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I wish my life was more like TV, says Bury St Edmunds columnist Michael Apichella

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There are lots of arguments about the relative merits of TV. Some folk say watching’s detrimental because it takes up too much valuable time. Others say it’s a great educational tool, a virtual window on the world. Perhaps, but there are definitely four aspects of TV I’d love to have in my life.

First, laugh tracks. Although producers increasingly recognise viewers don’t need prompting to appreciate when something’s amusing, I see some real value in canned laughter.

Often, I try to use humour to put people at their ease. For instance, when I’m asked for my surname, I always say, it’s A-P-I-C-H-E-L-L-A, pronounced Smith.

Michael Apichella (7204487)
Michael Apichella (7204487)

Other times I spell out A-P-P-L-E J-E-L-L-Y. Then I wait for the giggle. More often than not, I merely confuse folks. If I only had a laugh track! Then people would know I was trying to be funny.

Next, TV characters ... they have so many problems. Scandals. Zombies. Amnesia. Some even get mixed up in robberies, gunfights and much worse.

But not to worry. Regardless of how sticky the wicket, it’s practically guaranteed it’ll be resolved in about an hour or so. Then everyone kisses and makes up, regains their identity, or otherwise goes to jail, and all is well. Who couldn’t use that?

Consider scripting. With an ingenious Oxbridge graduate writing reams of appropriate heart-rending lines for me to memorise, imagine the problems I’d avoid. Entire speeches or unforgettable one-liners would come to mind when desperately needed, just like on TV!

And this brings me to ads. From miracle ointments to companies happy to lend me enough dosh to clear all my debts, TV ads are a virtual Utopia. Got a pressing need? Buy a product. Sorted!

If only my life was more like TV.

Strictly Come Ceilidh...

My first ceilidh was on a blustery day beneath a huge marquee on the shores of Scotland’s Loch Long. There was toe-tapping music, dancing and boundless fun. If you enjoy the fiddle, accordion, drum and guitar of an authentic Gaelic knees-up, come to Moreton Hall Community Centre on Friday, March 15 at 7 pm to hear Adam & the Shipsters – the UK’s most in-demand Ceilidh band (pictured).

The word Ceilidh (pron. Kaylee) means “gathering” or “party.” According to Bury event organiser Sharon Cuffe “The beauty of a ceilidh or barn dance is that they’re social dances. Everyone can take part, young or old, experienced dancers to beginners, and even those with two left feet!

“Our ceilidh band comes with an experienced caller who will talk you through the moves prior to each session. It’s back-to-basics, good, old fashioned fun that’ll make you feel like you’ve had a workout for a week. Flat shoes are recommended!”

Another organiser, Caroline MacCaville, says don’t be shy. It’s all for a good cause. “Money raised goes towards supporting thousands of scientists, doctors and nurses to accelerate progress in the fight against over 200 cancer types.”

Cancer research is important in this day and age of NHS and private funding cuts to crucial medical research. “Cancer can affect anyone. Work undertaken by Cancer Research UK indicates that by 2030, one in two people currently alive will have some form of cancer during their lifetime,” said Caroline. Call 07551 767999 or email maccaville1@btinternet.com to book.

Feeling loony?

An enormous seven-metre spherical moon sculpture will be installed at The Apex by artist Luke Jerram. “The Museum of the Moon” exhibition is free, February 19-23, 10am to 4pm, excluding the afternoon of February 19. It marks the 50th anniversary of the first US lunar landing. Guaranteed you’ll be over the moon!