Humour · Parenting

A list of people who I might allow to read my child a bedtime story. Or, an open letter to Shane Ritchie.

Richard Briers

Richard Briers - bedtime story

I’ll admit it, I’m a enormous fan of The Good Life and I often have it on while I fall asleep, so it’s a bit like a bedtime story in itsefl! I also have machinations of one day being just like Tom and Barbara (but it would be an awful lot of effort, doing all that work and maintaining that impish charm and Cheltenham Girls College accent, wouldn’t it?)

Richard Briers is the man who EVERYONE wants as their Grandad, isn’t he? Such a kindly old so-an-so, with a perfect voice for narration, to boot!

Amelie Poulain

Amelie Poulain - bedtime story

I don’t mean the actress, Audrey Tautou, I mean the actual character, Amelie. She is cute, sweet, almost totally unaffected by social convention and has an imagination that would put Hans Christian Anderson and the Brothers Grimm, collectively, to shame. Plus she has an adorable voice and a lovely French accent, which would be perfect for reading bedtime stories.


Jesus - bedtime story

I’m not picking Jesus for any religious reasons. I just think he was a super nice bloke who walked around trying to teach people that it would be, you know, much nicer if we all got along and behaved courteously to one another.

Plus, I’d like my kid to have another language and being the only one of her friends to speak Aramaic would be a great boast, wouldn’t it?!

People I DO NOT want reading a bedtime story to my kid.

Shane Richie

Shane Richie - bedtime story

Dear Shane Richie,

Why are you on my telly, reading the story for the Bedtime Hour? What do you think you are doing?

I understand that you may have a contractual obligation to the BBC, but this is not a good enough reason for you to sit on my screen, with your hand up a stuffed girrafes arse, talking in a weird, camp, cockney accent.

My child does not know who you are. I was born in 1984 and I barely know who you are. I’m vaguely aware of you having some sort of holiday camp (insert colour here)coat career, and then I think you may have seen married to some eighties “celebrity” like Cheryl Baker, or one of the Nolans, or something. But I still don’t see how this translates to a sideline in children’s narration.

I know you played some shit character in some shit soap or other, frankly I do my best to avoid such things. The day I heard that Larry Lamb was in Eastenders, I felt as though he was letting me down. Me, personally.

Could you do me a favour and steer clear of CBeebies from now on? No matter how much Andi (why, oh why, spell it with an I? That’s a different matter, though.) Peters BEGS you to perform the onerous task of reading the bedtime story, please think twice. I don’t to have to look you up on Wikipedia just so that I can explain to my daughter who you are, without the use of expletives.

If you could just do this one thing for me, I’d be really grateful.

Kindest regards


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