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Talking of sheep

Eddie Mair | 11:47 UK time, Thursday, 12 October 2006

A few years back, before I was fired from Broadcasting House, we did an item which involved taking a sheep down the King's Road in London. There was a valid editorial reason for this, but it's not important now.

The sheep was great and her handlers, who had hundreds of sheep, were lovely. The sheep's name was April. I asked why they'd called her that, and was told it was the month she was born.

Only later did I get to wondering whether they did that with all their sheep...wouldn't they all be called March or April?

Anyway, that's not why you called. More pointless postcards follow. Just about to watch our live feed of ABC's Good Morning America, which is due to feature their exclusive interview with Mel Gibson. Should be fun. ( He really wanted to do PM but we said no, thanks.)


  1. At 12:00 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    There aren’t that many months after which you can name people, although I suppose the reverse is (or was) true. Septober, Octember, No wonder.

    (Two points to the first person to recognise the quote.)

  2. At 12:07 PM on 12 Oct 2006, OntheLedge wrote:

    April the sheep - What happy memories of your time in the BH seat! Those were the days when the prog was unmissable.

    Do you have current listener figures? Can you divulge to us, your faithful bloggers, whether, like shares, they've gone done as well as up? Speaking personally, I know I no longer see it as unmissable.

    Do other bloggers have favourite moments on BH? How I miss Donald Rumsfeld ......

    Now there's a thought. What about somebody taking him down Kings Road (followed by a flock of sheep?) Or, alternatively, perhaps he could chair PM as guest. Oh no, I see the flaw there - The ratings will plummet for that prog too!

    Off to the Cornish Riviera now. Let's pray the monsoon season is over there.

  3. At 12:10 PM on 12 Oct 2006, enoch ramsbottom wrote:

    Giving a sheep a name? That's just ridiculous.

  4. At 12:13 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Dr. H - A quote like that could only be Gee DoubleYa - But I'm too emotionally challenged today to Google on it!

  5. At 12:15 PM on 12 Oct 2006, John H. wrote:

    Don't care where the quote comes from.


  6. At 12:48 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    My word, John H, that shrug spoke volumes

  7. At 12:51 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Susan Orty-Boyden wrote:


    I think the way to give a sheep a name is if you can bleat it...

    Eddieeeeeeeeeeeee, or Maaaaiiiiirrrrrrrrrrr or Ruuuuuuupurrrrrrrrrrrt.... Peeeeeeeeeterrrrrrrrrr or what about,
    Brian Perrrrrrrrrrkinnnnnnnnnnsss or even Charlotte Greeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen....

    Tonyeeeeee Blaaaairrrrrrrr.

    Try it. You won't easily be able to stop.

    Nick Claaaaaarrrrkkkkeeeeeeee,

    or Liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiissssssssaaa.

    See what I mean!

  8. At 12:56 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Rufus T. Firefly wrote:

    Hey Doc, (1)

    My old friend Stan Laurel said it. I think?

    Or was it Oliver Norville Hardy?

  9. At 01:01 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Sounds sort of Rumsfeldian

  10. At 01:05 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    (7) Yes, you were right the first time.

  11. At 01:28 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Bea Werreidzamarcz wrote:

    Anyone remember "MAD" magazine?

    Perhaps 40 years ago, it postulated the following scenario:
    If the actor Fredric March had a son who was given the same name, the latter would be Fredric March II. If he then married the actress Tuesday Weld, would she become Tuesday March the second?

    Long time since I was able to brush the dust off that one.

  12. At 01:34 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Oh I still have fond memories of the D.R. soundbite of the week.... Maybe it could make a guest re-appearance on PM??

  13. At 01:36 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    Stan Laurel... I think!

    Feeling bit better today - carry on cheering me up with mad ramblings everyone, it's cheap therapy!!!


  14. At 01:46 PM on 12 Oct 2006, silver-fox wrote:

    Fantastic blog!

  15. At 01:57 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Hillman Hunter wrote:

    Sue (7)


  16. At 02:01 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Glad to hear you're feeling better CtheP :o) I wish I wasn't, to be honest, as I've been volunteered to go down to Perivale yet again tomorrow :((

  17. At 02:10 PM on 12 Oct 2006, John H. wrote:

    silver-fox, your comments always fill me with a mild sense of achievement. No doubt they affect other froggers the same way. Keep them coming.

