Rainy City Stories, Sofa Sorbet @http://tinyurl.com/l43wlt
What joy it is to pop on your slippers and stay in with a cup of Horlicks to watch TV. Here’s a sneak preview of the sort of thing we can look forward to:
7pm Antiques Road Show. This week the experts go overseas to the famous Vatican City in Italy. You’ve got your Canalettos, your Bacons and your famous Popes large and small. There’s more gold leaf than you can shake a stick at and Fiona gets a surprise when a stuffed Galapogos island finch once owned by Darwin leads her to doubt the existence of God…in the Vatican! Priceless!
8pm. Lark Rise to Candleford. The story of how simple white folk from humble beginnings went on to rule the world to this day. This week Mr Timmins has something to say when Dorcus is accused of running a lesbian matriarchy in the post office. Pious Thomas is emasculated when a parcel of Galapogos Island finches goes missing. But Dorcus dips into her copy of Darwin’s The Origin of Species to solve the mystery. Warning: contains strong anachronistic language.
9pm Who Do You Think You Are? There’s a surprise in store for the former Tory leader Ian Duncan Smith when he discovers his great great grandfather was quite literally a lowly blacksmith. Last week, Margaret Thatcher was surprised to find that her great great grandfather was quite literally a lowly mender of thatched roofs. It’s no surprise that the rich and famous queue to have their family trees investigated in this truly riveting programme.
10pm Victorian Farm. Ruth uses a contraption that revolutionised the way we made cake and ate it, while the boys are out in the fields raking it in with a machine that revolutionised the way we raked things in. As well as the Cake Revolution and the Raking Revolution, they also look at the Horse Revolution which revolutionised the way the Victorians put themselves about, a revolution that still affects the way we have grown to live so comfortably and smugly to this day.
11pm Darwin’s Island. Down to the last four in this captivating and sometimes grisly reality island contest that separates the men from the boys. This week the contestants are set a task to finally decide who will reign supreme over the others, and a food fight breaks out around the camp fire when the milk runs out.
You get the idea
Shaun Wright Phillips’s three match ban shows referees have changed their ruling on what constitutes violent conduct since television cameras showed Christiano Ronaldo flicking out a foot at Tottenham’s Michael Dawson in the Premier League match at White Hart Lane on Saturday 20th December 2008:
Here’s what the FA said back then:
“We contacted the referee [Mike Dean], who confirmed he didn’t see the incident at the time and, having reviewed footage, he has also confirmed he would not have sent the player off for violent conduct had he seen it. On that basis, no further action will be taken.”
Here’s what the FA said when Shaun Wright-Phillips flicked out a foot at Stoke City midfielder Rory Delap during the match at the Britannia Stadium just over a month later on Saturday 31 January 2009:
“The incident was not seen by referee Martin Atkinson. Having now watched video footage of the incident, Atkinson has informed The FA that, had he seen it at the time, he would have shown Wright-Phillips a red card for violent conduct.”
It’s great to see that the rules of the game remain flexible.
Why do sportsmen say “As I’ve said before” so many times in interviews? Is it because they’ve just given five consecutive interviews and they think it’s going out live? In fact, interviews go out on different channels in separate bulletins! They’re probably bored giving the same interview again, but it doesn’t matter if they’ve said it before. So Kevin, Freddie, Frank, Jamie, Rickie and co. please stop saying “As I’ve said before” over and over again.
I don’t think so. However, I did see the deposed Queen Vord on the truly ITV Alan (we are not worthy) Titchmarsh show talking about her new role advising Diddy David Cameron on education. Her previous advice on education had been largely ignored by Labour and now she wants to get even. That’s what politics is all about. Another vowel please, Carol.
On the theme of keeping up appearances, Paul Morley’s programme on BBC Four, All the Young Dudes: Pop and Fashion showed how pop has changed. It was a surprise to learn that Slade really did select their own clothes and made themselves up. Why should I be surprised? Because I’ve accepted that pop is heavily controlled. There would be no fun being a celeb without the attention.
The show emphasised just how much pop has lost its spontaneity. Record company marketing and media people control every aspect. KT Tunstall revealed on Radio One that she was given a list of tunes her record company deemed right and proper for her to perform including a few Jackson Five songs. No surprises there. On Jools Holland I imagine a team of flunkies behind the camera making sure the investment isn’t shot rubbing their noses or scratching their arses. Sometimes I fancy I’ve seen a performer recoil when a PR person has taken fright behind the camera over their minor unconscious facial tick.
I like to think that every time Ian Curtis’s bundle of ungainly dance movements are shown, another PR person gets fired. Pretty soon the music industry is going to be forced to cash in on the Curtis industry and create a JD copiest band built on computer screen and controlled via Wii technology from behind the camera.
It’s the worst advice ever. I just read about Google changing their big G favicon. That’s the microscopic 16×16 box that appears before the URL and next to the subscription box if you use feed reading software like Netvibes. My blog didn’t have a favicon, so I thought about setting one up. It’s all about appearance after all, a lesson I learned out hiking recently when I repeatedly bumped into the last person I’d want to bump into while out hiking, Laurence Llewellyn Bowen. He really was the complete dandy in his brown suit, high collared shirt and huge cuffs. I’d stopped for a pint in his local. I was wearing a pair of mud splattered half-mast desert combats and a brown C&A acrylic sweater. People always say, “It doesn’t matter what you wear. Everyone looks the same.” What do they know?
What You Will See
is Billy breaking out of his breeze block bunker
With a bust of Bloodaxe. You’ll see the concrete
Of his tenement crack to reveal corroded filigree -
Billy collapses in the chill air with a crick in the neck.
You’ll see dockland dredgers crossing dry land.
Yet Norse dialect survives behind sea-defences, floats
In on a gulf-stream with golf balls that were gonged
Out to sea from the eighteenth. You’ll hear garage grooves,
Chip shop gravy-trains, hinterland novels,
Horseplay with hotplates, but smart kids occupy
The Hazienda in the harbour, juxtaposed in the john
Afterwards where Billy kips crashed out.
On the links you’ll see losers drag leaden clubs
To lonely edges, loosen them onto mud below
Where mussel dredgers merge, snag gnarled
Norsemen, nail their bones to the walls of nocturnal
Noggin’-shops. Here you’ll find poets pedalling
Wordplay. Outside the quoin drops to reveal
More of that rusted filigree stuff. A silt-song lilts,
Settles out in the still-soul, the shallow-maker.
Tropical sea traffic softly bottoms bringing visitors
To a vibrant village. They hear weeping by the sea wall;
‘Why Billy? Why take your love away?’. Xenophiles
Survive. Yola survives. Youths yoked against zero survive.