The many sides of Keith Harrison

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What's in a name?

Sharp-eyed readers may notice something different about this week's wit and wisdom.

First off, there's wit and wisdom.

Not only that but it's more manly, more macho, the testosterone is cranked up to 11. Kerrang!

I'm suddenly feeling less Blue Harbour and more Blue Stratos. Check it out up top. Yeah, that's right – I've had enough of being a Keith, especially Keith Harrison.

Goodbye to all those Orville jokes, now I can fly right up to the sky with a name which isn't an albatross around my neck. Say hello to the new improved me – Cougar, to friends and readers alike.

Cheggers has finally done for me and I've popped my old name off to that great swap shop in the sky.

Keith from the Subway advert, Keith from Accounts in The Office, Keith Lemon, Keith is always the figure of fun.


The low point came watching a Family?Guy repeat the other night when, in order to crack into a vault, they had to come up with 'the most unattractive male first name in the English language'.

Boom. You've guessed it. Open Sesame.

Very funny, I thought, as I cried myself to sleep several hours later.

In reality, I've never quite fitted in as a Keith. Googling the name throws up the following description: 'Strong, sexy, smart, funny, athletic.'


So far, so accurate. It's as if they can see me.

But then it adds 'sounds like the name of an angel'.

Doh. Five outta six. So close.

And anyway, what angel? The Angel Keith, patron Saint of Phil Collins fans from the book of Genesis?

So now I'm Cougar. Cougar's got more bite, drives a Capri/XR3i/R-Type, can survive in the wild West Midlands, grills bears with Bear Grylls.

A quick google before I sign the forms and . . . oh. Apparently it's slang for 'a woman who seeks relations with younger men.'

Wrong way round.

Bear with.

Now I know what you're thinking; that's a blatant reference to Dante Alighieri's 14th century allegoric poem Divine Comedy, in which Hell is depicted as nine circles of suffering located within the earth with Judas Iscariot damned for all eternity at the very nadir.

And you'd be wrong, surprisingly.

It actually came to me watching the Champions League final last week when Bayern Munich had a Brazilian lad called Dante playing at the back.

He lunged into his man knee high, gave away a penalty and should have been sent off. Talk about kindred spirit.

Apparently, his father chose the name in honour of his favourite poet and philosopher and I can't help wondering how things would have worked out for me if my dad had applied the same criteria . . .

Well, I've got the bad hair, the unpaid tax bill and the tendency to go on and on for hours.

But as Roy Walker would say, it's good – but it's not quite right. Like an elephant being touched up by a tickling stick, I'm just not feeling it. I need something trendier, something more Saturday night.

Something that means I can sit next to Jessie J, use the word 'dope' and people won't see the irony.

Prepare Holly Willoughby to go weak at her knobbly knees . . .

No, you know what, it's just not me. I'm not some trendy hip DJ. I'm a child of the sixties when names were names and you knew where you stood. Give me the Gordons, the Normans, the Neils, the Simons, the Garfunkels.

The Montys, the Pythons, Johns, Pauls, Georges (but maybe not Ringo).

And, yes, the Keiths.

After all, if it's good enough for Keith Richards and Keith Moon, who in my generation can really argue?

Read Keith Harrison first in your Weekend Express & Star

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