Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Memory Keeping: Work Hard, Be Nice.


Today's is the 3rd [and, yes, final] of the 3 scrapbook pages I made documenting the 2.5hours I [and an audience of many!] spent in the company of Sherlock co-creator Mark Gatiss.

You can find the earlier pages here and here. And after this I'll never* mention it again.

[* And by 'never' I mean ... y'know, not for a whole wellllllll ... month? Maybe. It depends really ... ].

But for now ... indulge me?
It can be dangerous, meeting the people you admire. So they say.

Because well ... to put it bluntly: they might turn out to be a bit of a knob and you'll never be able to love whatever it was you loved about them ever again.

And when it's Sherlock that you love ... the stakes are high. So there was some mild peril involved in going to see Mark Gatiss 'in conversation' last December.

Fortunately for all in general he was every bit as charming and loveable as you could have wished him to be ... and, more specifically, he was wonderful for two things in particular: 

1. The first is that, throughout the interview, when talking about his childhood in Sedgefield [around 20 miles from where I live] he referred to his mother as his 'Mam'.

And so do my sister and I. [Well that's how refer to  our own mother ... not his ... that would be weird ...].

And 'Mam' is not a term everyone uses  to refer to their mother,  not even in our same local area. And you won't find it on greetings cards as a matter of course. And when you don't hear something very often you can begin to feel like you yourself should use something different. Something 'posher'. Like 'Mum'.

Then you hear Mycroft say it ... and that makes everything better! ;-)

2. The second thing is not only how patient he was answering questions - from 'young people' who basically asked the same question over and over again without listening to his last answer - but also for what was his ultimate advice to them.

Here it is as written on my page:

So, there you have it, advice from a man whose successes go before him: Work hard, be nice.

All very doable and comforting too ...

You don't need any special equipment to make a start.

In fact ... forget about those young folk who were asking ... I'm happy to take his advice myself:


I'd love to use the comments section here to compile the benefit of your combined wisdom so ... won't you share with us all:
  • What's the best - or maybe the simplest - piece of advice you've been given? 
  • And who offered it?  

See you soon. [Without Mark Gatiss for company this time ... I swear].



  1. I love this page because it documents something you enjoyed so much. It really pins it down in a concrete way. If that makes sense..what am I trying to say? that I like its specificity I think.

    Best advice? My Mum used to tell us to "think about something nice" when we were about to jump into the dentist's chair, or set out for an exam. Simple, but surprisingly effective.

  2. Love everything about this blog post, which is just perfection....a stunning LO, beautiful writing, a tale (or two or three), dreamy Mycroft/Sherlock thoughts as I read it, advice......brilliant, brilliant post. Thank you.

    Best piece of advice ever received? I can't think of one specific one, to be whole family definitely instilled 'Be kind' in to us, as a way of life......

    Now I'm seeing 'Work hard, be nice' in big, big letters on son-son's bedroom wall.....(am quite pleased, actually, that you've inspired me to think 'creatively' again....I was so down in the doldrums but feel somehow lighter, better, having read your beautiful post.....thank you xxxx)

  3. Hah hah, I so love the wit to bring to everyone of your posts and reading about Mark Gatiss is always fun. I have been to a number of book signings and fouind the same kind of thing happening too. I love how you have remembered that one comment because to be honest that is such an important thing to remember in life no matter what you want to do.
    Jo xxx

  4. I love your "bluntness" is still so kind and polite, fantastic page and I have to agree wholeheartedly with Mr Gatiss' advice, more people need to do that.
    As for the best bit of advice I've ever heard, came from my Mam (I say Mam too and I'm a toot further south and right the way across from you) "You should always listen to advice, but, you don't necessarily have to take it""
    Claire xx

  5. Great layout!! I love the slightly mixed up letters in the title! :)

    Thank you for your lovely postcard -- it is adorable. I love the sweet image and vintage-y vibe. Totally taped it up on my scrapbook room wall. :)

  6. Best piece of advice:
    Be yourself, everyone else is taken.
    Can't remember who said it originally, but a leader at a camp I was at when aged 16 wrote it in my book.

  7. My Mum always said 'do as you would be done by' or in other words; treat others as you would like to be treated :-)

  8. Actually, it was a former boss of mine who said - ask questions - that's how you learn.


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