Nick – if you are not an aficionado of 80s pop as I am – was the singer in Haircut One Hundred. They had a few UK hits in 1981 and 1982 before Nick was chucked out of the band. I was devastated for a while, but it wasn’t long before I grew up a bit and became obsessed with boys with quiffs from Glasgow.
Watching the video for Love Plus One now, Nick makes me think of a just-pubescent Macaulay Culkin. Was he ever a sex symbol? I suppose he must have been. But in 1981 this Aran-jumper-wearing blond with the goofy grin was just the face of a band the 10-year-old me loved. I played Pelican West over and over, although strangely never really grasped the lyrics, which didn’t always seem to make a lot of sense.
Jump forward 23 years and I’m messing around on Twitter, telling people I’ve never met what I’ve had for dinner and so on, when I spot him. Nick Heyward! On Twitter! For nostalgia’s sake, I click ‘Follow’. And then I forget about it. I’m a binge tweeter, gorging on updates once or twice a week, and living in blissful ignorance of what the rest of the world is having for dinner the rest of the time. But then one day an email pops up in my mailbox – I have a new follower. And yes, it’s him. My childhood hero, following me on Twitter!
Suddenly I feel a bit awkward. He knows who I am. I know I don’t have to interact with him. He probably wouldn’t care what I had for dinner, even if it was a Kingsize Baked Bean*. And I’m only one of 12,000 people he follows. He’s clearly not choosy. But still…
So I watch and wait. Don’t rush into anything, Val. You don’t want to embarrass yourself. Each time I log on, and I spot a tweet from him, I have a look. I haven’t spotted his meal plans, although he must have had this at least once. He does post excellent photographs, and his captions are as whimsical and, if I’m being honest, as nonsensical as his HOH lyrics. A shot of a magnolia tree has “Monumental magnolia mammoth marvellous mower maypole moonbeam made moo ming”. Exactly what I was thinking, Nick.
Anyway, I’ve no plans to try to start chatting to him on Twitter. But it still gives me a little thrill to think that for a few seconds, as my childhood hero was clicking his ‘Follow’ button, he knew who I was.
*That’s a little in-joke for owners of Pelican West.