On stage, I’ve asked people what they consider to be a sign of love. People say all sorts in reply. Flowers, patience. One man said “depression”. One of the answers I get a lot is “holding hands”. I agree wholeheartedly. There’s nothing that says CUTE more than an old couple holding hands. Unless it’s icy. Then it’s just practical. I hold hands with my fella because (1) I love him and (2) I can trip up on nothing. He has good arms, strong enough to steady me. I’m quite dramatic when he’s not there though. I once twisted both of my ankles on a dodgy kerb and told people for weeks that I’d had “a fall”.
It is my innate clumsiness that makes me such a massive fan of Dancing on Ice. I love Strictly but Dancing on Ice is more dangerous, I think. If what you’re led to believe as a kid is true, then it’s just a matter of time before someone gets all of their fingers sliced off if no one tells them the rule about pulling your hands to fists if you fall. To be fair, I’ve only been ice skating once. It was with school and I was paired up with my bully so the whole thing was very tense. That might also be why I’ve only been once. Dancing on Ice is Strictly with knives. Terrifying and super-exciting television. And my bully is definitely not in it. She was ungainly and held on to the sides a lot.
The line-up this year is great. The usual brilliant mix of serious people (Funny! What if they fall over?!), older people (Scary! What if they fall over?!) and some young ones I have to google (and who’ll just get up again with their young hips and elasticity).
And I’ve never kept my teenage crush on Phillip Schofield a secret. Someone I know was writing a Christmas card to my dad and asked, “Is his Philip one l or two ls?”. And I trotted out, as if it were the most normal thing in the world, “Two for Schofield, one for dad”.