Wednesday, December 28, 2005


Stafford Rock BalancesI'm having a relaxing time doing not very much over the festive season which is making for a very nice change compared to the frantic way I spent the last few months. I'm sure that any regular reader of this page will be delighted to know that I have done a bit of UK based rock balancing.

After an intense few months of work I'm in no rush to race back into things so I'm trying to be a bit picky about agreeing to any work commitments so it's just going to be a mix of old favourites I enjoy doing or new things that I'm confident will be more fun than anything else.

A good example of the latter is a new Radio 4 show; Banter. It's hosted by Andrew Collins and features Richard Herring as a regular panellist all of which leads me to believe it should be fun. It involves a studio audience so if you're interested in being there (it's in London) on January 15th, take a lookee in here.

From January 30th to February 3rd I'll be having a few early mornings and returning to Channel 5's The Wright Stuff. They also have a studio audience so if early morning topical discussion floats your boat you can call 020 7284 7710/7715.

I hope you have a happy new year.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Valid all year

Once upon a time, before I was wearing a beard, I was at a do and Noddy Holder came up to me and said, "I like your sideburns." This made me very happy because no-one knows sideburns better than Noddy Holder. This week I was at a do and Sir Peter Blake approached me, saying, "you look like a painter." It gave me a very similar thrill. He was a lovely gent.

It's been two years since I've been to a Christmas party. That's odd.

As Christmas approaches and the end of the year hoves into view the temptation to look back on 2005 and reflect grows ever stronger. It's been another strange year... when I started performing my Googlewhack Adventure back in early 2003 I certainly didn't imagine that I'd still be touring it nearly 3 years later. But then I don't think I could ever have imagined it having quite the international appeal it seems to have had and it's that that has kept it on tour for so long. Now, 367 shows, a book and 2 book tours later I suspect that it's finally over. I have been offered some further dates in the States but I've decided to say no and to stay put for a while. It's time for a new challenge. I don't know what yet... but I'm enjoying not knowing what.

At the start of the year I wrote something about the novelty glasses that had appeared on New Year's Eve. It seemed to me - and it still does - that these glasses are very specific to our age. The ten years from 2000 to 2009 are the first that have had the double 0 in the middle in the age of mass production and so these must be the first years in which such items have been widely available. And from the year 2010 they will disappear once more, not to return for many years. I think this means they should be celebrated while it is still possible to do so and while I saw many pairs on New Year's Eve last year I'm sad to say that I haven't see many during the year itself.

It's as if people have treated them as nothing but a one-day novelty when actually, more than any other item, they are clearly valid for the whole year. I've certainly treated my two pairs as such. They came with me to LA back in March. They came with me to Niagara Falls in April, too. I had them with me in San Francisco, Cleveland and Aurora too. They came with me to The Grand Canyon, they revisited LA and they were still with me when the tour ended in Seattle. I'm wearing them right now as I type this. But I'll discard them when the year is out... when they've served their full 365 day term and not before.

I hope you have a great Christmas/Hanukah/Kwanzaa/whatever. I wish you well for 2006, too. I don't know what the year will bring, but hopefully it will involve something I'll want to tell you about one way or another. Pip pip.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

No longer on tour with...

As my tour is over, I've obviously stopped writing On Tour With Dave Gorman for the Guardian. The final piece is in today. I enjoyed writing them - it felt like I was sending a postcard to thousands of people each week and it was nice to stay in touch with Blighty. While I'm not very keen on further travels right now, I hope I'll be able to do more of this kind of thing in the future.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

My International Fridge Magnet Collection

Now that I'm back I've updated my international fridge magnet collection:
My International Fridge Magnet Collection, originally uploaded by Dave Gorman.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Nearly over

When I read something and I know the voice of the person who wrote it (like this for instance) then that's the voice I hear in my head as I'm reading. If you're the same and you're imagining my dulcet tones right now then for the sake of accuracy I ought to tell you that you'll need to imagine it a little croakier than normal and with the odd - ack - wince of pain too.

I wrote recently about my annoyance at discovering that the American producers had sold two shows a day to several of the venues on the US tour. It was particularly annoying because when they were promoting the show in New York they were very aware of the problems associated with doing that but several months later, perhaps with their thoughts elsewhere, they seemed to forget all about it. Well, on the final day of the tour it finally proved to be a real problem.

