Comedian Chris Sievey (aka Frank Sidebottom) died last week.
With his outsized, cartoon, papier mache head and his whimsical flights of fancy, Chris's creation Frank Sidebottom was a real one-off. Frank was a showman and singer who never hit the big time but believed he sort of had; think of a slightly angrier and more ridiculous and frustrated John Shuttleworth and you're sort of there.
It was a truly fantastic comic creation.
Author Jon Ronson, who in the early days used to play keyboards in Frank's backing band, was on the radio at the weekend lamenting the passing of his former mate and told a great story.
Apparently Chris (with full Sidebottom head on) and Ronson were touring and driving down Edgware Road in London on the way to a gig when Chris demanded that he pull the van over and briefly park up. Ronson duly obliged and Chris in Frank persona and head rolled down the window and buttonholed one bemused passerby.
'Excuse me, mate. Is this London?'
'Yes,' replied the slightly confused fella.
'Well can you tell me where you want this wood?' asked Chris in Sidebottom mode.
I don't think I've heard anything more ridiculous or funnier. Ever.