Say what you like about Tom Cruise, as the opening credits of Mission Impossible II proved, the man can climb. And if he can do it, I can. Next week I’m going to go to Paris…on the roof of the Eurostar with Jon Voight. But one delicate step at a time. This week I went climbing. Not proper climbing obviously—I’m not bonkers. At one of those new fangled climbing centres with knobbly walls, squishy floors and a coffee shop.
My ‘buddy’ (technical term) for the day was my friend and colleague Brandon. A patient, dependable sort of chap; the sort you want at the other end of the rope preventing you from falling to if not your death then into a hospital bed. With some experience under his harness he was able to show me the…well…the ropes.
I surprised myself. Finally a use for my oddly long limbs and strange flexibility. And given I weigh roughly the same as a packet of chocolate HobNobs I can support my weight with relative ease.
That’s not to say it wasn’t physically demanding. At the end of the session my hands were vibrating as fast as George Formby’s. And the morning after, muscles that I previously didn’t think I had were in spasm. But this was to be expected. No pain, no gain (actually, I’ve always thought that was a ridiculous saying. Passing GO for a £200 gain, no pain. Landing on Free Parking. No pain. I’m sure there must be other non-monopoly based examples).
The harness – Not especially comfortable, straps and buckles dangerously close to genitals.
The hippies – Some forget to wash.
The topless men – We know. We’re sure you worked very hard for it. Now put it away before we all simply orgasm from the mere sight of you.
The eco warriors – So I’m not allowed to urinate in an actual toilet? I have to use the urinal? Well sod off. I don’t even need to go and I’m flushing them all twice.
The Lycra – Not much, but that’s still too much isn’t it?
If you can bare the above, give it a go. When Martin Landau is chasing you down Mt. Rushmore, you’ll be grateful that you did.