Tag Archives: Michael Caine

July 7th 1975

“Came 3rd in TD with 56%. Started reading Spy Story – not bad”

Len Deighton may have been one of the first spy fiction writers to have come up with what we now refer to as a ‘police procedural’ style, one which hones in – with exacting detail – on every aspect of a crime.

Deighton’s first four novels revolved around a popular anti-hero named Harry Palmer, later brought to life by actor Michael Caine in film adaptations such as “The Ipcress File

His 1972 novel “Spy Story” did feature some of the minor characters from his earlier works but had a new protagonist, Pat Armstrong, who also works in British intelligence, investigating Soviet warfare risks.

Needless to say I had to look that up as I can’t remember a thing about this book other than, for whatever reason, I held onto it for years (and years) afterwards, only getting rid of it when I was ready to ship my belongings to the USA in 2005. Maybe I thought it was a ‘belter’ or maybe I just thought it was cool to have it on my bookshelves. Who knows why we hang on to books?

In other news, a mere 56% was good enough to place me third in my Technical Drawing class. I’m not sure if that says more about me or my fellow students?


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May 16th 1975 (I)

“John, Paul, George, Ringo & Bert. Got drunk. Bloody good musak all.”

This was a college trip to London’s West End and the Lyric Theatre. I was amongst a coachload of students, many drinking copiously on the way up, then – despite our age – hitting a pub or two before getting to the theatre. Those were the days my friend, sometimes they had to end!

“John, Paul, George, Ringo… and Bert” was Liverpudlian playwright Willy Russell’s first big ‘hit’. Russell would later gain fame and notoriety for penning such smash plays like “Educating Rita” which was turned into a movie starring Julie Walters and Michael Caine. Other stuff he is known for include “The Blood Brothers” and “Shirley Valentine”

JPGR & B’s story arc has been describe elsewhere as “an accurate and honest account of the Beatles’ rise and fall, culminating in an abortive attempt to stage a reunion concert. The show was notable for it’s ironic juxtaposition of songs against dialogue, and the author’s sparkling Liverpool humour“. I’ll have to take their word for it because not only are we dealing with my notoriously poor memory here, but we are also dealing with it whilst it was originally under the effects of a few pints of London’s finest! My review of the performance – “bloody good muzak all” – could just as easily have been based either alcohol consumption as much as fact, something I will leave you, dear reader, to decide.

Yes, for what ever reason, I have held on to the programme from this 1975 evening’s event, and yes I plan to share the contents of it. It’s a fascinating document of its era, not just for the adverts it contained but also when you realise who I saw perform in this play and who else was involved in it…

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The 1973 Diary (IV)

How very very SAD was I that I went through this informative article on “Taking Your First Photographs” and circled every mention of the word (band name) “Focus”

At the end of the article I wrote “Focus was written 16 times on the last 4 pages – now then, there’s not a lot of people who know vat!

Trivia corner – The phrase “not a lot of people know that” is often – and wrongly – attributed to actor Michael Caine. It was actually coined by Peter Sellers – doing an impersonation of Michael Caine – on the Parkinson show one Saturday evening. The phrase stuck in the public’s mind.

Caine HATES it, apparently.

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