For wellbeing month I will be giving a talk and taking questions at Chichester Library on 22nd March. For anyone living nearby it would be great to meet you. I will be doing my version of the classic bottle glass routine my favourite comedian Tommy Cooper was so famous for. I hope to see you there.
I have always struggled to keep a straight face and when my colleague David Bond was interviewing me as part of our new workshop tapes I fell apart.
The Stop Drinking Now workshop will be available in March and I will post more details then. It will include David and myself without too much merriment and also Dan Jones who will be doing some sterling work on helping to create the right state of mind to quit alcohol - forever. Watch this space, or please leave your details if you would like me to contact you with more information..
With my new book finished and being edited, I thought you might like to see an extract from the epilogue. The book is a comedy about my experiences as a student teacher but this page brings home why I never completed the course!
Extract from the epilogue of ‘The Naughtiest Boy in the School’
I went home at the end of term feeling despondent and I got drunk. I got very drunk, and in retrospect there lay the problem.
Having spent most of my working life in the City of London insurance industry, drink had become almost a way of life for me. Whilst there is no way I would ever have mixed drink with teaching and my totally sober venture away with the School A year-sevens to the Isle of Wight is testimony to that, but I would reward myself every afternoon with a glass of wine when I got home from school, I would even avoid staying late after school if possible so I could get home to that ‘much needed’ glass. The glass would become a bottle, the lesson planning would become a haphazard affair and little if any other work would get done. It was no wonder I was starting to fall behind in things. On top of this I was suffering from gout, a condition I had suffered with on and off for years and which I fervently denied was alcohol related or induced. Every day at School B I would be walking around in acute pain (trying not to limp and look like some dilapidated old crock) which as anyone knows who suffers constant pain, makes it very hard to live life as it should be enjoyed.
I also started to feel old and that made me think old, and a lot of that was caused by stress due to the pain; stress due to the lack of attention in the planning and home activity I should have been accomplishing but wasn’t, due to the drinking; and stress due to the guilt I felt, because deep down I knew all my problems were drink related. But like any alcoholic, I didn’t want to face the truth. I also had other health concerns and issues at home to deal with but these were irrelevant to what my decision regarding teaching came to be, and even these issues eventually turned out to linked to the impact drink was having on my life.
Very Useful Hint: Despite how in need of a drink you may think you feel at the end of the teaching day, alcohol and teaching do not mix.
With only a few weeks left to complete, I quit the course.
The book is due for release in March/April and I will be something any PGCE student would love to read. I will post more details nearer the time.
I was hoping to get a lot further with writing my new book today but someone is in my writing chair and she is allowed to stay there as long as she wants. Little Scabby, the star of one of my most popular videos was probably hit by a car this afternoon as she came home with a battered face and looking very sorry for herself. She is now being well looked after at home and spoilt terribly but we hope she will be OK overnight. She hasn't bitten or scratched me since she came home so she can't be that well.
Its nice to be sitting here sober thinking positive thoughts than being already blotto in the next room and of no use to man or beast.
Many thanks to all of you who entered my Dry January competition. There were some superb reasons given for wanting to quit alcohol and if I was rich enough I would send all the entrants a signed book. I have informed the winners of their much deserved success and to the rest of you thank you once again.
The good news is that I have decided to run a competition every month and have now added a competition page for this very purpose. So if you entered but didn't win and would like another go then by all means do so. I will not match names with the last entrants so there is nothing to be lost. I will also slightly change the theme of the competition each month and this time I am asking what you would give as the reason for not drinking to someone who is badgering you for an answer. The sort of person who I used to be who just wouldn't take no for an answer. Good Luck!