Anorak News | Being Frank

Being Frank

by | 3rd, November 2003

‘“YOU could say this is the greatest fight of my life.” So says Frank Bruno, boxer, panto dame and Renaissance man, if you know what I mean, ‘arry.

‘Behind You!’

And we do know what he means, since a pun on fighting his demons can never be far removed from a story about the boxer’s slide into mental illness.

This is no laughing matter. And the Sun, like us here at Anorak, resists the chance to scream the pantomime mainstay “Behind You!” in Bruno’s ear.

Instead, we, like the Sun, will listen stoically to how the illness manifested itself in the former boxing champion.

“I was obsessed with buying stuff,” says Frank, “and everything had to be in pairs.”

That’s easy enough with shoes and socks, but destined to raise an eyebrow when you do as Frank did and extend the spree to “caravans, lorries, tents, old people’s chairs – crazy stuff”.

“I also got to the point where I couldn’t leave the house without a book in my hand,” says Frank.

Which book is not said, but Frank wasn’t going to read it – he just clutched it like a child holds onto a comfort blanket or a student a copy of Middlemarch.

This book served to replace the security which boxing and marriage once gave him. Clutching it was like hanging onto his ex-wife Laura’s hair or the boxing ring rope.

But boxing is behind him, as is Laura, and Frank is looking to the future. “I’m going to go fishing soon,” says Frank, ”for a good woman.”

She doesn’t have to be beautiful – even something that looks like the backend of a panto horse will do, just so long as it gives him something to hold on to.’

Posted: 3rd, November 2003 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink