For me it had another significance.
Teletext was still more than a month away from launching on ITV and Channel 4, but I'd been working at the company for a couple of months by that point.
I'd been employed as a graphics artist, yet by November 24th I was somehow a video games journalist. Well, a bit of a games journalist. Or a wannabe games journalist at least. Actually, no, no, no - scrape that off: there was never any "wannabe" about it. Me becoming a games journalist happened entirely by accident.
Albeit the good sort of accident - like being run over by a funny ambulance.
In fact, my only ambitions at that stage were to one day work either as a librarian or behind the counter in a tiny video rental store. I figured those would be nice, low-stress environments, and I'd be able to talk/whisper about books or films all day, or draw and eat during the quiet periods.
Games journalists were, y'know, carefully cultivated pseudo-celebs to a certain breed of geeky young person; not something I thought I could ever aspire to be. I'd once vaguely followed CVG's be-mulleted editor Julian Rignall down Oxford Street after seeing him getting money out of an ATM, because... that's the sort of thing you do when you're a certain breed of geeky young person.
Specifically, a creepy one.
November 24th 1992 changed everything. It was the day I got to go to the Sonic 2 launch party at Hamley's toy shop in London, as a writer for something called Digitiser. This was never part of the plan at all, but - suffice to say - I'd never follow "Jaz" Rignall anywhere ever again.
As far as he knows...
I'd ended up at Teletext unexpectedly.
In the unlikely event that you're reading this not knowing what Teletext or teletext are, here's an abrupt history lesson: it was a rubbish version of the Internet that appeared on people's tellies.
Teletext Ltd., which broadcast on ITV and Channel 4, was the company - actually owned by a consortium that included the owners of Philips and The Daily Mail - but teletext (small "t") was the medium. The BBC had its own teletext service, called Ceefax.
Controversially, Teletext Ltd. had outbid the previous UK teletext franchise holder, Oracle, which had held the franchise for almost 20 years. Around the same time, GMTV took over the breakfast programming from TV-AM, and Carlton replaced Thames as London's regional broadcaster.
I was still semi-working (on the days I bothered to turn up) at Wembley Stadium when I got a call from John Holme, Teletext Ltd's first editorial director. He'd been given my name by somebody who shared a flat with somebody I'd worked with at Ladbrokes. John had been told that I was - his words not mine - a "teletext graphics wizard", and asked if I'd like to come in for an interview.
Oddly, I'd been a genuine fan of Oracle.
It had a teenage section called Buzz, which featured a sort of proto-messageboard... except you had to ring up and leave a message on their answer phone - and they'd select their favourites to broadcast. My mates and I would attempt to get the most outlandish messages possible up on screen.
I had two such messages selected. Apropos nothing, one said "Pass the peanuts, mother". The second revealed "My favourite Christmas present was my Bernard Cribbins action figure". What can I say? I was young. But they were, I suppose, a big deal in that they were the first words I ever got broadcast on teletext (with a small "t").
I'm sure that one day they'll be considered as big a deal as Neil Armstrong's "One small step for man" or Ghandi's "An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind".
I was also a big admirer of Oracle's cartoons, 4-T the Dog and Barney's Bunch. And Blue Suede Views, the music section.
And I remember waking to feed my six month-old daughter in the early hours of January 1991, switching on Oracle's news pages, and reading the headline "The liberation of Kuwait has begun". I feared the kind of world my daughter would grow up in.
Yet there was part of me - no word of a lie - who thought it would be cool to run a daily magazine section on Oracle. I still don't know how that tiny nugget of a thought resulted in exactly that landing in my lap, without me really trying. Somehow, however, it did.
At that interview, I gave the usual spiel about being a team player but also good under my own steam, and blah-blah-blah. Then I was asked for a practical demonstration of my abilities with teletext graphics. I remember deputy editor Graham Lovelace - who would become editor himself a little over six months later - remarking that "We're going to have a lot of fun". I'm sure he never meant it in a sinister way.
After playing around for a while with their editing software - different to that which I'd used at Ladbrokes, but similar enough - I was summoned back to John's office, and offered a six-month contract, and a salary of £18,000pa... a six grand pay rise on what I was earning at Wembley.
And I turned it down.
I had a family. I felt that I couldn't go from an ongoing contract to something so temporary (says the man who is now entirely freelance). I could see that John and Graham were taken aback, but they asked me to wait outside while they discussed it.
Ten minutes later I became the only employee at Teletext Ltd with an ongoing contract - something neither John nor Graham had, apparently - and they'd even upped the wages by another five hundred quid a year. I wish I were still that brave.
I came to really respect and like John. He was a nicotine-thoraxed, old-school, Fleet Street-style journo. He chain-smoked all day - he sat at the distant end of his massive office, through a mire of fag smoke and croup - and motivated the staff with regular piss-ups.
He probably need to leave to make way for someone who was younger and better placed to understand the technical revolution that was about to happen in the media world, but I was properly gutted when he left. I owe him a lot.
Those first couple of months were spent designing the look of the service, everything from the logo, to the icons that appeared on the news pages, to weather maps, to Bamber Boozler (he was based upon Bob Monkhouse).
John had asked if I knew any experienced teletext operators. I put him in touch with Julian Edwards, my old boss and mate from Ladbrokes. Julian somehow ended up in charge of the Bamboozle quiz, sitting opposite me on the other side of a waist-height partition wall.
He came to regret that.
It was an interesting time, frantic but exciting. Essentially, those first few months were a dry run for the service that was due to go live on January 1st 1993. Most of the sections would update as if they were already being broadcast. Gradually, more and more sections would be added.
Fairly early on it became apparent that however much work there was to do on the graphics, they'd severely over-estimated the amount of time it would take me. Consequently, I began playing around with an idea for a cartoon character inspired by 4T and Barney's Bunch. Ostensibly, it was to kill time, but I'd always drawn comic strips as a kid. My granddad always encouraged my drawing: "You're going to be a cartoonist one day" he told me, more times than I can count, with remarkable prescience.
My initial concept - though 'concept' sounds far more grand than what I was really doing, which was just winging it - was for an amorphous blob called Rascal.
Then I started thinking about the purple worm character who'd appeared in my Ladbrokes animations. Unexpectedly, I came up with a superlative pun of a name, a backstory inspired by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and a pair of eyes and an arch-enemy ripped-off from Sonic's Doctor Robotnik - Otto Matik.
Convinced by what was possible with the graphics, Turner became the face of Teletext's kids section, which included a jokes page hosted by Turner's best friend Glug the Slug, and - bizarrely - a viewers' art page. We didn't have a scanner, so (once we'd gone live, and started receiving submissions) I would simply copy - in teletext graphics - the drawings we were sent.
A month or so after I arrived, John put out a request for suggestions.
There were certain things that Teletext was contractually obligated to provide - as part of acquiring the license from Oracle - but they were keen to put a heavy focus on editorial. Specifically, they were looking for ideas for new magazine sections.
Already they were committed to horoscopes - for some time, until astrologer Patrick Walker took over, the stars were written by "The Cosmic Eye", who was anyone in the office who had nothing better to do. I even wrote them a couple of times.
Another section that marked Teletext out from Oracle was After Hours, an ill-advised adult magazine that included sex tips, and a lewd cartoon - Turner the Screw - inspired by my own Turner the Worm, but written by a man who claimed to be a former Viz Comic writer. This came about after Viz rejected Teletext's proposal to feature Roger Mellie and Sid the Sexist strips. I drew a couple of "pilots", but they never happened, for various reasons.
After Hours later landed Teletext in trouble when the pages failed to update in one TV region, a vibrant feature about anal sex staying up during the day.
There was also to be a music section - Planet Sound - and a teen section, Generator.
TALKING 'BOUT MY GENERATOR
Generator was to have a daily video games page written by a proper journalist called Tim Moore. I remember one of his early demo pieces began with the words "Yowzers! This game's so hot it just burned our fingers!".
Tim was about 8 years older than me, and appeared to be almost painfully trendy. He had shaggy hair, and - well - I remember Teletext's features editor once describing him as a "Style guru".
To give you a further idea of the differences between Tim and I, shortly before Teletext launched I was interviewed by Daily Mail journalist Geoffrey Levy, who asked me about designing the graphics.
"Tell me about comfort," asked Geoffrey.
"Well..." I began, defensively. "Some people might think I'm scruffy, but dressing like this is far more comfortable than wearing a suit, and so is slouching in my chair. I'm not going to do my job as well if I'm sat here feeling uncomfortable."
"I see," said Geoffrey. "I actually meant about comfort for the viewer."
Aesthetically, at least, Tim was the antithesis of me. Depending on the angle I viewed him from, he reminded me of Donny Osmond, George Harrison, Marc Bolan or Donovan.
He was - and brace yourself as both he and I laugh hysterically at this - kind of cool.
Hell, he'd even written a column for Melody Maker, as one TSP Moore ("Don't open the door - it's TSP Moore!"... Presumably, TSP are Tim's initials, rather than a contraction of "tablespoon").
I approached Mr Cool Boy suggesting that he should think about expanding the games page into an entire section. Tim kind muttered about that being a reasonable idea, and shrugged a few times, probably swigged from a bottle of Tabasco, and seemed utterly disinterested in doing anything about it.
Those might've been the first words we ever spoke to one another. I went back to him a while later, having thought about it some more, and asked if he'd mind me putting together a proposal; it was pretty apparent he wasn't going to bother. Tim might not have used the words "I don't care what you do", but that was the message I came away with.
So I put together a memo outlining what such a section might contain - backed-up with facts and figures about the rise of console gaming, that I'd taken from a newspaper. I never - not even slightly - considered that I might be the one to write on it. As far as I was concerned, I was the graphics guy. I'd not written anything since I was at school. I didn't even know if I could write.
Certainly, I wasn't going to be able to write as well as TSP Moore - a man whose writing was so powerful that it was inadvisable to open the door to him.
"Tell me more about video games" John Holme asked after receiving my proposal. So I told him. I told him how much I loved games. I told him what they meant to me, and I told him how much money they could bring in for Teletext. I was animated. I was passionate. I was 21 years old, and I had testicles the size of dugongs.
"Alright," exhaled John. "You can write it with Tim."
GAMES OF MY YEARS: 16-BIT - PART ONE by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: THE ARCADES - PART ONE by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: THE ARCADES - PART TWO by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: SEGA MASTER SYSTEM - PART ONE by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: SEGA MASTER SYSTEM - PART TWO by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: ATARI - PART ONE by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: ATARI - PART TWO by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: THE ZX SPECTRUM PART ONE by Mr Biffo
GAMES OF MY YEARS: THE ZX SPECTRUM PART TWO by Mr Biffo