A tremendous shout-out here to David and Carole Chapple, a couple very familiar to Fringe veterans. A few years ago, David and Carole set the world record for the largest number of Fringe shows seen during one Edinburgh Fringe - it's something crazy in the multiple hundreds. Since then I think they've set similar records for the most shows seen in one day or one week and suchlike. This year they're setting themselves a brand new ridiculous challenge in celebration of the Fringe's 70 year anniversary. They're planning to go and see 70 shows in 70 venues in 7 days. To build up to it, they're spending their year carrying out numerous other challenges connected with the number 70, including reading 70 books in 2017, walking to/from work 70 times, feeding their rescue chickens (who are named after some of their favourite comics) 70 blueberries, and so on. This week, David's set himself a particularly daft goal which is to watch mine and Bob Slayer's stupid episode of ITV's Judge Rinder 70 times in one week. I believe he's onto his 40th viewing or something like that and is now having a specific kind of tinitus where he can just hear my "I love Sausages" song over and over again when he tries to sleep.
Myself and Bob will be recording a special video message for David (and Carole, though I'm told she's not joining in with this particular challenge and is finding it quite annoying as she'd like to watch some telly now) on Tuesday in honour of his marathon effort, and you can read about the Chapples' adventure here, with a specific blog post about the Norris/Slayer/Rinder challenge here. All proceeds from fundraising donations for their 70707 Challenge go to Mind, so the entire thing is not only a glorious act of passion in support of inventive, innovative comedy, it's also an amazing effort to raise money for an important charity. Most of all, I love the Chapples' commitment to coming up with original, exciting, ridiculous ways of going to watch and support comedy. As Bob has said before, there is more innovative spirit and sense of adventure in the Chapples than there is in a huge number of amazing comedians, and their efforts to raise money through their comedy marathons should be saluted and supported. Do head over to their blog and donate.