First impressions last
I am told I make a very bad first impression on people.
This is never a good thing, because first impressions last.
When I was working on Channel 4 TV series The Last Resort With Jonathan Ross, the American comedian Steve Martin was a guest on the show. I think it was his first appearance on British TV. I only met him briefly just before he went on set to perform.
I thought he was a bit odd. He moved in a very stiff way – he was very unrelaxed and I thought he was clearly one of those occasional showbiz people who are just overwhelmingly doolally.
When he moved his body, everything moved. His torso did not twist; his entire body, from neck to ankle turned as one unit, as if made from concrete. And he barely turned his head. When he did, it was in a very odd, starched way.
When he went on the show, he performed as The Great Flydini, a comedy magic act in which he had lots of little bits and pieces hidden within his trousers – he produced eggs, full-sized paintings, a telephone, a singing glove puppet of Luciano Pavarotti and much more… all from the flies of his trousers.
I thought he also dropped out of his suit lots of bits of cutlery which (for comedy purposes) he was supposed to have stolen from the canteen. But, when I looked at the video on YouTube he did not. I had mis-remembered it.
The whole thing – the whole reason for him moving oddly when I met him just before he went on set – was because he had all these props hidden inside his clothing for comedic purposes. No wonder he moved oddly.
I mis-remembered the cutlery.
But, to this day, what I do remember is that Steve Martin was very odd.
Except he was not.
First impressions last.