Thursday, 21 November 2013

Feature on Jimmy Jump for Journalism Diploma

Quiz night down the local boozer is when all sorts of weirdoes try to ‘impress’ you with their knowledge of ridiculous facts. But next time you get accosted by a man with a grey beard, supping real ale, who wants to tell you the score of every FA Cup final since 1945, look him straight in the eye and ask him this: Who has appeared at the World Cup final, the Spanish Grand Prix, the French Open and the Eurovision song contest?
Chances are they will splutter out their ‘lovely little drop’ onto their beard, scratch their bonce, and stand their speechless. Poke them in the shoulder and tell them the answer.
Jaume Marquet Cot. Better known as Jimmy Jump. Or, the mad Spanish geezer with that red hat who runs onto the pitch at sport events but forgets to streak.
If you still haven’t heard of him, type his name and the words: ‘eurovision’, ‘song’, ‘contest’ into YouTube. This is his crowning moment, the day he made this diabolical programme - that your missus makes you watch every year - viewable for once, as he joined in, unrequested, and danced along with the Spanish performance.
Jimmy is 37, from Catalonia, Spain and is a mad-keen Barcelona fan, currently living in Hamburg, Germany. His first high profile jump came in the Euro 2004 final between Greece and Portugal when he invaded the pitch, chucked a Barca flag at Figo (who played for rivals, Real Madrid) and ran straight to the back of the net.
Loaded caught up with him (through a mutual friend, acting as a translator) and asked him a few questions over Skype, as he lay in his bedroom like a naughty teenager. After a crazy few minutes of wild gesticulations, belly laughs and very fast-talking - none of which loaded contributed or understood - we were ready to go.
We began by asking Jimmy about his exploits at Eurovision and if he felt any remorse for desecrating a family show and ruining the chances of victory for his countrymen. “I don’t feel sorry for the contestant,” he says, whilst changing into an official Jimmy Jump t-shirt. “I helped to make them famous.” We couldn’t agree more. Can you remember any other entries that year?
After a spot of impromptu, improvised dance when Jimmy declares, for no apparent reason: “I do like dancing but I’m not professional, I like to dance freestyle,” he tells loaded that he never makes any money from his jumps apart from after Eurovision when he was able to get some cash for recording an advertisement that financed his trip to the World Cup in 2010.
This was another brilliant moment in the career of Jimmy Jump as despite the presence of more security men than racists at an EDL march, Jimmy managed to evade everyone and chuck his red hat on the gleaming trophy.
How does he feel after this jump and others? “It is a sexual climax,” he tells us. “After trying to jump without success, when you are able to do it, it is like a football player after a long time without scoring. When he finally succeeds, he screams out loud....GOOOOOOOALLL.” Madder than a mad dog in the sun, this guy.
But since those glory days, there haven’t been many chances for Jimmy to shoot his load. The reason is financial. He is stone cold broke. He has fines of over €100,000 to pay and despite asking for €1 from each of his 200,000 fans on Facebook, remains skint. His plans to jump at the recent Champions League final were scuppered by the airfare being too expensive (has this man not heard of Ryanair?).
“At this present moment I feel dead,” he dismays. “I’m not sure I will be able to jump again and that upsets me very much.”
Surely a little thing like money can’t prevent Jimmy from ever jumping again. Loaded wants all his fans to donate money to him NOW, in order for the following to happen:
Jimmy in the House of Commons plonking a red hat on that plonker Cameron.
Jumping on Songs of Praise before getting rugby tackled by that Welsh do-gooder Aled Jones.
Popping up at the exact moment Kate Middleton gives birth, making her think her new child is a fully-grown Spaniard.
Jimmy Jump, if you do this, we will salute you! You crazy, crazy Spanish bastard!

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