Saturday, August 12, 2006



Every six weeks I do a stint at ‘Talking Newspaper’ where six of us (we are the A team) read items from our local newspaper whilst an engineer records us.  Then the tapes are delivered to local people who are visually impaired.  The powers that be don’t like us to read sensational stuff – under the erroneous impression that oldies will be shocked and we certainly don’t want to frighten them with dastardly crimes so a lot of it is run of the mill, births, deaths and council news.

In fifteen years I have disgraced myself a couple of times.  Once when I brought diet coke to whet my whistle – it exploded over the table holding our scripts and I got hiccups with giggling (now only water is allowed.)  and once when I became hysterical with laughter describing how someone was admiring a beautiful sunset through the frosted glass partition separating his dining room from his sitting room only to discover there was a small fire blazing away.  The fact that it could have had disastrous results only made my hysteria worse.

The other night I read about a Miss Onions who worked in a local super-market.  She and her boy friend were walking past the shops on their way home from the pub when they stopped to look in a shop window and admired a soft furry toy.  The toy suddenly moved and then darted out of the window display. It was a badger.  As they had both seen it they knew it wasn’t the drink so the shop owner was called along with an animal expert.  They surmised that although the back door of the shop had been open during the day – to combat the heat, there was no way the badger could have scaled the wall.  He must have wandered in through the front door – in full view of everybody – but obviously everybody had been looking elsewhere.

I had to brace myself because the story gets very sad now.  He must have been the runt of the litter as he had a wound on his back, was poorly nourished and had a heart murmur so had to be put down.

When we had finished recording one of the readers told us she was walking her dog alongside some cherry trees.  They were laden with fruit and the ground was carpeted with windfalls.  Suddenly she came across a family of badgers zonked out on the ground, They were completely oblivious to humans, dogs or the price of coal – legless on cherry brandy.
Have a nice week-end.


Life of a Banana said...

You should start a podcast since you like recording your voice. Why don't you ask son 2 about podcasting?

Daphne Wayne-Bough said...

I'm often a bit visually impaired on a Saturday or Sunday morning, it would be nice to just click on your blog and hear you reading it to me while I lie in bed nursing a hangover! I'll bet you've got a lovely voice too.

PI said...

LoaB: son no 1 is here next week - I'll ask him or the grand-children.

Daphne: that made me smile and reminded me of the badgers. I used to be able to sing like Deanna Durbin but not anymore.
'My own, let me call you my own, everything that I do, is dependant on you.'

R. Sherman said...

LOAB beat me to the "Podcast" idea. BTW, I think you should argue for sensationalism. I'd love to hear you reading scandalous news.


PI said...

Hi Randall: clearly now I HAVE to find out what the dickens a podcast is. Watch this space.

Guyana-Gyal said...

I was thinking the same as Daphne, that I'd love to just listen to you read, I bet you have a lovely voice.

Drunk badgers haha they musta looked cute.

PI said...

GG: I told MTL what you and Daphne said.
Me 'What do you think?'
MTL'Yes you have got a lovely voice.'
Me 'How lovely?
MTL 'Very lovely.'
He knows which side his bread is buttered on!

Sim said...

You do make me laugh! Drunk Badgers! Hahaha! Reminds me of a Bill Bailey joke. I do like him.

You should be able to make audio records can be recorded using a PC microphone via sound recorder (windows/all programs/accessories/entertainment), saved as a wav file, which can be uploaded to your blog and saved as you would a photo (email me if you want more details)

If this happens, may I request a bedtime story as opposed to the news? My childhood favourites dithered between Puss in Boots and the Magic Paintbrush.

kenju said...

Let's hear it for the badgers! LOL

Life of a Banana said...

Too late Pat. Geriatric1927 has beaten you to it. He's the most popular broadcaster on youtube and has a HUGE following.

Life of a Banana said...

Here's the link:

PI said...

sim: glad you liked the sloshed badgers. Your bed-tine story will have to go on hold for the moment - too much techy stuff too soon for me. I'm sure girlpants will oblige meanwhile.

Judy: I'll bet yours are bigger
than ours.

LoaB: thanks for the link. It kooks jolly interesting. He's older than me and probably wiser so I shall just have to contain my disappointment at not being bogged down by more technology. It's all so easy for you young folk!

Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

I'm joining this late but what a great idea a PI podcast is!

I was thoroughly ashamed of you when I read of your disgrace, by the way. How are your gentle listeners expected to appreciate who has been born, married or died, human OR badger, with a giggling lady chortling so? It's just ... unprofessional!

I wish I was a badger some days; especially the cherry-brandy days.

Think about the podcast though.

PI said...

Sam: I'm covered in shame or honte if you're French. I'm feeling a touch pressured but I will investigate the pod thing further. The young come next week so I'll consult them.

R. Sherman said...

Just thought of something my Dad told me.

When he was a kid, our county had a bounty on crows: a penny each.

Some boys decided to soak some feed corn in moonshine and leave it for the crows to eat. They did so and passed out.

The boys then put all of the "dead" crows in a burlap sack and took them to the sheriff for their reward, which was paid. The crows were thrown on the trash heap to be burned.

The next day, of course, the crows were gone, having sobered up and flown away, albeit with a hangover.


PI said...

Randall: do you think maybe your Dad was one of those boys?

R. Sherman said...


What do you think?


apprentice said...

Yes you can download podcasting software, I bet you'd be great.
Poor wee badger. I can just picture a bunch of legless badgers. the funniest wild life film I ever saw was of drunk elephants at an African waterholing, who had binged on fermented fruit wndfalls. Would like too try and get one of those guys to walk in a straight line.

PI said...

apprentice: I'm actually getting quite inquisitive now about these b-----n' pod casts.
It always amuses me to see any animal flat out, belly up in abandon.


Used to look after a badger set when I worked for the Forestry Commission in 76 I think. Magical creatures. Had a hide I sat in at the end of the day to watch 'em.

PI said...

4d: one of these days, when you have a nanosecond to spare, you should make a list of all the jobs you HAVEN'T done. It wouldn't be very long! :)