1. What is your role on the expedition?
1. Support swimmer and head of entertainments.
2. How did you get involved?
Dan supported me on my boat across the Channel last year and we swam together a fair bit in Dover and Ireland. We have a close but antagonistic relationship and he enjoys teasing me mercilessly about everything, including my supposedly inferior skills at sh*thead, a card game (Ed: Dan is currently 15 up).
3. What skills and experience do you bring to the expedition?
It’s unclear. I will be swimming a couple of hours a day to keep Dan company and for morale, although Dan has called me ‘Decoy’ (for sharks), which is a joke, I think.
4. What’s your favourite joke/quote/anecdote?
For some strange reason we always recall Del Preston’s inimitable cameo in Wayne’s World 2: as part of our pre-swim ritual done in our best Brummie:
So there I am, in Sri Lanka, formerly Ceylon, at about 3 o’clock in the morning, looking for one thousand brown M&Ms to fill a brandy glass, or Ozzy wouldn’t go on stage that night. So, Jeff Beck pops his head ’round the door, and mentions there’s a little sweets shop on the edge of town. So – we go. And – it’s closed. So there’s me, and Keith Moon, and David Crosby, breaking into that little sweets shop, eh. Well, instead of a guard dog, they’ve got this bloody great big Bengal tiger. I managed to take out the tiger with a can of mace, but the shopowner and his son… that’s a different story altogether. I had to beat them to death with their own shoes. Nasty business, really. But, sure enough, I got the M&Ms, and Ozzy went on stage and did a great show.
5. What is your favourite song to wake up to?
Gypsy, Fleetwood Mac. For every wandering soul…
6. If you were stuck on a desert island (in the Atlantic) what would you bring and why?
A large supply of jaffa cakes, note paper to write my memoirs and a good pillow that allows your head to sink into the middle.
7. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done?
Held at gunpoint whilst invigilating an exam in my first week as an assistant lecturer at a university in Nigeria. Weird because the guy wielding the gun wore a burgundy suit. You need to be pretty brave to pull that off.
8. What will you miss most about being on land?
My family and friends and particularly my little nephew, Samuel who was born in March.
9. What are you least looking forward to?
Getting in the water.
10. What are you most looking forward to?
Seeing Dan swim the last 100 metres to dry land.