Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Spent much of yesterday with a journalist from the Daily Telegraph. I picked her up from the station at 12.31 and dropped her back around five hours later. OK, there was a bit of driving around, but that's a lot of talking. It is very disconcerting to think what you are saying is being taken down and held as evidence. You can see across from you on the kitchen table, a small black box sucking in all your thoughts and feelings ready to spit them back at you later. The real problem though came at the end (by which time even I was getting bored of hearing myself witter on). The journalist went up to the bathroom and did seem to be a long time up there. The nice PR girl from Penguin had also come up from London for the day. She realised before I did that the journalist was in fact locked in the bathroom. The door does not quite shut. Well, it does shut with a protesting shriek but there are no door handles either side. Once we had realised she was effectively locked in, I thought briefly about whether to keep her there, tell her that I was her number one fan and feed her spaghetti through the hole in the door where the shaft of the door handle should be - not forever, just until she wrote and filed the feature. Unfortunately, she had her mobile phone with her which she was using to rap on the door. I did not think she could break her way out with it, but I did think there was an outside chance she might call the police to report me. There was also the small matter of the PR girl or "crucial prosecution witness" as I began to think of her. I did not know where holding a journalist hostage came in her media handling file but I doubted it was in her list of "Wife in the North- Immediate Priorities". I do have a large suitcase I could have bundled the PR girl into, but it all seemed to be getting a bit complicated. Eventually, I let the journalist out.