HIGH Anxiety is the title of one of Mel Brooks' greatest films.

Now it is becoming all too common in all of us - it's no laughing matter.

The dictionary definition of anxiety is "feeling or showing worry, nervousness, or unease about something with an uncertain outcome".

Now another general election ahead is making us all anxious - according to the Government's report on happiness (haven't they got better things to do?).

Anxious has got an 'X' in it and the moment I see any 'X' I get all flustered.

It means another political decision to make.

We are all suffering from voting fatigue.

So much so that the vox-popped Brenda from Bristol had Youtube hits on a par with Susan Boyle with her off-the-cuff anti-election quote: "Not another one!"

The Happiness Report said the latest period covered in their survey from May 2015 showed a "period of political uncertainty not least campaigning for the EU referendum". 

It is sending us ballot box barmy The Office for National Statistics said that there are signs of "greater anxiety in England".

Now we have 44 days before the general election.

More U-turns, more televised discussions where politicians refuse to answers questions.

The winner will govern until 2022.

So we have to get it right.

The BBC is doing its best to help. On May 4 they will screen The truth about stress

I just hope I can find my remote control.

See? I am stressed out and deeply anxious already.


DAVID Attenborough should make a programme about the that political animal called the lesser- spotted 'Metro-Mayoral Candidaticus'.

We have until May 4 to discover this rare species.

What do they look like - what do they stand for?

I had a glimpse of one them the other day a nicely-groomed, sharp-suited 'Rotheram'. 

I know what he looks like since I spotted his face on the side of a bus poster.

And then three all came at once.

But where are his fellow candidates?

Have they decided to stay in the wilderness?

I do not feel fully equipped to judge who will be best-suited to chair the super authority.

If we can't have David Attenborough, how about that other David - Dimbleby in a Question Time special with all the metro mayoral hopefuls on the panel.

Sadly, we are being treated like Merseyside mushrooms.


FAREWELL to one of the great photojournalists from Merseyside.

A man I was privileged to work with on many anti-drug and other socially relevant publications.

If he had been a politician he would have got things done. Derek Massey was one of the original members of Liverpool Free Press who campaigned for justice on every count - and published stories those with power and influence didn't want printed.

Derek didn't suffer fools gladly and he was passionate about exposing corruption and slicing through red-tape.

He was also instrumental in bringing the derelict Palm House back to life in Liverpool’s Sefton Park.

His legacy will live on for everyone who writes for a campaigning free press.

Derek's integrity and motto and inspiration shines on, especially in the pages of the Globe: "Don't let them win".


ONCE upon a time there was a poet who went on to become one of the greatest children’s authors of all time.

Brian Patten, who is aged 70, has always had a child-like gift for words.

His book The Story Giant is currently a big hit at the Everyman and has fired up so many schoolchildren to start telling tales (not snitching).

One of his earlier works was called Gargling with jelly and caring Brian told me before it was published he had to try it out for himself.

So he sat at home and literally gargled with jelly. 

"I didn't want any accidents on my hands", Brian said.

I can reveal for the sequel, Gargling with gerbils, he used his imagination.

It gives new meaning to the old adage 'don't try this at home'.


MERSEYSIDE has produced some fine actors and another joining that band of brothers and sisters is Stephen Graham.

Stephen has made his name playing hard men - but he really is Mr Nice Guy.

I have met modest Stephen many times.

He has played Al Capone twice in Wirral writer Marc Gee's Al's Lads and in the TV hit Boardwalk Empire.

He has also been Baby Face Nelson in Public Enemies.

Surely the time is right for a BAFTA nomination.

He is one of the stars in Little Boy Blue - ITV's Monday night harrowing four-part drama about the 2007 gangland murder of Rhys Jones.

Stephen plays Det Supt Dave Kelly.

It is unmissable - just like our local lad and now Hollywood star Mr Graham.


AND finally ... Billy Connolly was the first comedian I had seen at the Empire in the 1970s and he made me cry laughing.

Now life has come full circle.

I had tears of sadness watching him in the recent tribute to him about his life-changing incurable illness.

But like every subject matter he tackles BC could see the funny side - helping others in the process.

On getting Parkinson's Disease he simply stared at the camera and asked "Why couldn't Parkinson keep it to himself?"

Inspiration is there in this "never- say-die" defiant attitude from the Big Yin - a real life, anti-anxiety grin and tonic legend.

Peter Grant