It’s not every day you accidentally jump a queue, frighten someone half to death, and nearly get done for assault. And the person concerned happened to be TV presenter Sarah ‘phwoooaaar’ Beeny, wholesome girl-next-door from Channel 4’s ‘Property Ladder‘ show.
All I was doing was wandering round the Grand Designs Live show, on the hunt for a new front door. A knot of people were blocking the aisle, and there seemed no alternative to a sweaty tussle pushing through the mob of middle-class bodies obsessing over cornices and high-gloss laminates.
“I know!” thought I. “There’s a me-sized gap at the edge of this unseemly scrum, where, if I turn myself through 90 degrees, I can just about fit. I’ll have to be quick, though – the crowd appears to be getting bigger.”
So I stroll nonchalantly towards the edge of the seething mob, all of whom seem to be holding books, and squeeze sideways into the space inside the exhibitor booth. My eyes fixed on the other side of the booth, an exit strategy already formulated, I strike out for my goal…
…and end up half-toppling over a desk, where the reason for the scrum is seated, busily signing autographs.
The gorgeous, pouting TV totty looks up for a second, and her wide-eyed expression is half “What a rude man, pushing to the front like that” and half “OH MY GOD! A STALKER! PLEASE DON’T KILL ME!”
The crowd tenses. I look into the abyss, and it is painted in neutral colours (to create a blank canvas for prospective buyers). They look restless. The situation looks ugly.
I know I have a death wish, but is this really how it’s going to end? Lynched by a mob of fiftysomething homeowners wielding rolled-up samples of the latest embossed wallpaper?
Oh well. If I’m to be beaten to a bloody pulp. at least it’ll be offset by tasteful beige accents. Not the worst way to go.
If I’d only thought of it in time, I’d have asked her to deliver the line millions of male viewers tune in every week to hear: “Let’s go upstairs and take a second look at your layout!”
But rather than letting rip with this masterpiece of articulate thinking, I slink off in the direction from whence I’d come. Well… given that my goals for the day involved a new front door, I suppose I WAS looking for an opening.