Oh this bizarre and wonderful city. Only ‘neath the grey skies of London could you behold such a sight. In the shadow of the London Eye, 52-year-old grandad Derrick Evans yesterday lead two hundred of London’s most (fool?)hardy citizens through a leg-pumpingly, kaleidoscopically colourful performance of the Funky Chicken.
Mr Motivator is back. Yesireee, the madcap king of ’90s breakfast television is on a mission; a mission to get the people of London ‘off their fat asses’. This one-off, free, 30-minute outdoor workout was designed to aid Londoners wishing to shed those unwanted pounds (affectionately referred to as ‘holiday weight’ by the girl next to me) and to ‘really get people going in the New Year!’
Why? Because ‘people!…exercise is the greatest aphrodisiac in the world!’ screams Mr Motivator. As the cold January drizzle falls on these sodden Jubilee Gardens, I, for one, am not feeling too horny.
However, as the esteemed philosopher John Stuart Mill once said: ‘that so few now dare to be eccentric, marks the chief danger of our time’. In truth, Mr Motivator’s brand of eccentric, feel-good exercise is absolutely irresistible. One cannot help but laugh and smile as we are led through a cardiovascular workout that incorporates some of the daftest, campest and altogether zaniest dance moves London has seen since the last time the Village People played the late, great Astoria.
Passers-by stopped and stared. At one point, a small group of builders and a policeman wandered over to watch in amazement. It quickly occurred to me that all we needed was a Red Indian and we could have actually been the sodding Village People, but I didn’t want to press the subject.
Besides, Mr Motivator was taking us ‘up to the next level, people!’ If readers are in any doubt as to the content of this fabled ‘next level’, suffice to say that it contains a great deal of whooping, pelvic-thrusting, arse-smacking and imaginary horse-riding. As I smack my arse for the fourteenth time, I cannot help but think that there are private websites that cater specifically for this sort of thing.
Nevertheless, like head-banded moths to a spandex flame, we are transfixed. Our legs are pumping; our abs are flexing; our pecs are stretching; our dignity…surely waning. Yet still our numbers swell as this sweaty Pied Piper calls ever more children to his bass-pounding tune.
The 15-stone Australian man next to me is wearing a tutu, and I don’t even bat an eyelid. The star-jumping office worker in front of me is still carrying his umbrella and laptop. The old fella over there jiving like a madman is dressed like a town crier – oh wait, that is the London Town Crier (no, really). It’s quite unlike anything I have ever witnessed. Long live the eccentrics of this world. Long live Mr Motivator. It’s London at its best.