If you listen to the Mark Cummings breakfast show on BBC radio Gloucestershire then you might have heard of the 'Phone without a home' segment. At about 8:45 every morning, Mark calls a mobile phone that is passed from friend to friend around the county - giving him the opportunity to talk to someone new every day, and to catch a glimpse of life around Gloucestershire.
On Friday 12th of September 2014, it was my turn to answer...
Tags: Tattoo (Visual Art Form) BBC Radio Gloucestershire Mark Cummings Radio interview Tattooed Librarian
Added: 2 months ago
MARK CUMMINGS: Uh, we'll talk Onion Fayre, it's a biggie. Gets bigger and better every single year, in a moment. First of all, it's the "Phone with No Home" ... We were with an author yesterday. We had a schoolteacher from Dean Close, then it went over to Culford, then it's come back to Gloucester. Yesterday it was Joe Brown, an author from Cheltenham, so I don't know who Joe has sent it to but I will ring the Phone with No Home and with any luck ... someone fascinating will answer. Let's see what they're up to this weekend, see where they are. I wonder if we're still in--
[the sound of a phone ringing can be heard]
MARK CUMMINGS: I wonder if we're still in Cheltenham, as well. So here we go.
[the phone rings again]
DAVID THOMPSON: Hello?
MARK CUMMINGS: Oh, hello! You've just answered the Phone with No Home! My name's Mark, you're live on the radio, what's your name?
DAVID THOMPSON: Hello, Mark! Hi, uh, my name is David ... Uh, David Thompson.
MARK CUMMINGS: Not David Thompson. N-Not--
DAVID THOMPSON: David Thompson, indeed.
MARK CUMMINGS: Not "the" David Thompson?
DAVID THOMPSON: No! I know there are an awful lot of David Thompsons, and there are entire websites based on David Thompson, but no. This is "a" David Thompson.
MARK CUMMINGS: But a ... "a" could be the real David Thompson.
DAVID THOMPSON: It could. Well actually, I am "the" real David Thompson, just "this" David Thompson. Not necessarily the famous one.
MARK CUMMINGS: Now, are you in Cheltenham this morning?
DAVID THOMPSON: Um, actually, I'm just outside. I'm at home in Crestbury.
MARK CUMMINGS: Okay, so we've just leaked it out of Cheltenham.
DAVID THOMPSON: Mm hmm.
MARK CUMMINGS: So we're going slightly north at the moment, ever so slightly north.
DAVID THOMPSON: Yes, ever so slightly.
MARK CUMMINGS: David Thompson--
DAVID THOMPSON: Just underneath the hills.
MARK CUMMINGS: I'm just trying to work out your age, actually. I'm trying to work out how old is David Thompson? How old is he? Well, let's ... Andy's with us, who's gonna talk about the Onion Fayre. How old do you think this fella is, Andy? Just listen, what you--
ANDY OFFORD: Ooh, I was just puttin my phones on, so uh--
MARK CUMMINGS: Mm.
ANDY OFFORD: Hmmm ... I haven't a clue.
MARK CUMMINGS: David, David Thompson ... Just David Thompson, just tell me what you do for a living and then we're gonna work out how old you are.
DAVID THOMPSON: I'm a subject librarian. I look after media, arts, and photography at the University of Gloucestershire.
MARK CUMMINGS: What'cha reckon? I think forty-something, early forties.
ANDY OFFORD: Ooh. Well, he's--
MARK CUMMINGS: Don't be flattering.
ANDY OFFORD: If we said ... Well, if I said thirty-something, he's gonna be very flattered.
MARK CUMMINGS: Yeah, he's gonna be incredibly--
DAVID THOMPSON: Ooh, yes.
ANDY OFFORD: So, I would say ... I-I would say, what? Mm, mid to late fifties?
MARK CUMMINGS: Everyone have a go at home, just shout it out!
DAVID THOMPSON: Ooh! Mid to late fifties? Oh, thank you!
MARK CUMMINGS: His voice goes up there, doesn't it?
ANDY OFFORD: It does!
MARK CUMMINGS: Forty ... Forty seven. How old are ya?
DAVID THOMPSON: Oh good lord, that's very close, yes! Uh, forty seven!
MARK CUMMINGS: Oh, brilliant! Okay ... Your job again is what?
DAVID THOMPSON: I'm a subject librarian. Academic subject librarian. I look after all of the media, the arts and actions courses.
MARK CUMMINGS: Take this as a compliment ... You sound like it as well.
DAVID THOMPSON: Oh great, thank you.
MARK CUMMINGS: No no, your voice--
DAVID THOMPSON: Well actually, what you probably can't hear from ... the phone is the fact that I'm also the most tattooed librarian in Gloucestershire, very possibly in England, and vying for the title of most tattooed librarian in the world.
MARK CUMMINGS: Most what-ted?
DAVID THOMPSON: I hope I don't sound too much like a librarian ...
MARK CUMMINGS: So, most what-ted librarian?
DAVID THOMPSON: Tattooed.
MARK CUMMINGS: Oh, tattooed! Oh gosh!
DAVID THOMPSON: Yes, yes.
MARK CUMMINGS: I wasn't expecting--
DAVID THOMPSON: Although I suppose that kind of fits, being an arts librarian, I have turned myself into a work of art. So, it's kind of--
MARK CUMMINGS: How many tattoos have you got?
DAVID THOMPSON: Oh, just the one. It's just that it actually stretches ... well, at the moment, it stretches from my neck and covers my entire torso and my arms, and actually the work is going to continue all the way down to my feet, as well. So, it will be head to toe, when we're finished.
MARK CUMMINGS: Y'know, when this conversation started--
DAVID THOMPSON: Yeah, so far, so ...
MARK CUMMINGS: Can you send us a photo?
DAVID THOMPSON: Of course I can, yes.
MARK CUMMINGS: Thank you.
DAVID THOMPSON: Um, actually, I've got some lovely photos taken by my various photography students. I tend to be very popular--
MARK CUMMINGS: Okay.
DAVID THOMPSON: Uh, whenever they're having to do portraiture and assignments on portraiture, and they all end up coming and asking me if I would pose for them, because it's interesting to try and take photos. So I've got some very nice ones I can send you.
MARK CUMMINGS: Brilliant.
DAVID THOMPSON: I think, if you'd like.
MARK CUMMINGS: Will you do that? Cummings at--
DAVID THOMPSON: I will indeed.
MARK CUMMINGS: Hang on the line, we need your phone number, because you--
DAVID THOMPSON: Okay.
MARK CUMMINGS: This conversation didn't go where I'd think it was gonna go. It went into a delightful area!
DAVID THOMPSON: Oh!
MARK CUMMINGS: David Thompson, thank you so much! Have a great weekend, pass the phone onto someone without a tattoo for Monday, that would be fantastic.
DAVID THOMPSON: I will indeed!
MARK CUMMINGS: Thank you! Bye bye, take care.
DAVID THOMPSON: Good times, okay!
David Thompson is Subject Librarian to the school, with responsibility for Fine art, Photography and Illustration; he also supports the Communications and Production courses at Park. David studied Philosophy and Theology at Heythrop College (University of London), but started working in libraries whilst still at school. He joined the University in 1992, completed an MA in Library and Information Science in 1995 and gained Professional Chartership in 1999. He has been Subject Librarian for Fine Art since 2000. David loosely describes himself as: "a vegetarian, tattooed pagan, author, geek and sometime artist". He lives in Prestbury with His partner Geoff, a talkative Amazon parrot, two siamese cats, and a pair of snakes...