This column first appeared in the Manx Advertiser.
I received an unusual request concerning this column last week.
It was from a chap who was performing an important task concerning the welfare of a loved one and, in return, he said: ‘Don’t forget to mention me in your column. My name’s Mark.’
So, job done.
But it got me thinking, as one does, about whether there are many famous Marks.
I asked Mrs Speller if she could think of any. She suggested Mark Antony.
To my shame, my reply was: ‘The guy who went out with J-Lo?’
Her response was: ‘Well, him as well, but I was thinking of the historical figure who Shakespeare happened to write about.’
With what was becoming an increasingly apparent paucity of genuinely famous Marks in my sphere of knowledge, it’s even more disappointing that I couldn’t even think of the most interesting Mark Antony.
And the next one I came up with after that was Mark Fowler from EastEnders.
Not even a real person. Nor, for that matter, is the fictional character still ‘alive’.
He did, of course have arguably the worst exit in the history of soap operas, jumping on a motorbike with his new biker jacket. As he rode off into the sunset and, presumably, the Aids related death that the script writers decided was his fate, we could see the word ‘Walford’ emblazoned on the back of the jacket.
I get the feeling that Julie Hesmondhalgh, who played Hayley in Coronation Street, was obviously more popular with her script writers than Todd Carty was at EastEnders, as her departure was unforgettably wrought with emotion, as opposed to a barely suppressed guffaw.
Anyway, this doesn’t really help find me any more significant Marks.
Somebody mentioned Mark Twain, who apparently wrote a book or two.
And I have a brother called Mark, although sometimes I almost forget his name, too.
Then I pondered if there were any well-known Marks in the Isle of Man.
I Googled ‘Mark Isle of Man’.
The top ranked answer was some guy called Mark Cavendish.
Now, I’ve heard of him.
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