Wednesday, September 06, 2006


I'm sure that all of the young, glamorous, sexually attractive, lithe, firm bodied high achievers who make up about twenty five per cent of my readership (according to Statcounter's fascinating pie chart) will be fed up of my wittering on about the good old days. The Ladybirds! Ambrose And His Orchestra! Powdered egg! Smearing your legs with gravy browning when you ran out of nylons during WW2! "Can you 'ear me mootha!" Tommy Handley! Christ, give it a rest, grandmother, we want to hear about the modern world!

Alright then. Ever upwards and onwards: don't look back. So I wish to recommend a current television programme to you.

It is called The ONE Show and is on BBC 1 at 7.00 pm, if you're lucky enough to be at home at that hour.

The thing is, I haven't actually watched it with the sound turned on, which I'm sure makes it an infinitely more interesting programme.

I seem to think it is a modern take on the Beeb's old programme Nationwide, presented by the late great Michael "Syd" Barrett of Pink Floyd and Sue Lawley (you don't know the Sue Lawley story? An obtuse reference was made to it in Chris Morris's The Day Today). In other words, it is a programme that can get the whole family, all over Britain, involved and feeling a lovely warmth in the pit of their stomach at the thought of everyone else, everywhere sitting down to watch the telly together after their tea.

In other words, the dream audience for anyone marketing a television programme. Of course, it AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN.

Normally at that time of the evening the husband is on the walking machine, exercising along to the dadrock sounds of, I dunno, Jimi Hendrix or Funkadelic (I know, ours is a very strange household. What do you expect? Have a laugh at our expense, if you must). This explains why we've got the television volume on mute, anyway.

I don't really understand The ONE Show, which is quite enjoyable in itself, but the main entertainment arises from the "chemistry" between the presenters, Adrian Chiles and Nadia Sawalha.

I have, of course, to put in a good word for Adrian "Voodoo" Chiles as, like me, he is a thick, slow witted, clodhopping Brummie (... well, I first met the mother in law eleven years ago and explained that I am not from Birmingham, but she still refers to my "Birmingham" accent and said to some Solihull residents she met on holiday "ooh, my son's wife is from Birmingham!" Hence, I have decided that I AM a Brummie). Adrian, you are absolutely lovely, babe!

As for Nadia Sawalha ... she is the key that unlocks the appeal of The ONE Show, in that you can play an amusing parlour game during the show.

Why not place bets on how soon into the show Nadia starts grinning chinlessly from ear to ear, and with how much ferocity? Keep a stopwatch at hand and join in the fun. In our house, we even provide the vocal soundtrack to her smiling:

"eee" (as the corners of her mouth turn up)

"eeeee" (as the tooth glare starts to blind you)

"EEEEEEEEEE!" (as she starts to collapse into hysterics after seeing an amusing picture of Adrian from the 1980's)

This is what we pay our licence fee for.

Yes Betty, what is she there for. Is she the equivalent of the one in Penn and Teller who doesn't speak.
And yes, despite being one of the 25% of your readers with firm buttocks, I am happy to read your historical stuff - I don't care what I read if it's well-written, and that my dear you do do well.
How do I know the Sue Lawley story I know is the same as the Sue Lawley story you know?
You carry on reminiscing. The One Show is aimed at us types with one leg stuck in the comfort blanket of the 70s. Did Mike Barrett ever do anything else? Which is wider, Nadia Sawalha's smile or her chest?
Tom - I presume that Nadia is supposed to be Adrian's television wife, to mirror the husbands and wives up and down the country who are watching the programme. No recognition for anyone who's gay, then.

Don't worry, I'll be putting up more posts for firm buttocked youngsters such as yourself. For instance: "the Cruise/Holmes baby - is it real?" and "leggings are back in fashion. Is this a good or bad thing?"

JonnyB - it's probably a story which has been told to everyone who knows someone who knows someone who once met someone at the BBC.

"Fax me 'til I fart"
Nadia Sawalha? I would.

Isn't Adrian Chiles from Dudley or somewhere? Does that make him NOT A BRUMMIE? (the whole thing confuses me)
Richard - Michael Barrett of course went on to record two solo albums, The Madcap Laughs and Barrett Homes. Then he just disappeared.

Is there a modern television programme that modern people could recommend to me so that I don't have to keep reminiscing? I really do want to be *with it*, I really do.

Billy - I've just checked. ADRIAN CHILES - BIRTHPLACE, BIRMINGHAM it said. Doesn't matter anyway. If someone is born anyhere within a hundred mile radius of Birmingham, they're a Brummie. Robbie Williams - Brummie! Charlotte Church - Brummie! Robin Hood - Brummie! Oop the Villah!
...not any recognition of anyone who doesn't have a husband.

Although Adrian Chiles?


(I don't know any Sue Lawley stories at all, I'm feeling all left out again)
Yes Billy, I would. Chest and smile, both are winners with me.

Betty, I get called a Brummie, and I grew up in Warwick! Moils away, air kid. Solihull...ah, Beatties in the January sales, like a punch-up between Julian Clary and Liberace.
I thought it was "Fact me til i fart"? As in "Although the earth may look like a sphere, it is in fact a cube, and we can see from this that Facts times Importance equals NEWS."

