So, yesterday I did my interview at Resonance FM. My appointment was for 11, but because I have a ( it turns out) regressive punctuality gene, I rocked up at about 10.30 and sat in the nearby Pret and had a coffee. I'm pretty sure that sitting in a Pret a Manger does not qualify you as a boulevardier, the boulevard in question being Borough High Street. Resonance FM are located in one of the yards behind a building on the High Street, one which is so typical of this area reflecting its quite recent adaptation from housing businesses in the fur, hops and tea trades to radio stations and coffee shops, a possible metonym for much of central London.
Resonance's studio was busy when I arrived. The red light was on, very exciting. Inside was my colleague from the University of Westminster, Dr. Rachel Aldred who was speaking about her project to understand more about near misses of accidents that cyclists experience on their daily rides. When they had all finished it was my turn to be interviewed by Jack Thurston, the host of The Bike Show.
I am doing a radio interview next Thursday for Resonance FM with Jack Thurston of The Bike Show. This is an interesting thing for me. I'm used to speaking in public for small or larger audiences, but sitting across the room with just one person and a hidden audience is something new and a little intimidating. To the rescue comes my next door neighbour Simon Mattacks who just happens to be one of the country's leading voice-over artists and voice coaches. So I nipped next door to sit in his studio and have him rehearse me for an hour or so. The first thing he told me was that I would need a glass of water. My God!, I needed about a gallon of water. There is something about it, nerves etc. that turns your throat dry. With help from Simon , I got my earphone levels right and started to make a bit of sense. What was clear to me, which was I suppose bleeding obvious, was that I needed to be really precise about what I was going to say. Well I thought I knew the contents of my book pretty well. I wrote it don'tcha know. It turns out, not really. So how did cycling contribute to interwar modernity? Well, cough, it's very complicated, um, y'know. Anyway, there is time for a bit of rehearsal before the day and it turns out that Jack wants to hear some readings from one of my primary sources, an odd book by an odd guy who cycled round suburban London in the late 1930s. That should be more straightforward. I will report back on the outcome. (Only if successful)