In Which I Demonstrate How I Will Cheerfully Accept A Compliment, Even If It’s Not Even Remotely True

I was at a wedding last weekend. Well, strictly speaking it was a ‘civil partnership celebration’, but unlike the state of California, I don’t count same-sex couples as second-class citizens, so as far as I’m concerned it was a wedding.

Anyway, I’d made a bit of an effort for the occasion, and was wearing a new jacket-n-trouser-combo, so I was quite pleased when another guest told me I looked like someone famous.
“Really?” I asked, genuinely surprised.
“Yes,” he said. “That chap from TV… Patrick something… Patrick Macnee.”

I was amused by this, and images of the ever-debonair Macnee as John Steed in The Avengers ran through my mind.

“No, hang on, not Macnee,” he said. “Patrick… um…”
As he tried to recall the right name, I became pretty sure it was more likely to turn out to be Patrick Moore from The Sky At Night than Patrick Dempsey from Grey’s Anatomy.
“That’s it!” he said. “Patrick McGoohan!”

As an admirer of The Prisoner, this comparison also amused me (as did the fact that both chaps did some sterling work during what one might see as a classic age of British TV).

“I don’t really see it,” Mrs Soanes said to me a bit later that evening, and I’m afraid I have to agree with her. Not only is it slightly odd that someone might mistake Mr Macnee for Mr McGoohan, it’s also very hard to see many points of similarity between me and either of these two chaps.

Mind you, given that McGoohan was very sharply dressed much of the time in Danger Man and The Prisoner and was reportedly one of the first actors approached to play James Bond onscreen, and that Macnee in The Avengers is seen as sartorially very dapper to this very day, I am more than happy to assume the chap’s comments were related to the fact that I was wearing smart clothing.

The moral of this post? Like so many of us, I am more than happy when (to paraphrase A Midsummer Night’s Dream) compliments aimed at me, and truth, keep little company.


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  1. I daresay it was a reference to your sartorial slendour dear chap, rather than your fizzog. A man who is much talked about is always very attractive. One feels there must be something in him, after all.

  2. Thank you – very kind!

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