Wonderful, an excuse to watch my videos (oh yes) of The Day Today. As if I needed one!

'Cruise baby stole my wig says Jerry Lewis'
By the way, Adrian Chiles is a well known Baggie so would probably resent any Blues or Villa references.

I'm obviously not media enough to know any Sue Lawley stories either.
Hi Betty, insightful stuff as ever. Good to read your contribution to the inter-blog pornography symposium.

Nadia's rictus grin and Adrian's shuffling awkwardness do indeed combine to produce a form of cosy-family-TV-national-unity-just-like-the-good-old-days-porn.

"Nadia, you're lying in a news grave. Do you know what's written on your headstone?"


"Nadia, thank you."
Would that be a Bernie Winters and Shnorbitz type "Eeeeeeeeee", Betty?
Spinsterella - I'm sure Adrian Chiles is a lovelylovely person, but no, I *wouldn't*.

As for the Sue Lawley story - I've decided to opt for discretion. Put it this way, as a young woman she had a particular liking for BBC sound engineers ...

Krusty - the popular vote is in favour of Nadia. Who am I to argue?

There was a Beatties in Woverhampton which tended to be full of fraightfully posh women, if I remember correctly, and the assistants were terrifying. What happened to those sort of department stores?

Del - you are right. It is just my poor hearing.



*shakes walking stick about in threatening manner and forgets where she left her dentures*

Richard Seamon - likewise Robbie Williams, a, erm, Port Vale supporter. Surely the only west midlands team is Aston Villa, right?

Shykitten - ah, that blog pornography thing. The best contributions yet have been from BYND TH'PMLD or whatever it's called this week. Mainly because I'm too stupid to understand the other ones, gulp.

I've been watching The ONE Show with the sound turned off, which makes it seem ... DISEMBODIED, a blank canvas on to which I can place my hopes, desires, perversions of desires - I am the one who is in control.

(hmm, I don't quite carry it off, do I? It's like Stan Boardman trying to impersonate Zizek).

Istvanski - it would. With an equal amount of toothsomeness.

"young, glamorous, sexually attractive, lithe, firm bodied high achievers"

Unlikely, we are all bloggers, remember.
Betty, no need to be so formal.
Spinsterella - it's only twenty five per cent of my readership. It's interesting to think who the twenty five per cent are.

Richard - I don't know what you're referring to, but I agree anyway.
That's good.

I was referring to you using my complete given name, brought about by your heightened security measures.
still, for nadia, it's a step up from city 'let's harangue the terminally ill or those awaiting tonsillectomies' hospital

Richard - well, in times when the Utility Room security threat is at amber level, we are all required to provide our full names, addresses, bank details and shoe size when making comments. I myself now have to type my full name - Elizabeth Cynthia Clarissa Ursula Utility-Room - before a very difficult Chinese word verification.

We must NEVER let these people take away the freedoms what we have fought for.

UC - I was reading about Nadia and it seems she spends most of her life looking up homeopathic remedies for a variety of ailments she has. Did she pick them all up from the hospitals she was in?

Good to see that she can still smile through the pain though: EEEEEEEEEEEEE!
"I myself now have to type my full name - Elizabeth Cynthia Clarissa Ursula Utility-Room - before a very difficult Chinese word verification."

Not as bad as my full name: William Edward Morgan Tarquin Orton Glendowar Cinnamon Danish Williwaw IV.

You can see why I shorten it.
You should try it with the sound up. It's even better. You get that kind of neeeneeeneeeeneeeee effect. It's a bit different to the eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEE but there's only a whisker in it.

Actually I do have a fondness for Nadia after the splendid day-time treat of foreigners living abroad in Spain. It was so good, I can't even remember the name of it.

And...actually...she is a girl after my heart because she likes chips and bread. And she knows that she will have to wear a two-piece swimming costume to cover up her sins.

Chips! Yay!
Bread! Yay!
Bread and chips! Yummers! As Billy would say!
Billy - I always assumed that you were Prince William, and I was nearly right.

Molly - it's good to see that Nadia has escaped from the graveyard of daytime television - for the time being ...

If I was to indulge in chips and bread to any great extent I would need a large shed to cover up my sins, let alone a two piece swimming costume.
"It's like Stan Boardman trying to impersonate Zizek..."

Hmm. Why not...after all, Zizek tries to impersonate Freddy 'Parrot' Davies...

Maybe they should revive 'The Comedians', but w/ a cast of contempo euro-philosophers and pop-culture-pundits...
PS: I like the idea that Funkadelic is now considered Dadrock.

My mate Circle Brophy will be mortified!
I think Stan Boardman would have a field day with Zizek's speech impediment and squint.

Coming soon to Channel Four, Ken Goodwin - An Ontological Study (a three part presentation).

I chose Funkadelic at random, although they are one of the few black acts that your Bob Dylan loving Uncut reader would admit to liking (well, the sort of blokes who would describe any black music made since about 1980 as "production line R & B crap" - apart from Public Enemy I suppose).
Adrian Chiles is from Hagley. His accent bears no relation to Birmingham whatsoever. For him to claim an association with the city is fraudulent.
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