hour. No easy task but I managed to assemble people who I thought would be interesting and have a story to tell.
During one of my long walks to pick up a guest I stumbled upon what I thought was the most beautiful car I had ever seen in my life, It was love at first sight. Now I know that cars according to my wife are only a means of getting from a to b, but being a man sometimes something happens. You see something your heart wants, whilst your head is telling you its something you don’t need but you just have to have anyway.
Now anyone who has worked in Radio will tell you that the pay isn’t great but the fringe benefits are spectacular. So I walked onto the stand and booked a test drive even though the £28,000 price tag was way out of my range and had the time of my life.
The car in question was the Chrysler Crossfire, it was retro whilst being sporty and was the talking point of everyone who we interviewed that day.
So lets bring the story unto date. During the last few weeks I have been looking for a two seater sports car that myself and Ann can go away in and have some fun at weekends. I was looking at Porsche’s, Mercedes and even Jaguars however whilst I was looking I stumbled on the car I fell head over heels with some twelve years earlier and at a price I could afford.
So I have embarked on the next stage of my belated mid life crisis, I am now the proud owner of a Chrysler Crossfire and in spite of all the bad press it received from the likes of Jeremy Clarkson it is a joy to drive (even it it does frighten the living daylights out of you if you press to hard on the gas pedal).
So there you have it, my affair is out in the open, it has only taken me twelve years to take it to the next level and only time will tell if it is a match made in heaven or a pathway to hell.
Who knows what the future will bring, but it will be fun whilst it lasts!