Today's Letter of Note concerns one of my all-time favourite comedians - the late, great Tommy Cooper, who would have been 92 this time last week.
In terms of the people who influenced my work and shaped my love of comedy, Tommy Cooper is second only to Peter Cook (with Monty Python and The Goons being a close third and fourth). As a child I was reduced to howls of laughter by his magic tricks, and even attempted to copy his routines, particularly the ones involving multiple costumes. As I grew older I grew to appreciate his skill as a wordsmith: he was a seemingly endless barrage of humour, simultaneously chaotic and note-perfect. You imagined him being that uncontrollably funny even in his private life - and if this letter to his mother is any indication, he probably was.
You can read Tommy's short but hilarious letter here. As a bonus, here's a picture of me dressed as the man himself at the Ridings Light Summer Theatre School in 2006...