23 December 2019
Did you see this report from The Mirror about a TalkRadio DJ getting an ambulance to somebody in Plymouth who’d taken an overdose?
I hope somebody from our postvention team got in touch with Lee to support him – he sounded pretty shookened up.
And there’s some more good news about Louise Reay (real name Beamont), a comedian who included references to her marriage in her show, Hard Mode, at the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe and in London. In February this year, her estranged husband, Thomas Reay, sued her for allegedly defaming him on stage and seeking an injunction and £30,000 in damages plus costs, which she said would have bankrupted her.
Other comedians, including David Baddiel, were worried that this case risked their right to free speech if it was decided that they couldn’t use material from their own lives and they could no longer talk about loved (and unloved) friends and relations in their acts. The husband argued that he wasn’t trying to introduce censorship, merely that he considered Beamont’s comments an unjustified personal attack.
Beamont set up a crowdfunding page in February, hoping to raise £10,000 for the costs of her defence and it’s obvious that a lot of us contributed because she ultimately raised more than £11,500 and issued a formal statement on 11 December saying “I am really grateful for the support I have received for this case. Thank you! A settlement has been reached, which has resulted in the Claimant discontinuing the proceedings. Both parties have agreed to make no further comment following settlement.”
I haven’t got the foggiest what she said about him or how accurate it was – I’d never even heard of her till I read about her appeal – but it’s good to know that people do still rally round when they perceive a possible injustice to allow the defendant a fair chance to put their own case to the courts.
On Friday I wrote an epic poem as I was getting ready for bed (S T Coleridge eat your heart out):
Tomorrow we’re going to be heading
up the M5 and M4 to Reading
it’s a very long way
to go in a day
but a niece will be having a wedding.
And so we went up yesterday and watched as Judy’s niece married a nice man wearing Fijian ceremonial dress as they stood together on a stunningly woven Fijian blanket brought over especially for the occasion.
With a day trip to Dalston on Wednesday to meet the beautiful Kristin, six days old at the time, I drove 700 miles last week and my neck dystonia is now complaining but it was lovely to see two new (exhausted) parents in Dalston and so many of Judy’s family all together at the wedding.
As you may have gathered, I’m a bit paranoid about computer security and, as well as anti-virus software, I have something called CCleaner on my computer which removes trackers and cookies, empties the recycle bin and generally cleans up stuff such as records of recent searches. I also reduce website privacy permissions to the lowest possible level so I occasionally get plaintive little messages saying I’ll still get advertisements but they won’t be as relevant to my interests, which means people don’t try to sell me moth pads because I just bought some.
Unrelated ads are much more fun (if you bother to look at them) (though some of them are clever enough to move and flicker so the eye is drawn to them) and I was amused this week to see a pop-up ad for “Nude stick-on bras” and find myself wondering if the word ‘nude’ had changed its meaning, and how one unsticks them, and whether they are disposable and/or washable and how they provide any support if they’re just stuck on? At this point, I was reminded of a woman who apparently bought a wireless bra and emailed the supplier because they’d forgotten to include the password (which, combined with voice-activated technology, offers some interesting options such as “left side down a bit”.)
On which note, I hope you all have a happy week, celebrating or not celebrating in whatever way turns you on.