Yesterday marked my 40Fifty Challenge’s second newspaper appearance, with a lengthy article in our local daily, The Evening Gazette.
Actually, the name is slightly misleading, as I acquired my copy just before 6am – and believe me, that’s far too early to be greeted by a picture of yourself holding an electric shaver to your head.
The feature was on page 7, and if I remember correctly, The Daily Star used to include a “page 7 fella” many moons ago, as a contrast to a tabloid rival’s universally-known topless page 3 models. It’s comforting to know that Teesside’s daily paper is continuing the tradition of hunky men appearing on this particular page...
The very definition of irony...
The opening paragraph certainly gave me the big build-up, by stating I was “brave” [I’m not], and that the challenge was “taking the country by storm [it’s barely taking my house by storm...]. Obviously I wasn’t naive enough to expect my words to be quoted verbatim, and the article did utilise an element of journalistic licence to overstate a few things – I might have had some difficult times in my life, but I wouldn’t have called it “a troubled past”, and my hip condition (femoro-acetabular impingement) doesn’t mean I “can’t run”, just that it will bloody hurt if I do. And five Great North Runs, as well as a 25-year cricket career suggests that whilst I might not have been the fittest or the fastest, I wasn’t completely immobile.
In fairness however, the only thing that was something of a disappointment, in what was otherwise excellent coverage for the challenge, was that neither my website address nor the Just Giving page address were included, meaning that even if a reader had wanted to make a donation, they probably wouldn’t know how or where.
But no matter, it was great that the paper was prepared to feature my story and confirm (not that proof was really needed) that I take a terrible photo, and now it’s time to get back to the challenge and try and tick off a couple more tasks. Boxing and netball are next on the list – about as wide a sporting contrast as you could get, but one thing is for certain... I’m likely to be rubbish at both!