I love my dad, he would carry me on his shoulders, and then swing me so high with one leg, and my head would sometimes skim the lampshade. I would scream so loudly that our dog would get nervous and start barking and biting randomly.
We caused chaos with our swings and screams but my dad made me laugh so much. He once pointed out the horizon of High Carntyne to me from our bedroom window in the East End of Glasgow. I was convinced that the four big grey turreted buildings standing hard against the Glasgow sky was a porridge factory when in fact it was Barlinnie prison. Dad told me heaps of stuff and always encouraged me to write and tell stories.
Now dad is nearly 80 years old, he lives alone since my step mum died and he suffered a mild stroke. He gets lonely, like all older people living alone and doesn’t like to admit it but when I walk through his door, he grabs me for a hug and for a tiny moment I fully expect him to whip my leg up and swing me about.
It shocks me horribly to watch him struggle with steps, pavements, slippy roads and hard to cut toast.
Yet he embraced technology.
Though this was a man who repaired television sets in the 60s and 70s, he owned a box of valves that looked liked atom bombs to me and he showed me how to solder and repair radios. He loved gadgets and sits with me as I show him my latest apps on my iphone.
Dad got the internet and loved the world radio stations, he adored its ability to explain everything through Wikipedia and Google, he relished getting emails and looking at instant images of his far flung family and most of all he sat with glee as he Skyped me and chatted for free to me when I was in New Zealand on tour.
My point is, if my dad who doesn’t truly trust electric can openers can embrace the web, then we all can!
Multi-award-winning Scottish comedienne, playwright, award-winning blogger, best-selling author and former Scotsman newspaper columnist Janey Godley has performed her comedy shows and one-woman play around the world, including off-Broadway in New York. She is a regular on BBC Radio 4’s Just a Minute.
In 2006, Janey was nominated and was close runner-up for the annual Scotswoman of the Year title as ‘the most inspirational woman in Scotland‘. At the New Zealand International Comedy Festival, she won the Spirit of The Festival Award.
A regular 5-star performer at the Edinburgh Fringe, in 2008 she won the Fringe Report Award as ‘Best Performer‘ and two Nivea Funny Women Fringe Awards – as ‘Best Stand-Up‘ and, overall, for ‘Best Show‘ as “one of the most prolific and extraordinary stand-up comedians working in the UK”. In 2008, she also won Edinburgh’s WAG of the Year Award as ‘Best After Dinner Speaker‘, was nominated as ‘Best International Guest‘ in the 2008 New Zealand Comedy Guild Awards and was voted No 3 by readers in London listing magazine Time Out’s list of Top Ten Comedians.
In 2009, her new Edinburgh Fringe show Godley’s World received three 5-star reviews.
Throughout the 2010 Edinburgh Fringe, she performed her new solo stand-up show “The Godley Hour” to rave reviews and appreciative audiences and, with her daughter Ashley Storrie, a children’s show “Tall Storrie & Wee Godley”.