Tomorrow, we’re filming a sports challenge programme that British readers of a certain age will recognise as a close relation to ‘Superstars.’ Only without Brian Jacks. Nor, indeed, anybody else. Or so we thought at 10am this morning.
“I’ve a bit of a problem,” said the poor sports science chap who had set things up for us. “I’ve one athlete called to Stuttgart at zero notice, one with a groin strain injury, one taken to her bed with flu, one with a spot exam dropped on her, and one who appears to have dropped off the face of the Earth.”
That left one. This wasn’t looking good.
Several hundred phone calls ensue. Predominantly lovely people field our desperate plea, sympathise, and do what they can. They make us feel pathetic and whiney, and profoundly grateful. But they don’t find us people for tomorrow.
A crisis meeting is held, at which we conclude – after much angst – that a preferable option to punting the filming on is to revert to the original idea for the programme, shoot with our presenters only, and plan to patch the show up with another item if we have to. Fine.
And then… then the original chap calls back. He’s spent the day miserable as sin because (a.) he started by spending an hour being attacked by his dentist, and (b.) he thinks he’d screwed everything up. Then at the last minute he miraculously pulls three more athletes out of the bag. Hurray! The shoot is on.
So: back to plan A. I sit down with the script, to start reading it through and making changes, as I’d intended to do at 10am. Only, it’s 7pm.
Some days are like that.