The only job I could have done in the Police, should I have chosen that career path, rather than advertising, would have been creating photo-fit pictures.
I’d watched Z-Cars; Police 5 and Softly, Softly as a kid, but owning a kit with a man’s face, a magnetic pen and a pile of iron filings, gave me the feeling, this was the vocation for me.
Living equidistant between Tooting Bec Police Station and Wandsworth Prison, I feel it was fate I should own such a toy, and possibly become the next Albert Pierrepoint (he began life creating photofits, until he won some rope in a raffle).
But, watching Stratford Johns in Softly, Softly, I was always surprised, when a victim was asked about their assailant, that the iron filings toy wasn’t produced!
If the assailant looked like The Hood from Thunderbirds, they’d be easy to catch; or a pirate with an eye patch or with a moustache so outrageous, it wouldn’t have looked out of place on a WW1 German general. Although, I don’t remember anyone in the Great Train Robbery looking quite like any of those?
Sadly, I never really mastered the art of iron filing face painting. I think the magnetic pen was faulty as my faces wouldn’t have looked out of a place in a Picasso painting.
If I had got that job the Police would constantly looking for a woman with an eye where her ear should be.
Keep ‘em peeled (wherever they are on your body).