So, over the next few days I'm going to post five more inspirations, with annotations on their autobiographical significance (forgive me the indulgence, I need something to post about and "wrote a lot today because of imminent deadline" is going to get boring very quickly).
Today's inspiration: Minder
Before I discovered the TV adventures of German n'er-do-wells, or famous Gallifreyans, my favourite programme was Minder. Minder was great.
I remember when I was about seven at infants school we had a lesson where the teacher took a survey of when was everyone's bedtime (dunno what this was supposed to teach us). I lied and said I was tucked up in bed by 7pm. But I was always awake till past 10 every night watching programmes like Minder and The Sweeney. My parents were wonderful. Or lax. I haven't worked out which yet.
[An aside: you know how people say they didn't realise TV shows had writers or directors when they were young (and it must be true, for so many different people keep saying it). I don't remember thinking that exactly, but I do remember a feeling that everything on TV wasn't real, like a photo-realistic animation, and all the people on TV were controlled avatars of some kind. Except Frank Muir.
I thought Frank must be real because he was on both Call My Bluff and a Cadbury's Fruit and Nut commercial ('Everyone's a fruit and nut case'). So, for a period of some months (maybe even years) I believed the only people that existed were those I'd met and Frank Muir. Needless to say, I was something of a strange kid. For some reason, though, Dennis Waterman was immune to this despite also being in two shows. I'm still not sure Dennis Waterman exists.]
To keep the spirit of my youth alive I still go to bed after 10, and I regularly lie in surveys.
Next: The Ladykillers