‘Why is the sky blue?’
That opening question seizes the attention. It’s a grabber. I’m in their world. I want to know what’s going on.
The whole family sits around the table, as families never, ever do these days unless they’ve just defrosted an Iceland Frozen Christmas Dinner Special. The girl answers the query effortlessly, impatiently even. The family are quizzing the daughter of this happy crew on matters of natural science – clearly she has a biology mock coming up – so they’re encouraging her learning as they dine. Marvellous.
But, hold up! Who’s doing the quizzing now? Why it’s only the original ‘Nutty Boy’ himself – Graham ‘Suggs’ McPherson! Y’know – the bloke from Madness! He did that annoying version of Cecilia. And the awful song about Camden. He was in Madness!
Baggy Trousers! Baggy Trousers! THAT’S the one! I likes driving in me car – honk honk toot toot!
So – why is Suggs round the table? And how comes he’s testing the young lady on three things a plant needs for photosynthesis? CHRIST ALONE KNOWS.
The next question comes from the lad. He wants answers about something to do with Omega 3 oils – those things fish have coarsing through their gills that put hairs on your chest and a zing in your pecker. Oh blimey. Dad starts ticking down time with his fingers like the Countdown clock powered by an arsehole-battery. The girl can’t answer the question. She will fail her mock exam. Her future suddenly looks hopeless.
‘But that’s not on the curriculum!’ she wails, almost in agony, perhaps having sighted her destitute destiny.
Her cheeky brother flings his question cards into the air, where they pause, mid-frame. Everyone is frozen in time – apart from Graham ‘Suggs’ McPherson who begins to say how fortunate it is that the fishfingers the family is chowing down down on contain a few of them there Amiga 500 oils. Handy!
Now I think of it, how is that lucky? Maybe by actually eating the oils she’ll fill the knowledge void in her small head? Or maybe she’ll catch sight of the miniscule nutritional facts box on the side of the box the fingers came in? Or maybe Suggs is talking shit in an advert he has no reason to be in apart from a fat cheque for a lazy celebrity appearance? One of these things, I’d imagine.
After Suggs gives his little infoburst, time resumes itself and the cards fall to the table as though nothing happened. ‘Is it fish? It’s fish!’ the girl cries, having worked it out by absorbing the Commodore 64 oils in her dirty sandwich. Suggs does some jazz hands and a silly gurn. Weirdly, Dad doesn’t lift the young lad up by his hair, plonk him over his knee and give him a good thrashing for throwing cards all over the place and making a bloody mess of the kitchen. ‘Our House’ by Madness kicks in, and the advert is over. The tenuous link makes itself known – Suggs once sang a song called ‘Our House’ in the 80s. It’s weird he didn’t make his living by more devious means seeing as he’s been concealing an ability to stop time up his sleeve. Clearly he realised he’d make more money making substandard appearances in rubbish adverts than he ever would using his magical superpower.
ONE STEP BEYOND!