Fancy Footwork


BMW Bike – a Creative Commons image from

Don Mackie‘s going for it full throttle – he’s replaced his tricycle with a motorcycle and he’s revving up the audience at The Tap, whilst I …

I, Jay Cool, the one and only once-was-ginger Blogger Extraordinaire, am …

… very busy eyeing up the most magnificent pair of red shoes.

Yes, Mackie, it may well be that, you are still suffering from PTSD, after your fourteen-year-old self mistook talk of a ‘menstrual cycle’ for an especially-adapted-for-adolescents’ ‘bike’! And you may well still be receiving stress counselling, after you became the laughing-stock-victim of all the girls in your secondary school. But, that particular incident really was a very long time ago, and we all understand about ASD (Look it up! Google it!) these days, and this … This is in the here and now.

And, the objects of my own fourteen-year-old self’s desires have chosen this moment, the here and now, right here in the Tap to present themselves to me.

And they really, truly are the most magical shoes ever.

I’m back. Back in the past. I’m wearing these shoes and I’m pirouetting a la pointe, twizzling and turning all around the punters in the Tap. And the applause I’m receiving for my performance? The applause is deafening. So many fans. Unbelievable.

‘Moira Shearer Red Shoes’ a CC Licensed image

I remember my ballet teacher’s best advice. Look up and smile. Make them believe that you are enjoying every moment. Make them believe that you are enjoying the excruciating pain emanating from your big toe, because you ignored my advice to stuff the ends of your ballet shoes with sheep’s wool. Smile. Beam. Enjoy. So I look up. And I smile.

I smile. But, no-one is smiling at me. They are all laughing. And they are not even laughing at me, or even looking at me. They are all laughing with Mackie.

Don Mackie, alias Weeble

Laughing at Mackie’s jokes,  his one-liners, his gags, his wit – his invitations to join him for an overnight stay in his lodgings. No-one is interested in Jay Cool. No-one cares about my own trauma – my failed ambitions to be a ballerina! And the red shoes escape – slip away into the crowd. Closure evades me yet again. I didn’t even get to see who was wearing them! Was it a comedian? Was it a punter? Was it PJ, our emcee?

PJ – Emcee Extraordinaire

Now, I will never know! Help me out, folks! Who wore red shoes at The Brewery Tap, for Wednesday’s comedy gig? (Facebook your answers to PJ, at the Suffolk Punch Comedy Club’s web page! The reward? Free entry at February’s gig!*)

But Mackie, bless him! I guess he is quite funny in a not-quite-yet-ripened-apple kind of a way. Because although he lives with past regrets and pines after closure, he’s still just a boy really. All short, chubby-cheeked and cuddly. A cabbage-patch boy. There’s still time, Mackie – you can do it! You can overcome! You can move on! One last guffaw from the Kojak lookalike in the audience, and you’re here; you’re here in the moment. And then you’re off. Move on Mackie – because it’s time for Ruth Wright. Time for Ruthie!

Ruthie, alias Mum

And I can relate to Ruthie. She’s not the one with red shoes but, like myself, she has qualifications galore – boxes full to the brim with awards (in her case a Brownie first aid badge, and in mine – a pre-Grade 1 ballet badge)! And, like myself, in spite of an all-consuming talent for the organisation and labelling of collectables, can’t even recall her own name! She knows that she gets called ‘Mum’ an awful lot by others, and that she calls herself Mrs Tom Hardy – but her actual name, her real name, eludes her. I too get called ‘Mum’ far too many times for my own comfort, and I call myself Jay Cool, but my real name? Chooky? Ginger Minger? Squirrel Bush (No, idea where that one came from!)? And my most recent acquisition? Pod? Would someone please explain to me how the great one and only Blogger, acquired the name of Pod?

Yes Ruthie’s a real Mrs Tom Hardy – a real barrel of laughs! I mean, why would anyone want to be take on the name of a depressive who killed off an entire family in a suicide pact, rather than have to come up with a decent ending for a set? I’m so quick with inferring the real meaning of jokes that I’m full of sympathy for young Mackie. It must be so draining, being on the spectrum, and constantly having to ask the best of comics to fully explain their gags, and to have to then relay how difficult it is to place one’s feet inside someone else’s shoes.

Creative Commons Licensed image –

Inside someone else’s red shoes. Someone else’s elusive red shoes. Find the wearer. Bring me closure! Please!

Copyright owned by Jay Cool, alias Pod, February 2018

If you enjoyed reading this blog, come and be blogged about! Get yourselves to The Brewery Tap, from 8pm, first Wednesday of every month, in East Street, Sudbury, Suffolk. Grab the mic and offer up your best one-liner during the open mic slot, or just sit back and soak up the best of Suffolk Punch Comedy Club comedians, whilst Jay Cool invites your shoes to a modelling shoot. (It’s okay, PJ, the Booker and Emcee now has a professional photographer, Rob Lee, for the portrait shots. And, he’s even employed a regular punter as a Technician (Joe Warren sorts out the sound system for the fake laughter!) So, that leaves me free to focus on the familiar – the fancy footwork – my skills are needed down below!) 

P.S. If you need a genuine photographer, get in touch with Rob Lee: or tweet @Robrhlphotolee

* Disclaimer: Entry to gigs at our regular monthly venue, The Brewery Tap, is free for all! But, donations for Prostate Cancer Research are gratefully received.

Images: The ‘Red Shoes Dancer’ image is in the Public Domain, labelled as Creative Commons Licensed, and is also available at
All the photos of comedians are the author’s own and taken at The Brewery Tap.

Published by The Silly-Savvy Salopian

Freelance writer and descendant of the cave dweller and outlaw, Humphrey Kynaston. Banished from Shropshire for my eccentricity, I have made my home in Suffolk. I write poetry, short stories, travel journals, comedy gig reviews and non-fiction articles. My wish is to write my way back into the heart of my birth land. All writing commissions (and free holidays in Shropshire!) considered.

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