  18. At 02:47 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    John H. (17) I agree. We need more posts like this to keep up our self esteem :p

  19. At 03:43 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    Thank you FFred; don't wish feeling poorly on yourself, for Pete's sake!

    Perhaps you could look for the Tardis whilst you're in Perivale and go back or fore to a preferable time?


  20. At 04:06 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    CtheP(19) Hmmm, interesting idea! I'll keep my eyes open behind the old Hoover Building :o)

  21. At 04:27 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    "...and people can experience long-term negative effects such as death..."

    Words uttered in all seriousness by an American Doctor, talking about potential effects of Ecstasy (the drug) (other drugs are available of course)...

    Is it me??

    Crikey, day-time TV takes it's toll...

  22. At 04:37 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    OK chaps, where is Perivale and, Fearless, why don't you want to go.

    FF and CtP, glad you're both feeling better :)

  23. At 04:52 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Well, yes, Pickled Chris, I guess death is fairly long term, as far as we know...

  24. At 04:57 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Hey Appy! Where have you been lurking today?

    Perivale is on the way in to London on the A40 (coming in from the Thames Valley area). I don't particularly want to have to go down for the third time in the last three weeks, as it means I'll probably get caught up with all the traffic leaving London for the weekend:(

  25. At 05:27 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Hi Fearless,

    Didn't get to log on until I got home today.

    I think I've caught up now though. I'm not going to respond to this: I don't particularly want to have to go down for the third time in the last three weeks, merely draw your attention to it and stifle a rude thought. :)

    As for traffic, I shall be using the train tomorrow, which is most civilised and green and relaxing. I dunno why I don't do it more often.

  26. At 05:55 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Oh dear! I'm so ashamed I said that! There's nothing I can say that won't make matters worse, but I'll try... What I meant was I don't want to drive to Perivale for the third time in three weeks. Other things I shall not comment on, except to say that the "fnar fnar" element may not reflect matters accurately ;o)

    But, I can now report I don't have to go now! Hooray! I will still have to go to Brussels & Eindhoven for two days next week, but at least I have the weekend to prepare for that....

  27. At 06:31 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    I take it, then, that you find Brussels and/or Eindhoven prerferable to Perivale?

    Not reflecting matters accurately? That could mean anything really! I mustn't ask - it would be so unladylike...

  28. At 06:51 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fifi wrote:

    Try this if you haven't already:

    1. Go to the Google website

    2. Type in the word FAILURE

    3. Click on 'I'm feeling lucky'

    Don't know why I remembered that just now. Maybe it's my PMstrual tension kicking in.

  29. At 07:16 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    BTW, Appy, I wish I could follow your example of using public transport to get to work, but it's not really practical. Let me explain....

    I live 8.something miles from the office. There is a bus stop about 150 metres from my house, and the bus that goes from there stops on the opposite of the road to my office. This office is on one of the largest industrial parks in the south of England. How long do you think the bus takes to go from the bus stop near my house to the office? 20 Mins? 30 min? No. It would take me an hour and twenty minutes to make this journey! That's right. To get to the office for 8:30am, I would have to catch a bus a few minutes past 7am. As for the return journey? That's even worse! Assume I leave the office at about 5:15pm. The quickest way to get home by public transport involves catching the bus to the local train sation 4 miles from the office in the wrong direction. Then, a train up to Oxford (15 miles at a right angle to the way I want to go, then a bus for 35 minutes to get me home 1:40 minutes after I left the office. If things were better, I'd consider using the bus to go to work every day. But not when I have to waste almost 3 hours travelling 16 miles...

  30. At 07:32 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Appy(27): It more the fact that I can forget about the trip to Brussels/Eindhoven until next week. Okay, the idea of having to drive up to Brum to catch that 6:50am flight on tuesday isn't appealing, and getting home about 10pm the day after is not high on my list of "fun things to do in the middle of the week", but I don't have to think about that for a few days yet...

    Hmm, I'm not sure if I should explain more about the "not reflecting matters accurately"... It would probably get modded in a flash!!

