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On air

Eddie Mair | 17:08 UK time, Monday, 25 September 2006

Cherie Blair has just walked away from a radio broadcasting this edition of PM, saying "it's all rubbish".


  1. At 05:12 PM on 25 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    best tagline yet methinks.

  2. At 05:24 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Chérie Bébé wrote:

    sb1 (?)

    Despite what some say, I don't believe that she is that dull.
    Anyone who clips a kid on the ear is OK by me.

  3. At 06:08 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:


    It may be rubbish, but it's our kind of rubbish!

  4. At 06:16 PM on 25 Sep 2006, anne wrote:

    in that case it must be worth listening to.

  5. At 06:21 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Bit of a heavy programme tonight. Luckily someone slipped me this transcript from the security tapes in the office of Eddie's boss.("Boss") It's the momentous day of the birth of the blog...
    Boss: Come in, come in Eric, er, Eddie, isn't it? How's it going?
    E M :Fine thanks Boss
    B:Well, the focus group's come up with a great new idea for you. We'd like you to write a blog for P M listeners.
    E M:Don't want to
    B:Look, everyone's doing them now, the listeners love'em.
    EM: (Morosely)Haven't got any listeners
    B: Come now, you know that's not true. Me & the DG, we're your biggest fans.
    EM: (excited) The DG? He listens to me?
    B: Definitely. Without a doubt. I've just been speaking to him, he said he heard you on the Today programme this morning, & you were great.
    EM:(puzzled) But I don't do "Today"
    B: What? Eh? Oh, sorry, sorry, of course not. Anyway he was almost certain he knew your name.So how about it then? You'll do the blog?
    EM I've got nothing to write about. Nothing ever happens to me.
    B:Doesn't matter. Apparently you just put in any old rubbish - I suppose you could even list who goes past your window ha ha ha. People read it, in your case both listeners, they write comments, & before you know it you're "blogging" like mad.
    EM: Well, if they're my listeners, mad might just be the word. You should see the email I get. I won't do it, you can't make me.
    B:Listen my boy, if you don't get on to it sharpish, Fi Glover has offered to ghost write it for you. She said something about "the stationery cupboard" & wanting "to put the record straight"?
    EM: No problem Boss. How soon do you want this blog?

  6. At 06:33 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Rosalind wrote:

    For goodness sake (and what has that got to do with it?) surely she should be professional enough to keep quiet?
    Maybe she has scored an own goal?

  7. At 06:40 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Phil wrote:

    Poor woman. If she had half a brain cell she might realise the irony of her actions.

  8. At 07:13 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:


    Good work, AnnaC!

    Phil (7) - If I understand you right, you agree with me that the alleged outburst in fact translates as a slur against her own husband. Although perhaps she meant this directly.
    (Irony - this is the word for a heavy metallic object, right?)

  9. At 07:22 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:


    Oh Annasee, that is priceless! You've brought a smile to my face and almost made me splurge my wine over the laptop (That would've been hard to explain to the IT department: "Reason for failure?" "spraying half a glass of Merlot over the keyboard after reading a priceless post on the PM blog" "Eh?")

  10. At 08:23 PM on 25 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    erm - I'm gonna pass on all this Labour in-fighting nonsense (isn't that what Cherie was saying..?)

    anyway - completely off-topic but... you lot are the right people to ask:

    "displayed" versus "displaid"

    US v English??

    annnnnnnnddddd - GO!

  11. At 09:37 PM on 25 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Annasee - you had me in stitches! Just what I needed tonight. I'm straight off to check the name of the harpist I mentioned. I bet you know her. (is that a bit like telling someone in Venice that you live in Scotland, and they ask if you know their cousin who works in the restaurant there?)


  12. At 09:56 PM on 25 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Corrina Hewat - Annasee - that's the name of the harpist (oh, do you have a technical name, and am I offending you?). I saw her with a couple of other Scottish wummin musicians during the Festival, and they were excellent. Karine Polwart and Annie Grace, they had only played 2 gigs before, but had come together earlier in the year at Celtic Connections, and have spent many an impro session at the kitchen table together with a bottle of vino. Good people.

    SB well 8 maybe because my 7 hasn't come up yet. Hope I don't get a row for being too fast?

  13. At 09:59 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Val (11) not only will I probably know her, I'll be able to list all her previous husbands, jobs held & harps currently owned. The harp world is THAT small. Of course, she could no doubt do the same for me.

  14. At 10:05 PM on 25 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Whisht - 10 - DISPLAYED, absolutely. No such thing as displaid, where did that come from?

    unless you mean "this tartan" in a kind of cod accent?

