Fawlty MannersMon 16 Jun 2014 at 13:43
The next time I move aside in the aisle of the train for someone coming in the opposite direction and they don't have the decorum to at least acknowledge my existence on this planet in some small way, I'll shout in a John Cleese voice - "THANK YOU...THANK YOU MOST GRACIOUSLY ....THANK YOU SO MUCH".
Rude StewartMon 16 Jun 2014 at 13:15
The Fables Of LegendsMon 16 Jul 2012 at 16:52
I sat near a young man on the train the other day who couldn’t have been older than twenty. He was looking at three CD’s he’d just acquired. They were The Greatest Hits of Bon Jovi, Hotel California by The Eagles and Physical Graffiti by Led Zeppelin. I thought...so there is hope for the youth of today!
A few of the chaps and I were in a watering hole recently. A number of topics were on the table including the world class performers that have played during halftime at the Super Bowl. U2, Sting, Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, The Stones and Madonna were some of the names discussed. In television terms this really has to be the biggest gig in town and last year 111 million people were watching at any given time. During the course of the conversation a friend pointed out that when The Who played during the interval in 2010 one of the announcers referred to them as ‘that band that plays the music on CSI’. I sincerely hope that somebody enlightened that person and explained that they have more than that on their curriculum vitae.
And speaking of The Who, there was a programme on BBC 4 recently which offered a fascinating glimpse into the making of the album Quadrophenia. It really was a Pete Townsend project and the other members must have felt like session musicians. The antipathy between the group’s protagonists impelled Roger Daltrey to not allow Pete Townsend in the studio when he recorded his vocals. However, this animosity gave the band an energy, or as one person put it ‘an addiction to friction’. Pete didn’t think much of Keith Moon’s drumming. Roger on the other hand thought Keith was accomplished and at the top of his game back in the day. Somebody asked Roger ‘What was Keith Moon like in 1973?’ To which he replied…’more drunk than he was in 1972!’
A Little Piece Of HeavenFri 06 Jul 2012 at 19:33
Scientists at Europe's CERN research centre announced on Wednesday that they had found a new subatomic particle which appeared to be the Higgs boson imagined and named half a century ago by theoretical physicist Peter Higgs. Also known as the God particle, it’s so called because it’s the final link in the jigsaw that explains how fundamental particles get their mass. Without mass they would simply zip around the cosmos at the speed of light and never form into stars and planets. Scientists working at the £2.6billion Large Hadron Collider saw the first tantalising glimpses last December. Although they haven’t proven it is definitely a Higgs, there is little doubt in most experts’ minds that the sought-after particle has indeed been unearthed at last. Yet the British physicist, Professor Peter Higgs has no idea what it’s practical applications could be. But experts firmly believe it will be of paramount importance in future research which could provide new breakthroughs. The discovery of the electron in the 1800’s and our understanding of it led the invention of television. So we can well and truly thank this extremely small piece of matter with a negative electrical charge for the exposure of Mister Blobby, Big Brother and Dale Winton. Who knows where the Higgs will take us? In all probability he does!
Daredevils, Cyclists and Spiritual LeadersSun 17 Jun 2012 at 22:19
A tightrope walker from a long line of stunt performers has completed a historic crossing of Niagara Falls. Nik Wallenda from the famous Flying Wallenda family, balanced directly over the precipice on a 2-inch wire. As a large crowd watched below he walked the 1,800ft journey 150ft above the raging torrent, braving wind, water and spray. It’s the first time anyone has done this in over a century. And because he crossed the US boarder a Canadian official asked him to produce his passport at the other end. I’m surprised that the jobsworth didn’t ask him if he had anything to declare. The whole amazing feat took just over 25 minutes. Keeping it up for that long is very impressive in my book. In Nik’s honour they should now rename the area the Viagra Falls.
More than 27,000 cyclists took part in the annual London to Brighton bike ride today. In aid of The British Heart Foundation, they started at 6am at Clapham Common with the first arriving at the finishing line around 9am. The toughest part is the climb up the 813ft Ditchling Beacon just outside Brighton, which takes an average of 15 minutes to scale. Ludicrously, this is the one-day of the year that people aren’t allowed to take their bicycles on a train. This means that participants have to make other arrangements to get home. Or cycle back. Southern Railway say that their trains aren’t designed to take large numbers of bikes. Here’s the thing. Why don’t they rise to the occasion and provide empty freight carriage’s on the back of regular commuter trains for the day in order to cope. In this so-called eco friendly world I reckon this would be savvy PR.
The Dalai Lama was joined on stage last night at The Manchester Evening News Arena by Russell Brand. The comedian told the crowd that his life has certainly been an interesting journey because he’s gone from being ‘Shagger of the Year’ to introducing the spiritual leader of Tibet. The Nobel Prize winner is over here on a 10-day visit to promote peace and understanding to a younger audience. Appearing to like the comedian he said that he approved of Russell’s informal style and openness. This could be the dawn of a new age of spiritual dignitaries and comedians touring together. Envisage Frankie Boyle playing the O2 with the Archbishop of Canterbury. Or Jimmy Carr and The Pope live at the Vatican.
The Three ContrarosThu 07 Jun 2012 at 12:50
A motley ensemble of guests presented themselves on The Graham Norton Show recently. Comedienne and actress Kathy Burke is a woman you would not want to get on the wrong side of! Whenever I think of her the dishevelled and uncouth Slobs come to mind. However she recently came in from the cold and proved her versatility when she played a la-di-da former Soviet expert in Tinker, Taylor, Soldier, Spy. Broadcasting royalty and TV elder statesman Sir David Attenborough was next to adorn the couch. His brilliantly sharp expertise and avuncular stature could make me believe anything. If Sir David appeared one day and said that the sun is made out of marmalade, I’d believe him! Hollywood actress Cameron Diaz was the third interviewee. A sight I never imagined witnessing was Sir David flirting and swooning with Ms Diaz like a lovesick puppy! It resembled a mating ritual from one of his own documentaries.