On Saturday there was a 5 o'clock show and a 9 o'clock show. Part way through the first show I felt something crack at the back of my throat and was then in pain for the final 40 or 50 minutes. When I came off stage I wanted to see a doctor because I was naturally concerned about doing any permanent damage. It was hastily arranged and a mad dash across town took me to a surgery in Ballard for an examination.

It turned out that the overuse of my throat has given me a nodule. I was a bit panicked when I heard this. "Nodule" wasn't a word I wanted to hear because I was pretty sure that years ago Elton John's career had been threatened by the presence of nodules on his throat. The doctor explained that it's basically equivalent to a callus and that it had cracked during the last show which accounted for the pain. He reassured me that while it would hurt to perform the show again it wouldn't do any permanent damage and he gave me something to help ease the pain a little. The show went ahead. The crowd were one of the best of the run which is lucky because the show was, understandably, not one of the best I'd done - hey, I had an open wound on my throat - but they had enough energy to make up for my slight wobbles.

All in all it made for a strange and dramatic end to the rollercoaster ride that was my Googlewhack Adventure. I spent Sunday morning in Fremont (see pic) which was fantastic. They have a Sunday Market there that reminded me of Spitalfields - a regular Sunday morning haunt for me in London - and I felt like I was already home. I could happily live in Fremont.

I had an uneventful flight home. Do you remember when BA were cancelling flights because their caterers were on strike? That feels like a long time ago. That was what was happening when I flew out to the States. When they served a meal on the flight home I suddenly realised how long I'd been away. I'm home now. I'm resting my voice. I'm resting everything.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Floating Bridge

Floating Bridge, originally uploaded by Dave Gorman.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The final day and the final two shows. When I started performing this show back in March 2003 I had no idea it was going to so dominate my life. In the last 2 and three quarter years I've performed the show 365 times not to mention writing the book and doing two book tours. By the end of tonight it will be 367 shows.

Seattle has provided me with some lovely treats for the final week. I've written before about how much I enjoy it when one of the people involved in the show gets to see it (most recently here) and it's happened for the last two nights.

Lisa and Tom, also known as Hippoc@mpi Wallp@per came along on Thursday night and it was great to be able to spend some time with them afterwards.

The other Seattle based googlewhack, Optic@lly Scriveners, belonged to John and Chris who did get along to see the show in New York back in January but came along again last night with a large group of friends. Here we are with a small number of their posse.

Right. Now I have to pack.

Thursday, December 8, 2005

3 to go...

Just three more days and four more shows and the googlewhack adventure will finally come to rest. How strange to have been saying those words over and over again for so long and to so many people. Odd. The Seattle run is proving to be a fine send off for the show. While the size of the audience can vary greatly they always seem to be up for it and the show is really rattling along which is great because I'd hate for it to end on a damp squib.

There's a very nice review in The Stranger today. It'll make you proud to be British. If indeed you are British. If you're not, it'll make you wish you were. It's here.

Tuesday, December 6, 2005

Golden Gardens Rock Balance

Tossed Salad & Scrambled Eggs

Tossed Salad & Scrambled Eggs, originally uploaded by Dave Gorman.

Monday, December 5, 2005

Seattle By Night

Seattle By Night, originally uploaded by Dave Gorman.

Thursday, December 1, 2005

Seattle is nice

I'm really enjoying Seattle. The second show was probably one of the best so far on this tour and really seemed to rattle along. There's a good review of the first show in the Seattle Times this morning too so it feels like we've hit the ground running.

I always like it when reviewers understand that it isn't really a show about computers and this reviewer definitely gets that. I know that the poster-quote they'll use will be, "a brilliant, humanistic tale of procrastinating, enabling, and side-splitting storytelling", but the most exciting part for me was the news that "Gorman is not inherently geeky". You see; I'm not a geek. It's official; it's in the Seattle Times. So there.

The whole review is on the reviews page.

A book I like

This is quite possibly the most fascinating book I've read all year. Using the analytical eye of an economist to look at the world it constantly challenges you to look beyond your gut reaction and to see things as they actually are. If drug dealers are all making easy money, why do so many of them live with their Mom? You'll definitely find yourself liberally quoting facts from it over dinner. Unless you eat alone. In which case you'll be thinking about it.

Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

See all the books I've recommended so far here.