Morpheus on… Myself And Kiefer Sutherland

Kiefer and his father Donald have mirror-image careers. Donald, thanks to the reciprocal arrangement the actors’ unions of Canada and Britain had in the Sixties, began his on British TV, then graduated to films – while Kiefer began in films and graduated to TV.

And this is not unusual. As Kiefer himself says, the best WRITING these days is being done for television.

But a result of Donald working on British TV in the Sixties was that his son was BORN there – specifically, at St Mary’s Hospital, in Paddington, London.

Ah, St Mary’s – I recall it well; in 1969, I went to its Special Clinic in the basement, to get rid of my first dose of the clap (Kiefer was three, then). The place was ruled by a gay funster who relaxed the more nervous patients (not ME, I was cool) with jokes.

Opposite was a pub called the Fountains Abbey. Like St Mary’s, it was classic Gothic Victorian – and in 1977, I nearly COLLAPSED it. Allow me to explain; by now I was a DJ and ran a weekly Golden Oldie disco in the large music room upstairs.

And one night, as I was playing the Dave Clark Five’s “Glad All Over” I appealed to the audience (about a hundred people) to jump up and down in time to the drum beat.

“I’m feeling – WHOOMP, WHOOMP – glad all over…”

The whole floor bounced up and down alarmingly and I realised the phenomenon whereby marching soldiers are ordered to break step when they cross a bridge was coming into play. Further, I remembered the floor was only held up by skinny poles.

At this point, a sensible person would have faded the record out, made a lame excuse and put “McArthur Park” on. Instead, I yelled out, “AND AGAIN… let’s let the people downstairs know we’re HERE!!”

I figured if we all ended up across the road in St Mary’s A&E, at least ONE tabloid would HAVE to go with “Deejay brings the house down” – and I would be FAMOUS.

What an irresponsible dickhead I was.

But now I am 62. Today, Kiefer is WAY older than his Dad was back then. Indeed, his daughter, Sarah is almost as old. Currently the three form an acting dynasty – three generations – all working.

Meanwhile, St Mary’s (opened 1851) has been expanded, but the original part is still there – as is the Fountains Abbey (orig. est. 1823) – although it’s been smartened up a bit since my day.

According to its web-page, the place is stepped in tradition – I think they mean STEEPED. And apparently, they still hold functions upstairs.

I just hope the deejays avoid playing DC5 records…


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by cyrusquick on February 3, 2015 at 9:46 pm

    It is this sort of fascinating personal history items that are the life and soul of the web-log world. I very much admire your brave admission that you were an irresponsible dickhead. That is a most noble confession. But your poor judgement was of the sort that could at least add color and adventure to a story on movie or TV.

    I have only items that would score as casebook entries, and rather boring ones at that, for a loony-doctor in the suburbs. So I have to say “Well done, son!” At least you NEARLY made front page news. It was a shame but, oh well…

    I can just see the sub-heading. It would have said: “Brave DJ dives in to save jivers” above a story about how you ripped off your headphones and crawled under the wreckage to hold up the slowly-collapsing floor with your thinly-shirted back, nails and splinters digging in, whilst rescuers hauled out the dancers in the nick of time…

  2. Posted by Vincent on February 6, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    Sounds like an episode of “Holby City” (is that thing still on?) 🙂

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