Another story from my Saatchi days – there do seem to be quite a few. One Friday lunchtime me and Kevin Millicheap went to the University Tavern down on Store Street. A lovely little boozer where RADA students tended to hang out.
We liked it for a variety of reasons, one being that advertising people were rarely seen at the pumps spouting their self-importance.
So, there we were minding our own business when Brian Clough walks in with a little entourage of very serious looking people.
Now, I’m not a great football fan so I was only bemused by the appearance of the football legend but Kev went very quiet and sheepish.
Kev went to the phone – mobiles were larger than house-bricks in those days and only used by people in the city – and phoned Jim Salter, who ran to the pub.
Both sat dumbstruck as the great man continued his conversations. I was bored, yes it was Brian Clough, respect, but he wasn’t one of my heroes.
I asked them why don’t you ask him for his autograph. Jim said nothing but Kev said he couldn’t, he was in awe.
So picking up a pen and a piece of paper from my bag, I went up to the bar.
“I’m really sorry to interrupt you Brian, but I was wondering if I could have your autograph?”
“Of course you can young man” he said picking up the pen and paper, “who shall I make it out to?”
“Kevin, I said.” And he wrote a best wishes and good luck from Brian Clough on the paper, then handed it to me,
“There you go, Kevin and take care” Brian drawled in his own inimitable way.
“Oh, I’m not Kevin”, I replied. “Kevin’s sitting over there.”
“Well, why didn’t he come over and ask me himself?” He inquired with a puzzled frown.
“Because he’s in awe of you, Brian.” I smiled.
Brian gave a cheeky little grin and shook me by the hand and said “So he should be.” And turned back to his smiling entourage.