Sunday, January 11, 2009

It's the naily tail!

In an essay on the Renaissance debate about witchcraft in Michael Hattaway's Companion to Renaissance Literature and Culture (2000), the historian Jim Sharpe (much esteemed in this household) describes an emerging early modern print genre which he calls "wonder literature":
... short and accessible works at once sensationalist and moralistic, sometimes clearly aimed at a wide audience, and usually concerned with describing an unusual event and employing it to demonstrate God's providence on earth. Thus cases of witchcraft were recorded and their significance pondered along with monstrous births, earthquakes, floods, whales washed up on beaches, cities destroyed by fire, and frogs rained down on the earth from the heavens.
Sound familiar?


mikeovswinton, Mr Angry said...

You really should get over the Mail. It'll raise your blood pressure and you know its wrong to have anything to do with it. My grandfather - who was a miner in 1926 - used to get the News Chronicle, a good, old fashioned liberal paper. It merged overnight with the Mail in the 50s. The morning after he was delivered a copy of the Mail, which he had not forgiven for its line in the General Strike. He went to the newsagents and told them in fairly clear terms which part of their anatomy the rag should be inserted into. If I had a pound for every time I was told this by my father I would be living in Knightsbridge, but regardless of its status as hoary old family legend - my Grandad was RIGHT. (BTW if you do buy a copy, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after you've finished with it.)

The Wife said...

I know I oughtn't waste my time on that rag -- but it's like an itch, you know: it must be scratched.

mikeovswinton said...

You know what they say in pubs round here when it looks like turning nasty; "Leave 'im. 'Ee isn't worth it." OK. Scratch the itch. But do use proper soap when you've finished. (PS Did you see the repeat of Mock the Week on Dave last night? They had to guess the story that went a headline. The headline was; "Cranky, Loopy and un-British". Andy Whatsisname came up with the suggestion - Everything if you reasd the Daily Mail. Well, it made me laugh.)

mikeovswinton said...

Andy Parsons that would be. A funny guy in my view. And not just because of his contempt for the Naily Tail. Though that does help.

The Wife said...

There ain't no telly in this here house, no technical equipment to allow us the pleasures of British TV and in fact too little time to spend on said pleasures -- were we able to enjoy them. It's very "metro, bulot, dodo" over here.

So, my daily ten minutes of the Mail is the only contact that I have with current affairs in Blighty.


The Wife said...

"Boulot", that is. "Bulot" means "whelk" in French.

Cringefully embarrassing mistake, that ....

mikeovswinton. Cld've been Pope, Ted said...

Sad as it may sound I think I'd rather have 10 mins of Dave than 10 mins with the Daily Mail. In fact I'd cut my throat if all I had to look forward to in life was the Daily Mail. I think you can watch Dave via your computer. You can certainly watch BBC and Channel 4 via their players. Or of course, you can cut to the chase and watch the best bits of Father Ted on youtube. Check out the "Shaft" bit. Or the bit with Richard Wilson. Or the bit in the lingerie section of the department store. Any Father Ted has got to better than the Mail.

J. Carter Wood said...

Thanks for the tips, Mike.

Sadly, I just happened to be trying to watch something on the Beeb and was informed:

"Rights agreements mean that BBC iPlayer television programmes are only available to users to download or stream (Click to Play) in the UK."

Auntie's not so fond of foreigners, it seems....

...or maybe not:

"However, BBC Worldwide is working on an international version, which we will make available as soon as possible."

Well, someday.

Haven't tried Channel 4 or "Dave" yet.

I must admit, I'm so out of the loop on these things that I was a bit mystified by your references to this Dave chap till I realised you were talking about a TV channel.

Still, the issue mainly boils down to one of time and a lot of 'can't really be bothered watching the computer screen after staring at the bloody thing all day'.

We do watch the odd film and have a few TV series on DVD, but, really, I've found that if you don't watch telly for a few months, you really lose the habit.