    Fifi (28) That's one that is always fun to do:)

  31. At 07:35 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    In case there is any doubt, the quote at (1) was indeed from Stan Laurel. I congratulated the answer at (7), when in fact Rufus, who got it right, later became (8). Chris was right, too (13). There, aren’t you glad that you didn’t bother reading down to find this out .... You did?!

  32. At 07:46 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Oh I know I'm really lucky to have little railway station so nearby - it's just a shame that it's no good for evenings or Sundays or - well, anytime except morning and evening rush. I do use it whenever I can, despite my flippancy above. Completely understand about the bus thing - the train /car journey for me takes just under half an hour (apart from in rush hour traffic but I avoid driving then). The bus takes an hour and a half :/

  33. At 08:04 PM on 12 Oct 2006, John H. wrote:

    Crikey, Fearless, that must mean you live in

    No, obviously, I've no idea. That is an appalling situation. I also use the car - but I live about 25 miles from the office. Fortunately, I don't have to go in everyday. I can, though, usually do it in a little bit over half an hour because it's almost all motorway. It's very good value. However, if you've read the Gap series, you'll appreciate the illusion that motorway speed and distance can induce. When there's an accident, it feels like a very, very long way.

  34. At 08:38 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    FF, re:
    Hmm, I'm not sure if I should explain more about the "not reflecting matters accurately"... It would probably get modded in a flash!!

    I think I have my answer! The inaccuracy was evidently due to under-estimation ;)

    John H, it may have taken me some time, but that "other stuff you put on your nose" when trying to get round your boss - I've just got it! The other stuff was the 'Kirtsy Young' substance wasn't it? Gosh I was being really thick - I thought you were on about cocaine?!?!?!?!

    Told you I wouldn't be thinking much this week...

  35. At 09:02 PM on 12 Oct 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Bea Werreidztc, 11, yes, oh yes, we used to get bundles of Mad sent over from rellies in the States, then joy, we were eventually able to buy it over here. The think is I remember that Tuesday Weld thing like it happened yesterday - eeek. A sure sign of ageing?
    Earlier this year I rooted out some paperback books from a charity shop, and they are within an armslength of where I sit - Burning Mad, Son of Mad and Mad Power. Golddust.

    Have a great time Ledge, if you haven't gone already...

  36. At 09:57 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Apps, all I will say is "no comment" and smiles:))

  37. At 10:21 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    It seems to me that your eight miles would take less time to travel on foot than by public transport. Do you perhaps have a cycle?

  38. At 10:57 PM on 12 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    I am reminded of a time when I was first a student and went along to a meeting of the university newspaper. The editor was suggesting themes for stories that budding journos might want to research and come back with the following week, and newcomers were volunteering enthusiatically for eveything he mooted. That is until he said "What about doing something on psychopaths? - There are no where near enough psychopaths in this city" Confused glances and silence; editor looks puzzled but presses on: "I think it would be a good idea if someone went to talk to all of the intereseted parties - users groups; the council; maybe the police..." Editor's face displays signs of 'utterly perplexed' and 'where has all the enthusiasm gone'; students sense his discomfort but don't understand it - doesn't he know he's the one who's being a bit weird? Why would one want more?... "I'd really like someone to take this one up - either from the saftey angle, or maybe the health benefits?..." (almost pleading now) "...is nobody intersted in cycling?!"

    Oh , how we laughed. (somehow it doesn't quite come across so well written down, does it?...)

  39. At 08:23 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Dr Hack, I have tried cylcing it, but after being nearly knocked off the bike twice in one journey, followed by getting "swept off" the road by a lorry passing too close, I took the decision that it my not be the safest way to travel the roads I have to use. Seeing as the roads don't have lights either (country roads..) it gets worse round this time of year...

    Appy, that's a great story:))

  40. At 09:38 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    Start a campaign for Lights In Lanes FFred! (I know - [As if I haven't enough to do already...]) Or perhaps you invest in a light aircraft? Or a microlite... you could drift calmly down into the carpark at work, relaxed and slightly wind-blown, and with a sense of Up Yours Truckers?!?

    Funny, Appy - can just imagine the scene there... I know I've had similar experiences of misheard words, can't think of them at the mo though. Brain in neutral as still stuck at home all day with Mr Kyle, Ms Winfrey, Ms Lake et al as not quite well enough to risk venturing out far yet...

