Edinburgh Festival '99: Diary

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The Independent Culture
THIS IS my fifth visit to the Fringe. People often ask if I get homesick but as I spend most of my working life travelling, and Edinburgh is the only place I ever spend 26 consecutive nights in the same bed, I look on it as a rare chance to have some kind of home - especially since every year I return to the same humble abode. Most performers get involved in a terrible scramble to find lodgings and an unlucky few will end up in a B&B somewhere nearer to Carlisle than Edinburgh. Not so bad if you fancy popping out to see the Eddie Stobart haulage depot, but terrible if you need a cab home after your show. Being such a regular inhabitant of the flat, I have made a few simple home improvements that would put Carol Smillie and her team to shame. Edinburgh has far too many stairs and I have gone some way to overcoming this difficulty with the installation of the Gorman Pole (Pat. Pending). It is similar in design to the Bat Pole. Every evening at about ten past seven I open the wardrobe and slide down the pole contained therein. Moments later I arrive on stage at The Pleasance in time for the 7.15pm start. The really clever part comes after the show, when I use the pole to return home. This is a largely upward journey and I am indebted to a Mr Dyson for his part in the design. You might think I use all this technology for purely selfish ends. Not at all. I spearhead a campaign to clean up this fine city. Each night I slide down to visit the dungeons. The first cell contains a few men I caught fly-posting last week. Every night they are made to paste up posters ten deep on the inner walls of the cell. Slowly but surely the room is shrinking inwards and the villains will eventually be crushed in a room of paper and glue. This is almost as much fun to visit as the second cell, which contains several jugglers and a slowly lowering ceiling.

Dave Gorman is at The Pleasance, Venue 33, until 30 Aug (0131 556 6550)