  15. At 10:20 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Oh, V. That is just toomuch.. "displaid"?? It's like ""disident"; the foreigner pointing out damage to your car:p

  16. At 10:36 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Jon wrote:

    One thing that would be interesting to hear discussed on the programme would be that, when Tony Blair gives up the present job and if Gordon Brown takes over, who will GB appoint as the new Chancellor?

    He believes that he's done an excellent job for an unprecedentedly long period, and his long-term plans for the country depend on his financial forecasts and plans.

    With this in mind, would he want to appoint someone as strong as him? Presumably this person would object (after a honeymoon period) to GB trying to influence him and might try to go their own way, thereby potentially scuppering GB's long-term plans.

    On the other hand, would he appoint somebody who was weak and malleable so that GB could continue to run the economy from behind the image of a 'puppet' Chancellor?

    Or, worst of all, would GB consider that nobody else could do the job as well as him, and so, as First Lord of the Treasury, effectively abolish the position of Chancellor and resume day-to-day planning of the economy himself with a cabinet crony in a newly-created post acting as a front man to present his announcements?

    I think we should be told...

  17. At 10:49 PM on 25 Sep 2006, John W wrote:

    Is this an invitation to excorcise all American spellings and statements in this blog? Even the most anglophile Englishman will trip up these days. I do.

    As for Ms Booth, the more she opens her mouth in public, the happier I am; that a judge cannot keep opinions to themselves... Retrial, M'lady?

    I wonder what John Mortimer would make of Rumpole up against Mrs Justice Blair...

    More anti-nooh Labour than pro-cammeroon

    ized vs ised.

    My mother's "English in a Nutshell&quot (1930's) ; says the former, despite it's apparent american appearance these days.

    (Sound of Cat amoung Pigeons)


  18. At 10:53 PM on 25 Sep 2006, John W wrote:

    Jon (#16 currently)

    Good point. Funny how the medja have not asked this one...

    Who's going to be the fall guy on the cost of PFI in the future?


  19. At 11:42 PM on 25 Sep 2006, big sister wrote:

    Eddie - you realise that you've now made it to the wish list of everybody who's anybody? After all, to be rejected by Cherie Booth [aka Blair's babe] must rate as the highest accolade of all!

  20. At 11:43 PM on 25 Sep 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:


    I nominate Baravelli as the next Chancellor, and your question is, curiously, one that I pondered briefly myself today.

    In nominally related news, Harpo was entirely self-taught, and apparently his technique was unconventional to say the least.

    ‘The Least.’

  21. At 11:45 PM on 25 Sep 2006, anne wrote:

    yes Annacee, definitely a ROFL - excellent. I daresay Lissa et al are crawling round looking for the bug right this minute.

  22. At 01:12 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Gail Salafter wrote:


    By coincidence, just 24 hours ago I thought:
    there's already so much good materiel in the PM blog that an enterprising soul could easily put together a one person show that would wow the Edimbra Fringe; and then Annacee inserts the jewel in the crown.
    There's still room for more, though.
    H'mm ... even the blog title would be a draw.
    Wonder if Eric has that pencilled in for next year's hol?

  23. At 01:45 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Mr. I. Kew wrote:

    sb 23

    "My fear is fulfilled.
    No strap-line shown today, yet.
    Autmn trees are bare."

  24. At 07:30 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Just off to work. But my cleaner (did I mention she's from Brazil, by the way,) has been moonlighting at the BBC. I'm hoping she may have found something intereesting by tonight. Unless, of course, you get that £20 000 round to my house by this evening, Eddie.

  25. At 08:53 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Humph wrote:

    Re Dr H (8)

    I think that you will find that irony is what you do to the laundry before you put it away(ee). ;-)


  26. At 09:51 AM on 26 Sep 2006, David McNickle wrote:

    Actually, I think PM is a bit like the Curate's egg.

  27. At 09:58 AM on 26 Sep 2006, David McNickle wrote:

    John W (17 or something),
    My American spelling remains and I hope you harbor no grudges.

  28. At 10:47 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Simon Worrall wrote:

    Jon (16),
    Ed Balls. No seriously.
    GB will make him Chancellor, he's been the right hand man for donkeys years and had a great influence over Brown through all his time as Chancellor, firstly as a 'Special Advisor', now as an MP and Economic Secretary to the Treasury.
    No-one else would even be entertained for the job. Not that he's weak & malleable or anything like that. But he will do exactly what Brown wants, because Brown's work is also his own.

  29. At 10:50 AM on 26 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    oh dear - apologies! Didn't want an US or them thing happening.
    Actually I think US spellings tend to be 'older' anyway. It was more that I'd seen "displayed" just above this entry field and thought "that looks odd.... isn't it 'displaid'?". Then checked online dictionaries and found I was wrong, then thought that most of the online ones are US based and then simply Googled "displaid" and found loads of hits.

