Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The Colleague I Never Knew

I missed a story in the news earlier this year about an American ex-serviceman who ran away to England, assumed the identity of a dead baby, married and had children. He lived for years as Chris Buckingham, and after divorcing his wife, began calling himself the Earl Of Buckingham. He was caught, in the end, as a result of some passport anomalies, and eventually identified as Charles Albert Stopford III. I got wind of this story last night when I went to the Christmas party of my most recent client.

You might wonder why I'm bothering to mention such old news. It came up when I bumped into a chap that I worked for over a decade ago. When I started my contract, having worked for the company before, I had a quick look to see if anyone I knew from years back was still there. And there was my former boss. Although we didn't manage to catch up during my time there, I bumped into him last night, and we had a right good natter.

Back in the day, I was one of about eight people working for him. Chris Buckingham was also one of those eight. I knew this guy really quite well. During my time there, he developed a major crush on another of our colleagues, and didn't take it very well when his affections were not returned. He starved himself, dropped a lot of weight, got very fit, and then developed a penchant for piercings. Or at least, that's what he said in our many little quiet conversations over the year or so that I knew him. I don't know what to believe now.

We even kept in touch after I had moved on to a different company. It's really quite odd to think that he was fake. His English accent was utterly convincing. I'm in awe of his ability to keep the ruse going for so long.

Apparently, they're making a film of his life story. I wonder who'll play me. Perhaps Eric Cantona. When I was in hospital having my tonsils out, a little old lady who worked there insisted I looked exactly like him.


Nick said...

Qenny is that webcam pic at the bottom you? I've never seen you before! Not bad! ;-)

Qenny said...

Why thank you. That was a couple of years ago, though. There's loads of more recent pictures accessible via the links on my sidebar, including the wedding snaps.

Jay said...

There are definitely worse people to look like than a big ol' hunky footballer :-)

Nick said...

*Just come back from perusing the photos*

Very nice! Love the wedding photos, am such a girl when it comes to that stuff. I'm off to my very first gay wedding next Saturday, my old housemate is tying the knot with his boyfriend. I just know I'm going to quietly blub all the way through it... my grumpy little bearcub's gonna be all grown up!

So tell me though - is it true what they say: the best day of your life? ;-)

Reluctant Nomad said...

Interesting story indeed! I wonder what made him decide to do the whole aristocracy bit? Got too complacent with the success of his ruse, perhaps?

I can certainly see the similarity between you and Cantona. Nice to see a pic of you too. Will have to go look at the rest that link here.

Paul said...

Great to see you!

How exciting to be involved in such a great story, I read all about it when it happened. And now I can say "Well, I know a guy who..."

fabulous haha!

Denim Boy said...

Hey there, have just stumbled across your blog. And it's great.

Surely they'd let you play yourself in the film?

Eric Cantona could never master the accent.

Tequilla Mockingbird said...


What a great blog, and what a fantastic story- I am utterly jealous that nothing as exciting is happening in my life.

I look forward to seeing you accept your Oscar for most Dramatic supportive role in this sure to be up and coming blockbuster!

TM x

Inexplicable DeVice said...

Happy Chri... Lawks! What am I saying? I mean: Bah! Humbug!

Tickersoid said...

Wow! What an amazing story.

BTW I think you're better looking than Cantona, and the picture of you doesn't do justice.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

Happy New Year, too!

Fuckkit said...

You're the spit of each other in the way that you both have a nose, two eyes and a mouth.