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Otway The Movie and BAFTA

December 31, 2013

As I tramped around the Sussex countryside in the continual pursuit of that Adonis like figure for which I am just to renowned in my own mind, I was, as usual cursing the weather in England. Blowing a gale and with rain lashing sideways is never conducive to having a good time, and yesterday morning was worse than most. In order to pass the time,  one tries to distract oneself from what is actually happening by thinking. Anything will do, and it often starts with pleasing thoughts about the benefits of opening an account with Currencies Direct for foreign exchange needs. However, satisfying as that is, the mind tends to wander. Where it goes does not matter. The mere fact that one is distracted from the boring and irksome necessity of exercise is very welcome. An hour spent walking in the rain goes a lot quicker when one is thinking happy thoughts.

flooding in arundel

The flood plain of Arundel seen from the South Downs

Yesterday for instance, for some reason I cannot fathom, I was thinking about car insurance. I know, I need to get a life. Anyway, whilst considering this aspect of life it occurred to me that I have third party insurance and I want to know how I can make a claim to stop the Liberal Democrats. Three party politics is weak and wishy-washy so we don’t bother to have democracy in our house. That Nice Lady Decorator makes the decisions and we all obey. Anyway, with the walk over, duty done, wet clothes hung up, I began to prepare for a new onslaught, the visit of the legend that is John Otway.

His arrival  presaged another assault on the hostelries and restaurants of Arundel. The recent sad loss of his partner of the last 26 years after a two-year battle with cancer has taken its toll on the great man, but he is suddenly back to his old self, full of energy and ideas. It is a given that when he comes to visit, he will want to talk about himself. It is a fact acknowledged by all of his friends and I have been lucky enough to have been one of those for over 40 years. It was the same when I met him when I was 18 and nothing has changed. Luckily, I like nothing more than to spend an evening talking about Otway. Past present and future, it does not matter, all are equally as entertaining to me. It matters not to him either. As long as he is the subject, and none of us go off message for extended periods, a very fine evening can be spent, and so it was last night.

Commencing at the Kings Arms, where we did our best to reduce their stocks of London Pride, we eventually poured out of the pub in search of food. Normal procedure is to find the local curry house and indulge on some of India’s finest, but in a bit of a departure from tradition, we settled instead upon The Bay Tree, which exceeded expectations again with a wonderful meal. I think I enjoyed it all the more because Mr Otway was paying.

Returning home for a nightcap, as is normal, we ticked into some vintage port left over from Christmas, whilst continuing the theme, before I hit the proverbial brick wall sometime after midnight, leaving the Decorator to talk to the pop star. Earlier, we had discussed the slim chance he has of securing a BAFTA nomination for his film Otway The Movie. In case you may not have realised, it is a film about his life, made by him about him, for him, oh, and all his fans, amongst which I count myself. He has searched for some criteria which would allow him to seek a nomination, and it appears that the film is eligible in the documentary section, where competition is a little more sparse, and he estimates that he has a 1 in 5 chance of a nomination. No chance of winning one, the prize is merely getting a nomination. If enthusiasm and self belief were the only attributes required his BAFTA would be a formality.

Chris France

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