‘I am a bit Thor, but that’s how I ride my bike ...’


Sometimes it is not easy having a secret identity. I mean, it’s not as though I was bitten by a radioactive spider, have a bat cave, or am the son of Odin recently transported into Southern Oxfordshire.

I am a bit Thor, but that’s just the way I ride my bike.

I feel I need to recap a little and tell my back story, like what they do in the movies to reveal how those with secret identities got their power.

Incidentally, I have just realised that I DO in fact have a common trait with comic book heroes. We all start with the same letters, don’t we? Peter Parker, Bruce Banner, Dan Dare, The Thamensian. See?

So then, that back story. Almost two years ago I spoke with the editor of this newspaper about doing a regular little column based on events in the town.

I said that I wanted to do it for free purely because I thought it might be fun to observe the town anonymously.

He told me that as long as it was local, topical and vaguely amusing then we would give it a try for a couple of weeks to see how it went on. He would buy me the occasional cup of tea as a reward.

It has proved very thirsty work so far, but I suspect he will buy me that cuppa one week.

I sometimes think there is not a person in Thame who doesn’t know who writes this. Every week someone rumbles it (Hi Judith and David). But the other week my secret world almost came crashing down.

I was doing something vaguely newsworthy, and a number of reporters were on the scene.

All was going well but then a reporter approached us with his glamorous photographer in tow. “Can we interview you for the Thame Gazette?” they asked, merrily snapping pictures without asking.

I felt like Kate Middleton and wished I’d done my hair that morning.

And to my horror the person with me said “great, get my good side” and started doing interviews.

Only, I was there to write the report for THIS page, but wanted to do it secretly.

What was I to do? Should I confess to the reporter and ask him not to run the story?

I would deny my friend their moment of glory. Should I write my story anyway and reveal my secret identity?

Life would never be the same, plus I would get punched by people for being rude about them in the past.

So instead I have taken a risk. Last week the Thamensian appeared in these very pages, her true identity there for all to see.

Dig out last week’s edition and try and spot me. Get rooting through those bins. It’s time to play Where’s the Wally.

Anyone who gets it right wins a cuppa from the Editor. Eventually.