Friday, 23 May 2008

A funeral

46 year old mother of two, journalist, dies after 8 years in a coma. The funeral is sad, obviously. The legendary Kelvin Mackenzie turns up. As do many from News International. We all go to the pub afterwards for the "After-party". Journalists exchanging stories. Photographer John Ferguson, one of the few successful black guys on "Fleet St" (still referred to as such although newspapers are no longer physically based there) talks about the time when he and the dead woman followed up a lead that the parents of one of the girls killed in a school coach crash in France, lived in Hammersmith. They go round there to pick up some photo's,"do a collect" of the dead girl and realise the parents do not know yet that their daughter is dead. (This was before mobile phones, emails, faxes). They are both pulled into the flat and more information is demanded. The parents call the police. Get the news confirmed. Horrible.
Other journalists join in: "yeah it's happened to us too, we are frequently the bearers of bad news and we try and beat a hasty retreat". As the drinking continues, the stories get harder...
I recommend "Stick it up your punter" and Piers Morgans' diaries "The Insider".

2 comments:

  1. You do not name names - this wasn't Justine Picardie was it? I loved her journalism, but think she passed away earlier than this... Such a loss, she was one of the very best in my opinion.

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