I’ve met Kerry Katona, albeit briefly, and she was very sweet. It was back in 2000, I was doing a temp stewarding job at an exhibition in Olympia and was manning one of the large hall’s back doors. Some of the celebrities that were doing short visits that weekend included then England goalkeeper David James and the soon to be genuinely famous, instead of just hyper and passably good looking, Atomic Kitten. My role was to make sure nobody came in or out of that door unless authorised. A team of three of us were on rotation at the back of the hall that day so I didn’t see the Kittens coming in, but I held the door open for them as they exited into a waiting car. Katona was the last to leave and as she bounded towards the open door she winked at me and said ‘thanks darling’. In that most monotonous of jobs, moments like that were an absolute blessing and a source of embellished boasting come home time.
Jump forward a few years and Katona had departed Atomic Kitten, leaving with a legacy of four top 10 hits, including a number one with ‘Whole Again’. She had left on account of being pregnant with Brian McFadden’s child. From Dublin, McFadden had played gaelic football with my cousin and was a promising left half back before fully investing in his music career. The two had remained friends and as a result I was privy to some of the mad stories from his early Westlife days, including some of his escapades with Katona.
For example there is the story about her being shown a promotional video from the Animal Liberation Front and going to a pet store in Dublin and buying as many kittens and puppies as possible to ‘set them free’. After about an hour of this brood of cuteness pissing and shitting all over her management’s Range Rover, she smuggled them all into Dunnes Stores and dumped them there before doing a runner. The writing was on the wall back then.
I needn’t expand on what’s happened to her career since then. The highs and extreme lows have been fully expounded by the tittle tattle press. She is z-list gold and I needed to at least have a crack at luring her into some madness. I knew the cat angle was my best way in, appealing to her Atomic Kitten glory days. I sent this over (with no mention of the moment we shared in 2000):