There are debates going on at Eric The Unread’s and at Harry’s Place about which of three of Eric’s teenage badges he should be most embarrassed about: Marillion, Lenin, or Greenpeace. This is indeed a question worthy of discussion. Amusingly, of the three corresponding Wikipedia entries I link to, only the Marillion one is undisputed.

My teenage years were slightly different. I have always been fashionable like Jeremy Clarkson is fashionable. As an undergraduate I remember coming back on the coach from a rag trip to London and answering the mass Morrissey/Marr singalong with my solo rendition of Don Henley’s inspired Motown pastiche Not Enough Love In The World. About a quarter of the students at my college were in possession of a Smiths album and at least one piece of Soviet Communist iconography. In the past I have believed in a bearded man in the sky who could forgive me all my sins, but I am not and never have even any kind of Communist. Studying alongside these sophs removed any remaining temptation. I arrived at university sporting a (by then seriously out-of-date) afro and a bow-tie.

Margaret Thatcher gives a Second Biggest Hair in Britain certificate to the Geek

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At the same time, on my lapel, I wore a Robertson’s Jam Gollywog brooch.

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This was the beginning of a long, lonely, and pointless career of messing with the minds of posh, white, idiot Lefties—and baiting the sort of people who think Orange Juice played funk.