Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Round Britain Swizz

Picture deleted to free up space

Britain's varied coastline - but why weren't we allowed a proper look ?

(Click to enlarge)

Those of you who read the Times may have seen the item yesterday on the worst TV shows of all time. Readers online are being invited to nominate their own "stinkers". Here's the URL if you want to send in yours:,,564-2418742,00.html

Mine was posted this afternoon. Here's what it said.

"Without a doubt, it was "Round Britain Whizz". It was trailered for weeks in advance. An aircraft was to fly round the coast of Britain, filming it in its entirety. The footage was then to be shown somewhat speeded up - an aerial equivalent, if you like, of "London-Brighton in four minutes", the latter as seen from a train-driver's cab. But on the long-awaited day of screening, much of the footage was relegated to a tiny box in the corner of the screen while talking heads (David Bellamy among others) waffled on about Britain's geological history and other such matters that were not what we had tuned in to see. Round Britain swizz! Do it again, and properly next time."

It's funny how some things stick in the memory. That huge letdown of a programme was made 20 years ago, but the memory of it still irks. As indicated, the repeated pre-screen billing built up expectations that were not delivered. They even ran a lengthy feature in one of the TV mags (Radio or TV Times, can't recall which) where they interviewed the RAF pilot, who went into a lot of fascinating technical detail. Like having cameras that pointed backwards from the rear of the aircraft. That way the lenses stayed cleaner. Obviously the film then had to be run in reverse.

Of course, these days we have Google Earth if we want to zoom across the countryside at tree top level, or re-visit our favourite holiday destinations .

I might come back and add a few links later. Why hold up a post for want of a few details ? But then there's always the temptation to do a bit of embellishment here and there, while one's about it . Anyone have any views on the blogging ethics of posting something that is not quite the finished article ? Speaking for myself/ourselves, I sometimes spot things easier when I see it later in its proper context.

As you may have noticed, my ever-present companion hippo is not slow with his comments either, few of which are what one would call constructive. I'll be putting something up tomorrow about hippo, and how he came by that name...... Clue: he's a member of the daemon species Hippo acronymus.

I expect you recognize the bit of coastline in my aerial picture (I've mentioned previously my passion for taking pix when I'm airborne). Clue: it's somewhere Ringo and his lady could take a cottage - if it's not too dear !

Do you always bag the window seat ? What about J, that missus of yours? Does she ever get a look-in ? Or look-out ?

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