  41. At 09:55 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Rufus T. Firefly wrote:

    Many thanks, Dr Hackenbush (31).

    I accept the Two points gladly.

    Hey, have you seen Mrs Claypool recently?

  42. At 10:27 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Rufus (41) She's over in the corner speaking to Mr Gotlieb...

    Wow, that's strange! The page had forgotton me (*sob*) when I first opened it. I then flicke forward and back to check if there were any recent posts, and it had remembered me! This may actually be a work-around!

  43. At 11:11 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    "The page had forgotton me (*sob*) when I first opened it. I then flicke forward and back.."
    Are you on the same page as certain congressmen?
    :-) ed

  44. At 11:13 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    That Forgotten Me, Remembered Me, Forg... thing happens to me most of the time FFred... thought it was just me, being paranoid an' all!

  45. At 11:48 AM on 13 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    CtheP, I think it happens to all of us here. BUT, what I was trying to explain is that it had forgotten me, then it remembered me without having to enter in all the details again! If you get forgotten, try clicking to the previous blog using the control just under the strapline (assuming there is one) then back to the original blog you wanted to post one. I swear it worked for me this morning...

    So, how's the day of daytime TV going? It'd drive me potty, watching daytime TV for that long...

  46. At 12:05 PM on 13 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    FFred, I've been around the bend and back again! I've stopped watching now, and have taken up less brain-busting pursuits... I found some long-forgotten crafty stuff that I can finish at last.

    Might even risk taking the pooch out...

  47. At 12:53 PM on 13 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    That happens to me as well FF, but I hadn't sussed the pattern to it until you said - cheers.

    ChrisTP, much sympathy. Optimistic thought: If you feel up to dog-walking today you may be feeling better altogether in time for the weekend :)

  48. At 02:24 PM on 13 Oct 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    I posted here before anywhere else today and it still hasn't shown up. It was well wishes to Chris mostly, so can't see how it can have caused offence.


  49. At 04:15 PM on 13 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    So, did you go out dog-walking, CtheP? And what's the crafty stuff?

  50. At 08:54 PM on 13 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    Thanks Appy & FFred...

    The dog went out, and jumped in the river, which means he's now smelling all damp-doggy; I swear he's got a half-grin on his face whilst he's crashed out on the youngest teen's bed...

    The crafty bits include some half-finished drawings, and some 12th-scale furniture I'm making for my dolls house (no sniggering allowed!). Quite therapeutic, I must get organised so I can do these things more often - it would have a positive effect on my sanity!?!

    Or is it too late??? (Tries in vain to stop nervous tic...)


  51. At 01:47 PM on 14 Oct 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Ah, the old "damp pooch" smell. I remember it well from my parents' dog :o) And I would hazard a guess at retriever, based on the half smile?

    Oh, so you're a dolls house person? My sister & niece are building one at the moment (well, for the last two years really). Every so often I'm told "buy something for the dolls'house" for birthday or Christmas presents. Then I see the price! I swear, you can buy the real-life equivalent for not much more!!

  52. At 10:14 PM on 14 Oct 2006, Chris the Pickle wrote:

    Late blogging today - been out to a nasty retail park to but new vacuum cleaner, fridge, etc.

    FFred, doggy is a Staffie cross (as opposed to a cross Staffie), and he's as mad as a box of frogs... or a blog of frogs...

    I wish I could claim to have built my own dolls house, but 'twas bought in kit form and glued together. A lot of the fun with this hobby comes from trying to make your own stuff instead of buying it, though there are certain things you can't reasonably make...

    Fimo & Sculpey (other types of polymer clay are available) are great for making food (cheaper than buying ready-made), and other items. A good printer is great, as you scan in labels off tins, etc and minimise them right down to 12th scale and stick them around sawn off lengths of tubing or dowelling to make your own "tins".

    Crikey, I seem to have gone off on a bit of an on-line tutorial!! Is it a granny and egg-sucking scenario? Sorry, if so. I'll stop now...


  53. At 11:28 PM on 14 Oct 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    CtP, all that is just right up my street, have fun! I love the world of the miniature. (Just as well since I'm only 5ft tall!)

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