My big secret unhinted-at announcement.

It’s: My name is Alex and I play bowls.

(I’ll write a bit more about this tomorrow)


  1. Oooohhh!!!


  2. Bloody hell, congratulations! 🙂

  3. (From Amazon) “…he hopes to repeat this success both on the rock stage and on the bowling green. He is 39.”

    39? Really? I would have expected 40s at least. On reflection, you don’t go on about all the things that are wrong with your teeth, back, legs etc. so perhaps 39 is realistic.

    Although all rock stars lie about their age. Don’t know about bowlers, though.

  4. all together now: “Hello, Alex!”

  5. Alex? Who the fuck is Alex?

  6. Strangely sparse little bio there, too. Is that whole lack of achievement thing getting in the way again, Alex?

    Born in Essex and moved to Norfolk – thus raising the IQ of both…oh, no, wait, my mistake – actually just Essex…

  7. I’m not falling for this Alex thing, I’m getting the Sunday Times’ best dirt diggers on unearthing the real you!!!!

    According to Amazon, “people who bought this also bought, GWAOTM”. Who would have thunk that eh?

  8. Ooh get YOU!!! Congratulations!

  9. Wow. And, congratulations. And, lots of other stuff as well. Off to Amazon!

  10. Thank you everybody. The ironic thing is that I AM NOT EVEN BLOODY 39 YET. Because I forgot that it would be on there before it was actually available, if you see what I mean.

    I will write a bit more about it tomorrow. And then probably go on about it every day for the next grillion years.

  11. Congratulations on the successful delivery and, if I may point out, there are post-natal classes these days that do wonders with those pesky last 10 lbs.*

    *Except those that come by the insidious action of “The Odd Pint” which are, decades of experimentation has shown, entirely unshiftable so good luck with that.

  12. This is “literally”* the best news I have ever heard. You will be a top-selling author and I can talk about how I know you, etc. It will be like knowing Lord Jeffrey Archer, but with better books and higher moral standards.

    * pun intended!!!!

  13. If this were true, I’d be over the moon excited for you but you’ve pulled our legg so often I don’t know.

    I mean, I’m really, really excited and I want a copy, and I will shamelessly say so on my humble little blog, hoping someone would buy it for me [as I don’t own a credit card right now]…if all this were true.

    So please say it is.

    OMG. It looks as though it is true!!!

  14. So is the missus up the duff or no?

  15. Congratulations! Looking forward to reading it. Hope this doesn’t mean that the privatesecretdiary will come to an end…

  16. You let me call you Johnny to your bloody face. At two different events!

    And you are so 39 – you look older than me with your George Clooney salt and pepper hair and rugged outdoorsman’s bowling arms.

    Bloody bloggers. You can’t trust any of them.

    Actually, we can trust Anna Pickard. She has an honest ring to her.

    (At least until she finally publishes her toilet reading book and announces that her real name is Zoe Sanderson or Catherine Margolis, or she’s really a tubby bloke named Derek.)

    For the sake of Baby Serverlan I wish you every success.

  17. You are right to be sceptical, MB. After all, googling the name does not produce any returns of suitable pre-eminence to be our own beloved Jonny.

    Unless of course he’s this guy. I’d hate to live in a world where that could be true…

  18. Oh, well done. Proper publisher an’ all, not one of those staple-it-yourself jobs that everyone else does. Is the launch in the Village Pub?

  19. What NWM said, except for the bit about Lord Archer.

  20. I always read you as being more of an Alex.

  21. It’s a boy then cos it’s got balls, sorry I mean bowls.

  22. Damian – you mean your real name is ‘Damian’?!? *confused*

    NWM: Truly your puns light up the entire internet.

    Right – it is up on Amazon now ( ) and currently rising high in the BOWLS, BOWLING AND PETANQUE category. This is the big time, my friends… the big time.

  23. Well played, Colonel! You could bowl me over with a chicken feather. Well, okay, not really. It’s not really all that surprising. I mean, what are the odds that a talent such as yours could go unrecognised indefinitely? Nil. I hope you become obscenely rich. Is it true that Clooney is up for the lead? Now THAT would be yummy.

    Regards to the SuperChickens

    Aquiver no more

  24. I feel most pleased for you, I cannot imagine a book about bowls that I would rather read.

  25. But anyone who can operate a whois search has known for ages who you are. And the bowls-playing was a bit of a self-confession (from which I’m still unsure I’ve recovered).

    But congratulations on the imprint!

  26. Bowls? BOWLS??

    oh. er. I thought you said bowels. Sorry, wrong blog!

  27. When do I get the royalties?

  28. This is great, Jonn…er…Alex.

    But I can’t shake this feeling of disorientation, as if you had sat me down and told me I was adopted.

    What to believe now? Next you’ll be telling us that Short Tony is one of the Harlem Globetrotters.

  29. Oh, my word! Congratulations and that.

    Where the feck is Norfolk?

  30. so is the ltlp expecting?!!!!!

  31. I feel I’ve been duped and hoodwinked all these years. You should change your name to Jonny Billericay, like the Internet originally intended, to appease the befuddlement of the the masses.I suppose Mr. Mitt’s name isn’t really Mr. Mitt, either?

    Also, I am inclined to deduce that 39 is your pant size, or the size of your fomer(?) super secret hidden bookcase, not your age.

  32. P.S. Congratulations on the book, obviously. It took far too long.

  33. Spazmo has hit the nail on the head. I was going to liken it to discovering that Santa is actually just a man called Cedric sent to this particular grotto by the job centre.

    Also, Brennig has made me realise what a rubbish stalker I am, which is annoying! I have recovered some ground by discovering a photo on the book of faces which (a) confirms the head largeness but (b) makes Jonn-er-Alex look considerably more with-it than you’d expect. Again, rather a let-down!

    This book had better be good. (And, not, for example, rehashed entries from the blog.)

  34. Also, your “Contact me” page claims “I am too dignified to join my own Appreciation Society.” Yet now all the world can see this is completely untrue! Hah – I feel like I have uncovered a real-world scandal now. Can’t decide whether to tweet this or comment it. Perhaps this level of scandal demands both.

  35. Zoiks! At last a photo of the Scooby-doo door. It looks/looked fantastic.

  36. Well. I wrote you a lovely comment earlier in which I told you I’ve pre-ordered the book. And now you’ve dumped my comment. (Along with several others I remember reading.) Wish I had my $12 back.

    Poor Loser

  37. Hm.

    I certainly don’t delete comments – even rubbish ones and certainly not nice ones.

    The site crashed yesterday late afternoon (my time). It wasn’t just before then, was it?

    Otherwise I’m a bit stumped…

  38. Er – Leslie? You are looking at the wrong post. Your comment is right there where you left it, on the following day’s post.

  39. Dave the bad singer

    Congrats on the book Alex and also to your other half. I tweeted you about that the other day, so I guessed correctly!

    Now. About those royalties…

  40. >‘belle curve’

    love it.

    and congrats on the book — hope it goes well, mate.

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