Hi and welcome to the first instalment of Daddy Goes Bananas (Parenting Unpeeled.) I’ve been wanting to do this for such a long time so excuse me if I become ridiculously over excited. I thought as a first post I’d let you know a bit about me and how I got here, and I don’t mean via the 142 bus from Brent Cross shopping centre! I’m a children’s entertainer called Mr Banana Head which I absolutely love. It gives me a chance to act like a 5 year old all day long which comes very naturally to me as I truly feel like I’m a child living in an adult’s body. I’m married to Rachel and have two daughters, J and K who are 11 and 8.
My only previous foray into the world of entertainment was my school production of the Diary of Anne Frank when I was 14. I played Mr Kraler, a mature man in his forties who helped the Franks hide away. It wasn’t the most convincing performance as my voice still hadn’t broken and I was only 4 ft 7 at the time. Every time I came on stage and said a line the audience laughed. I remember thinking at the time how funny I must be and felt very proud. Looking back now I realise it must have been like watching Mickey Mouse on helium complete with excessive amounts of grey make up and spray plastered all over my face and hair. To be fair I think I only got the part as my teacher Mrs Rhodes took pity on me and appreciated my excessive enthusiasm for the role.
In my working life I’ve previously been a chef, encyclopedia salesperson, recruitment consultant, car salesman and business manager, charity travel bookings manager, counsellor and Weight Watchers leader. When the girls were 6 and 3 and had a joint party at home I decided to entertain them and their friends. I made it up as I went along, had a great time doing it and the reaction was pretty good from both the children and the parents. It certainly wasn’t the unmitigated disaster that was Sam Fox and Mick Fleetwood presenting the Brits. Seeing and hearing the children laugh was a great feeling and something I knew I wanted to experience again. I did their parties the following year and then decided I wanted to make a go of it. I fitted in parties at the weekends whilst I was working as a bookings manager and then a year later took the leap to become a full time Banana Head and haven’t looked back since. Nothing I have done brings me the joy and feeling of euphoria I experience entertaining children.
Being a Banana Head, dad, husband, socially awkward man and child living in an adult’s body is never boring. Having a history of freakishly improbable accidents also keeps me on my toes. Over the coming posts I’ll share things that I hope you’ll find interesting about being a Banana Head, parent and husband. You might laugh, you might cry, you may even shake your head sadly in disbelief. That’s it for now, thanks for reading and back again soon.