This land is your land...
- The most recent BBC contribution to the endless debate on what to wear on the hill was made not, as one might perhaps have expected, via The Clothes Show, but in the Sunday evening adaptation of Melvin "I'm more sexy than my brother Billy" Bragg's romantic novel A Time To Dance. And what, you may ask, did the props department come up with in the way of state-of-the-art shell clothing? Answer: Not a lot - the script seeming to demand that actors Ronald Pickup and Dervla Kirwan no sooner set foot on the fells than they tore off every last vestige of Goretexery and Rohanism to cavort naked under the wide blue Cumbrian skies. Did their mothers never tell them about catching the death of cold?
- And whilst in the realm of goggleboxery, were not The Late Show somewhat tardy in their recent discussion as to who as the greater: John Keats or Bob Dylan? A whole forty-minute programme was given over to this worthy topic, yet with not one mention of the debate having been pre-empted by TAC1's comparison of Shakespeare and Glen Coe. Our first thought was to sue for plagiarism - but then again Sarah Dunant, Tracy MacLeod and their pseudish chums were probably too busy looking at bricks in the Tate or nude Bulgarian ballet to have read the real state-of-the-art magazine.
- Back in the real world, strange tales have been emanating from Fife, where a promotional video for the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra went sadly awry. The publicity stunt required that they be filmed high on West Lomond, in February, wearing the full orchestral tackle of evening suits and skimpy dresses. Needless to say - this being only slightly more suitable hill-wear than that devised by Mr Bragg - various videological delays soon precipitated chittering amongst the clarinetists and brass monkeys in the bassoons. So much so in fact that a helicopter had to be summoned to convey an exposure-stricken virtuoso to hospital. Blue fingers and red faces all round, we hear.
- The opposite extreme in the clothing stakes was recently spotted in Mugdock Wood, a pleasant stretch of suburban greenbelt to the northwest of Glasgow. Not content with being towed around by the statutory twa dugs, one genteel Milngavie woman was observed strolling along a forest path wearing two GoreTex cagoules, one on top of the other. Neither was it even raining at the time. You know what they say about money: if you've got it, flaunt it.
- STOP PRESS!! Ever topical, TAC decided to keep an eye on the election campaign in case any quotable quotes happened to surface. Bingo! The day of the announcement itself, 11/3/92, Major on Kinnock:
"He has a mountain to climb. He doesn't have a good enough pickaxe and he doesn't have sharp enough spikes in his boots. He's not going to make it."
Oscillating as Mr Major does between the weel-kent mountainous regions of Huntingdon and Downing Street, it's perhaps permissible that he errs in not knowing the technical name for crampons. But pickaxe? PICKAXE??! Even ice pick would have been better, obliquely referring to a former leading Soviet leftwinger who met a famous grisly end when just such an implement made his ears burn. Ah - perhaps that's it. Perhaps the Grey Man of Beinn MacTory was merely trying to be a little too subtle by using his analogy to cleverly imply that socialism has become a little confused since the heady days of Trotsky. Then again, maybe he just didn't have a clue what he was talking about.
That's one whole year of TAC! - Issue 7 out mid-May
TAC 6 Index