Who Is McCann?

...and why is he writing stuff on the internet

I would describe myself as a witty, cultured, ravishingly sexually attractive young media professional.

Others, well they would probably describe me as a camp, tasteless, pop-loving, suspected homosexual and former alcoholic with a fetish for horsey Jewish women and an octopus fixation.

I think in truth I am a unique combination of the two…

Looking cool drunk as hell with Mr Octopus at 2pm on a Friday afternoon in Soho.

Looking cool drunk as hell with Mr Octopus at 2pm on a Friday afternoon in Soho.

But what about the facts?

Well, I come from a medium-sized shithole just east of Glasgow (not from Sarajevo), of which I bizarrely still have fond memories despite it winning many accolades as the worst place in the UK.

Highlights from school include not being bullied as much as a scrawny little freak like me should have been, and coming top of my year in Higher (A-Level) Accounting and Finance – the latter achievement well-deserved as I was very good at it, but soured by the fact I was one of only two people in the class, and the other one was a fucking moron, I mean she was stupid, and not even in a funny way, in a “too stupid for school” way.

I studied for a degree in Communication & Mass Media, and won, specialising in propaganda (or maybe I just want you to think that), along with studying topics as diverse as advertising, linguistics, marketing, film and situation comedy. I wrote essays on the pop band STEPS, the series The Young Ones, and did my dissertation on the film Heat, continuing a long running expertise on auteur theory of filmmaking and the cinematic works of Ashley Judd. As you can see I focused heavily on the academic side. During this time I made my first two websites, alanmccann.co.uk for me and ilovepamela.co.uk for my girlfriend.

The alanmccann.co.uk is still going.

I also did a bit of film production, writing, producing and directing my own short film (well I say short, fucking thing was about 40 minutes), and edited and directed a one-hour documentary on cutbacks in community spending in Glasgow which was screened at the Scottish Parliament. I wrote three novels, have never tried to get them published – and therefore never failed – so I like to think of myself as a not unsuccessful fiction writer. Some friends have read them – really critical friends, you know the type who hate everything – they liked them.

I escaped to the comparatively lush paradise of Birmingham at the age of 22, and got a job in publishing as an Editor, promoted to Commissioning Editor shortly afterwards. We did books on web design, new media, animation, and later digital photography and film. I produced a book on film editing with contributions from Paul Hirsch (Oscar-winner for Star Wars) and Lee Unkrich (director of Monsters Inc, Finding Nemo and the Toy Story movies). The book is still on many reading lists for film courses.

Moving to London with my two best friends from the publishing job – who had in the intervening period both decided to be gay, and also to be gay on one another, I sought my fortune in the big city. Despite a good list of achievements in my publishing role, I couldn’t get a publishing job in the London area for love nor money, and I tried both. It seems, anything you achieve in Birmingham doesn’t really count when you get to London so I had to start again.

Putting the skills I learned while editing and writing web design books to use, I worked for Camden Council as Web Officer, fulfilling a lifelong dream to have a job with the word officer in it. Then I became a proper web designer with an outrageously corporate software company (I had to wear a suit, and sit designing and being artistic all day. Whatever.) All the while running some websites in my evenings and weekends, which eventually got me a spare time position within a music management company. As a contrast to the day job, this was great fun and I met lots of great people, and had lots of adventures, mainly involving alcohol.

It’s a well-known music industry fact that I discovered Leona Lewis…

I now still live in London, and work in Soho for Sony PlayStation, a location just right for a website about comedy anecdotes. But no, I don’t just play games all day for a living… I’ve still got to do that at home. Well unless something really awesome arrives in the office and I have to, you know, test it, you know, to check for issues, you know, all day…

Job-title wise I’ve been an officer, an executive, a designer, an architect, an editor and a producer, but what about personal life. Well, I’m learning to play the piano (via the combined methods of lessons, YouTube videos, bit of songs I like and Marx Brothers DVDs), I like chess and wish I was good at it, and have an unusual fascination with the history of the former Yugoslavia and a bulging library of about 60-70 books on the subject. Even read most of them.

I’m not as into cheesy 80s music and films as I used to be but the tendency is still there. My framed art print of Audrey Hepburn is one of my favourite possessions yet I’m still pretty sure I’m not gay. In fact I have a wonderful girlfriend, we’re just not past the introductions stage yet but I’m sure we’ll meet one day – still on the early “she doesn’t know who I am” relationship stage, I’m sure you all can empathise.

I’m not one of these weird freaky guys who has cuddly toys all over the place in his bedroom. I keep them all in my bed like a normal person.

Um, let me see, what else did I write in my online dating profile… Oh yes, I’m a millionaire, and I drive a Bentley (very badly as I never learned to drive…)

I gave up drinking September 2012 despite being consistently voted by my friends and colleagues “Least Likely Person To Ever Not Drink”. I needed something to fill my time other than making tea, so I started ploughing endless hours into writing up my many adventures, pigeon-holing my entire life into a series of ‘anecdotes’.

Essentially, if you take all the other posts on this site, and slot them into the factual CV/LinkedIn-style milestones, sprinkling in the personal things, you have my memoirs. Might do that actually. Wish I could remember more of my childhood days though, maybe I was bullied after all and just blocked it out…