Sunday, March 08, 2009

Once Upon A Time In The West

My stats tell me I had 174 unique visitors yesterday, a massive increase on my usual small readership. Which only goes to prove THE POWER OF TWITTER and the insignificance of day to day blogging.

Still, let's get back to normal.

We're not having a holiday this year, this year being 2009 Worry About The Future Year, so we have to take vicarious pleasures. The 2-part series Touring Britain with David Heathcote (repeated at 11.30 on BBC4 tomorrow night) was a pleasure. In the first part he used an 1887 Baedeker Guide to tour the north west of England and in the second he used a couple of 1930s Shell Guides to tour Dorset and Cornwall.

What about that erection, eh?

I was already enjoying David's company but when he got to Padstow I began to like him even more. It took him an age to find somewhere to park and walking round Padstow's crowded streets he could take it no longer.

"Padstow: it's rammed with people of the most obnoxious kind. And it sucks."

The guide David was using was written by John Betjeman.

"The thing about the Betjeman entries, it's all about the buildings, it's not about the people at all. Sometimes it's the people that are the problem. I feel like the worst kind of inverted snob, but right now, I couldn't give a stuff about Padstow."

The guide Betjeman wrote in the 30s described the "unspoilt Cornish experience". A time when a village like Polperro was actually lived in all year round by real families. A time before landowners sold people's homes to the new landlords of holiday homes and the rich second homers. A time before the village died.


  1. It was vicarious pleasure watching David Heathcote (or Scruffcoate as I called him) enjoying a holiday on the Licence Fee. I particularly enjoyed the full fry-up he had and am looking forward to his wetsuit episode.

  2. What did you think of the bacon, Rog? I thought it was done to perfection. David isn't as scruffy as Michael Smith, though. But he did enjoy himself more. This year I will be getting vicarious pleasure from Billy Connolly, Stephen Fry, Lenny Henry, Carol Thatcher and Jeremies Hardy, Clarkson, Vine, Thorpe, Paxman and Edwards.

  3. My readership figures were doubled by mentioning Russell Brand, tripled by mentioning Doctor Who and increased by a factor 5 when I mentioned perishing Gail Trimble.

  4. If you aren’t going away for a holiday you should plan to do something nice.
    Otherwise you’ll just sit around Twittering.

  5. I'm still hoping to find Tim sticking pineapples up his arse

  6. Have you washed the stench of the baked beans off yet?

  7. Billy - And they say society's dumbing down!

    Kaz - We'll be taking day trips, letting the train take the strain.

    Kaz - It'll be next Friday. There's a lot of preparation involved, you know.

    MJ - Yes, and I had my first taste of them this morning. One was being strangled by a stray pube.

  8. Vicarious pleasures involving full English and the Cerne Abbas giant? More than enough to occupy a whole morning's staring out of the window/

  9. If I saw the giant outside my window it would put me right off my breakfast.

  10. I've always thought that man's torso looks like an earless cat playing some form of wind instrument. Is it just me?

  11. An octopus with a six-pack?