Thursday, 9 June 2011

How Did That Happen?

(The following is taken from one of my Stand Up Comedy routines, so apologies if you have seen it)

It started so well - I was born on Saturday 10th April 1971 to Peter and Joan Lagrue. Although not unplanned, I was a surprise to my parents as my mother had been told that she couldn't have anymore children after my sister.

If you've seen my sister, you would understand why. (that's a cat turd in my Christmas dinner this year for sure!)

Nonetheless, I arrived anyway - weighing only 5 lbs. However, I immediately began demanding a feed every two hours, and subsequently as an infant I was a little bit pudgy. I was given the nickname "Lolly-Pud" by my Parents  - Lolly being substituted for Laurence, and Pud because I was a little fat pudding. To Illustrate this point, here is a picture of me on my first Birthday:

As you can see by my chubby cheeks, I was a little porker. From this picture you can also see that my first present was an "Al Quaeda" dress up kit, and that my Mother was either rubbish at making a cake in the traditional shape of a number "1", or that she was very fond of roman numerals. From memory, the next five Birthday's were like the open titles of the Star Wars movies.
Something else is clear from this photo, and that is the fact that I was a little cutie. I can guarantee that to some degree or another, every woman reading this blog went "awwwww" when they saw that photo. And you were right to do so, because I was a little cracker. And my good looks continued........

"Now that's either seeweed, or poo."
Here I am, a few years later at the beach - abandoned by my parents it would appear. They had obviously left me there the pick through the seaweed and dog poo that littered our nearest beach (this was Essex, you know), while they went and had a few crafty pints. I tell you what, if child line had been around in those days, its phone would have been red hot from the calls from our house. But look at the photo: little blonde locks, cute little face, the works. I was still a lovely looking little boy, a boy that any mother could love.

I was on the road to becoming a real heart breaker.

Noel Edmonds was my Style Icon
Here is another picture. Notice that at this point in my life (around 5 years old), I am not wearing glasses - although I am fairly sure that the delightful knitwear I was wearing played a large part in the onset of my visual deficiencies.
In spite of this, you can clearly see that I am still very gorgeous. My hair is still fairly blonde (ish), and I have a lovely little smile. A right little cherub I was - and then some.

As you can tell, the pictures above were taken in relatively quick succession in terms of my life. However, after this last picture, I was unable to find any other photographs of me until I was a fair bit older. In fact the next photo you are about to see, was taken when I was approximately 11 or 12 years old. I don't know why there are no photos of me between the ages of 6 and 11, but I can only imagine that something terrible happened - an event so horrible, it would change me to the point that I became almost unrecognisable. Take one more look at the little fair haired child in the awful jumper in the picture above. Somehow, in the space of six years I went from looking like that, to looking like this:

Oh Dear Lord.....

What the hell happened!!!??? Who is this.....this creature?

Look at this photo - I have no eyes!! there are no eyes behind those glasses. I look like the cousin of Beaker from "The Muppet Show"!
And where has my smile gone? All you can see is my teeth doing an impression of a barcode. My hair is a mess, and what on earth is going on with that collar? That was not the fashion - the old "one in, and one out" look. The only thing that leads you believe it was me is the fact that I'm wearing a terrible jumper.

Yes, it is truly me. Yes, it is truly awful. I have looked at this photo many times, and every time the same questions arise:

I know exactly where this photo was taken. It was in one of those Photo Booths - this particular one was inside the "Boots" chemist in the town centre. Now, I know that at aged 11 or 12, my parents didn't trust me to got to town by myself. It was within walking distance, but they wouldn't have let me go alone.
So that means, that I had adult supervision. Which leads to my first question: What sort of parent lets their child have a photo taken looking like that!? Do you expect me to believe that before that photo was taken, one or both of my parents stood in front of me and said "right, let's take a look at you - we don't want you looking a fool, do we?" Obviously not Mum and Dad!

Here's a scary thought: what if the photo was taken AFTER they tidied me up? What must I have looked like beforehand!?

Also, considering that we would have walked to town (my dad didn't pass his driving test until he was sixty), my parents were obviously happy to parade me though the streets looking like a fireworks night guy that fell into a jumble sale! What kind of people were they? If you tried to do that these days, you'd end up on some sort of register!

Sadly for me, this photo heralded the beginning of the "awkward" phase in my life. Looking back, I can understand why I was such a spectacular failure at school with the ladies. Incidentally, the awkward phase continued for the next 25 years or so.

And this is me today. Still not the best looking guy in the world, but I've come some way to regaining the charm I had as a small child.

True, the hair is vanishing from my head, I still haven't learnt how to smile properly, and my t-shirts have terrible creases in them. But I am happy with who I am, I know what my worth is, and I know that I am a good person.

And I'll take that.


  1. You should be happy with who your are! You are a fantastic person. We've all got hideous photos of ourselves from the past. Remember the photo collage from my 40th birthday party!

  2. Excellent - one of your best blogs yet