And twenty years ago on Thursday, on our first (and arguably only) Proper Date (since we were inseparable from that point forwards), K and I went to see Ivor Cutler in concert at Nottingham Playhouse. An unromantic choice, you might say; but I took the fact that K had even heard of Ivor Cutler – let alone liked him – to be a Very Good Sign Indeed.
It is therefore fitting that we commemorate this auspicious – and frankly astonishing – occasion (my previous record for a relationship was four months, and you could barely even count the fourth month as still being in a relationship) by attending another show. In just under an hour’s time, we’re heading off for London, in order to see the Cuban/Flamenco duo Bebo and Cigala at the Royal Festival Hall. This will not just be the duo’s farewell concert together, but also the last concert anywhere in the world by the veteran Cuban pianist Bebo Valdes.
We shall be spending tomorrow shopping for outfits, looking at pretentious contemporary art, and visiting a friend in hospital, before travelling up to Lincolnshire for a celebratory dinner à deux at the smallest Michelin-starred restaurant in the world (it only has three tables).
If you wish to raise a glass, then please do so after these few short words from our unwitting romantic benefactor, the great Ivor Cutler himself.
I ask you: twenty chuffing years. (That’s fifty in Gay Years, of course.) If anybody else says “role model”, I’ll personally throttle them. But, you know, I’m secretly quite proud.