Sunday with Michael Parkinson: ‘If I move, it’s down to the cricket pitch’ | Sunday with…

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What time do you get up? I normally don’t on Sundays. I often lie in bed all day long. Sunday is my lazy day. If I move, it’s down to the cricket field to watch a match. I have a drop of beer or two, then put my feet up and watch television. I’m not very adventurous – I close down my brain and do nothing.

What’s for breakfast? I make rather good porridge, so I’ll have that or boiled eggs, a cup of tea.

After breakfast? I lie down! I read the papers and listen to jazz. That’s my kind of music – Louis Armstrong, the Great American Songbook.

Sundays growing up? I grew up in a mining village in a part of Yorkshire where cricket was obligatory. If you didn’t play, you were looked on suspiciously by the rest of the village. I hated school and enjoyed weekends. My mother would make a Yorkshire pudding the size of a football field, and my father and I would tuck into this Sunday feast: Yorkshire pudding with gravy, Yorkshire pudding with roast beef, Yorkshire pudding with treacle.

What’s on the box? I’ve always been a fan of soaps. I love Coronation Street and EastEnders, but I can barely look at Coronation Street now because it’s so shabby. I’m a sucker for the show [Jesse Stone] with the police chief [Tom Selleck] who has a huge moustache that looks like it’s eating him.

What makes Sunday special? I’ve always worked weekends, so I’ve never regarded them as being different. When I was in Fleet Street, weekends didn’t exist, and when I was doing a talkshow, that’s when we recorded. I’ve been a journalist since I was 16, so I’ve never had a Sunday – I had a Monday paper to do.

A Sunday tradition? The cricket club is a touchstone in my life. My father was a very good cricketer. I learned at his knee, and when I took guard at the cricket ground in Yorkshire as a child I had a perfect view of the pit where he worked. The club where I live now is everything you’d imagine an English cricket ground to be. My sons are often down there. They’re old men now, but they still turn out occasionally, and when I played, I would captain the thirds, and make sure my three boys were in my team with me. There’s nothing nicer than watching your children grow up in a sport and excel at it. Cricket’s such a funny game, I love it, and my children have loved it, and they’ve shared my interest in the cricket club.

What time do you go to bed? Oh Christ, it would depend on who with! No! Hahaha! About 10pm. I read for an hour before I go to sleep. I’m reading Siegfried Sassoon’s memoirs about his time on the front line in the First World War. It’s always fascinated me. My granddad was wounded in the Somme, and after an eggnog at Christmas he’d let me feel a lump of shell in his shoulder.

Listen to Parky – My Kind of Jazz is on Jazz FM on Sundays from 9pm

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