The Strawberry Tunnel of Love
I've been ruminating some more on that Archers gay kiss in the strawberry tunnel.
OK, I should be applying my limited brain power to the situation in Iraq and our Government's attack on civil liberties. But hey (that 'hey' is for my American readers), everyone needs some light relief occasionally. Isn't that what they offer in massage parlours? Or is that 'hand relief'? That's the trouble with leading a sheltered life. You can trip over the terminology. You don't always know your arse from your argot. And no, I won't write 'ass' for my American friends. I love you dearly but the Atlantic is there for a reason you know.
Language is becoming weirder by the day. This week I heard a politician say that some people had difficulty getting on to the housing ladder because they lacked sufficient liquidity. I think he meant they didn't have enough money to buy a fucking house. Then there was the Ofsted report that said schools had experienced an increase in 'challenging behaviour' from their pupils. To me, this means a boy in double English saying "Sir, I bet you can't name all the characters in Pride and Prejudice in order of their appearance." Teachers love those kind of challenges. If Ofsted meant, as they did, that more of the little bastards are swearing and spitting at them and sometimes punching their lights out then why not say so?
Where the hell was I? Did I come in this room to look for my glasses?
Ah yes, hammy radio actors pretending to kiss in a strawberry tunnel.
It strikes me that this scenario was very clever of the Archers producers. I may be wrong, but I think that strawberry tunnels are only about 18 inches high. It follows that, in order to kiss, the two rampant Ambridge males would have to enter the tunnel from opposite ends and crawl towards each other on their stomachs. They'd crush a lot of strawberries (dreadful waste) and their red-stained shirts would make it look as though they'd done ten rounds with the Ambridge bull. But they wouldn't be able to do anything other than kiss. This would probably be enough to prevent elderly ladies in middle England swooning face-down into their Marks and Spencer Shepherds Pies.
Furthermore, for those who hadn't seen the press coverage, the ambiguity of radio sound effects could conjure up any one of the three mental images I referred to yesterday. Forget Empson's Seven Types of Ambiguity. This was three types of oral from one kind of aural. And, as people always say, the pictures are better on radio. Especially where mouths and strawberries are involved.
Talking of strawberries, Jamie's Dinners last night featured a small boy coming face to face with a strawberry for the first time and spitting it out in disgust. (With links like that I really should be on radio myself).
This hugely entertaining series has turned out to be an investigative documentary in disguise. I knew that school dinners now included junk food but I didn't know they consisted of nothing else.
The most shocking fact in last night's programme was that special constipation clinics have been set up for young children, some of whom go as long as six weeks without going to the toilet. This is because they eat nothing but refined, fibreless rubbish. Meanwhile, as research has repeatedly shown, the additives in this junk have a terrible effect on their behaviour. And we haven't even mentioned obesity yet. A recent study said that children in south London would be the first generation to die before their parents.
The Government's weak response is to shelter behind their mantra of 'choice' and put parents on bodies that make decisions about school meals, many of whom are the same parents that feed their children this crap at home.
Er, would this be the same Government that has restricted the right of parents to slap their children (rightly) and told parents not to smoke in front of children (rightly)? But it's all right to shovel noxious, un-nutritious, poisonous pap down their innocent throats and, if you don't, the state will do so when they go to school.
Joined-up Government? My arse.
And my arse is pretty much where you came in.
Well-rounded then, if a little flabby in places. But hey, you're not paying for this stuff. Frankly, you couldn't afford me anyway.