9 December – In the bottom of my heart

I sometimes wonder why some countries seem to have this love/hate relationship with our favourite TV show. Money aside, some places don’t participate every year. Instead they like to pick and choose.

Such is the case with our friends in Italy. Participants in 1956, they had wobbles in the 1980s and 1990s before having a long absence from 1998 to 2011. But in those 44 appearances to date, they’ve had some gems. I’m sure you have your favourites. Today’s birthday boy Alan Sorrenti was actually not completely Italian. His mum is British, so could easily have done his stuff for the UK of Stuff if he’d only put his mind to it. Anyway, he managed a sixth place in ‘s-Gravenhage. Italy then had two years out. But who knows, Alan could show up when the circus arrives in Turin next May.

Alan is 71 today.

Buon compleanno, Alan!