    Didn't give it much more thought than that before asking a group of self confessed spellers! (and I don't mena that godforsaken idiot Potter rubbish)

    One thing David's reaction reminded me of though was the prevalent chauvinism toward americans that you hear in the UK. Often goes unreported, but is the most common type of 'racism' that one hears.... certainly didn't want to add to that kinda soft thinking!

    I'll get me coat

  30. At 11:16 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Simon Worrall wrote:

    I was feeling grumpy on my post (4) a few days back on the 'Vibrant' thread at the slick stage management of conference season.

    Now, I'm no fan of Cherie-the-wide-mouthed-frog, but she's blown any effort at slickness and unity into a cocked hat at this Labour conference.

    Bless her!


  31. At 11:21 AM on 26 Sep 2006, Simon Worrall wrote:

    And surely being given the brush-off by Cherie puts Mr. Ed. in line for an immediate knighthood once GB is crowned?


  32. At 11:52 AM on 26 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    I didn't mean to jump from such a great height either, it's just that out of the many, many mis-spellings around (and some are so prevalent that one almost becomes immune) I had never seen that particular one!

    I know what you mean Whisht about the racism aspect, and I daresay cats and pigeons leap to mind, but you know the saying "One race divided by a common language"?

    Sorry David, cheap shot? I'm open to the development of language entirely, but not change out of laziness or just-for-the-sake-of-it. Heaven forfend that we should all still be trotting around communicating in grunts (wait a minute, maybe Teenagers are trying to set a precedent?)
    If a thing ain't broke, don't fix it.

    I have also speculated on GB's potential successor, and had come to the same conclusion - that he couldn't possibly trust anyone else but himself.

    Sweeties anyone?


  33. At 11:57 AM on 26 Sep 2006, big sister wrote:

    Ed - For heavens sake start a new topic, this one's getting bogged down in chocolate, duvets, booze and dyslexia

  34. At 12:12 PM on 26 Sep 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:


    Is this blog time travelling again? All today’s posts under the last two topics have now disappeared...


  35. At 01:19 PM on 26 Sep 2006, big sister wrote:

    David (26) - Did you meen that TB is like the curate's egg?

  36. At 01:37 PM on 26 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    hey - Valery,
    in no way was i referring to you (about chauvianistic feelings re americans). Honestly, I'm one of the biggest pedants I know, especially in regards to spelling and grammar, which was why i was so befuddled by my mistake.

    Then I got all wistful... I tend to do this and stray off topic, especially in conversations...

    Googling "displaid" btw is worth doing because there's a lot of it about!!

    we're all much too polite here...


  37. At 01:39 PM on 26 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Ooh V I could just do with some chocolate. I've just got back from the gym, and I didn't have time to make lunch this morning (overslept), so I'm starving! Would a Galaxy be out of the question?

  38. At 01:50 PM on 26 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Galaxy coming up - catch!

  39. At 02:50 PM on 26 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:


  40. At 03:29 PM on 26 Sep 2006, Jack Scribbs wrote:

    What does she know?

  41. At 10:56 AM on 27 Sep 2006, David McNickle wrote:

    Whist (29 or something else),
    I think American spelling is due to Webster trying to simplify things in his dictionary.

  42. At 11:39 AM on 27 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    sb 42

    David McN, I believe you are right. Not only did Webster do it to simplify things, but also to make a clean break from the archaic way that English had developed ways of spelling words. His vision (as I remember it from a newspaper article a couple of weeks ago) is that he saw this as a chance to break from "English english" and create "American english" so that the recently independent country would have an identity and language of it's own, rather than the language of it's former "masters"...

  43. At 12:46 PM on 27 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    hm, interseting David and FF...

    "English english" and "American english" make sense, but I've just realised that "Latin American Spanish" sounds confusing as hell.

    3 languages in 1?

  44. At 03:13 PM on 27 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    David & FF, once again "one race divided by a common language" - why go to the trouble of differentiating the spelling when we are using the same words, hopefully with the same intention?

  45. At 04:44 PM on 27 Sep 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Hey V:o) I'm just repeating what was in the article I read (I think it was the Indie on Sunday two w/es ago)....

  46. At 05:05 PM on 27 Sep 2006, David McNickle wrote:

    Valery (Taking a chance at 44),
    As I have lived in England for 22 years, I now use an 's' rather than a 'z' in words (realise/realize), however I still don't use 'ou' instead of just 'o' (humour/humor).

  47. At 05:33 PM on 27 Sep 2006, whisht wrote:

    Uh oh, not to stir this even more Valery and David, but a helluva lot of people now spell things with a "z" and single "o", ever since Microsoft shipped their products with an American English spell checker as default.

    I know, I know we could change the dictionary (i think) but who really does? And those little squiggly red lines are as irritating as hell...


    One race brought crashing together by a common operating system...?

  48. At 10:09 PM on 27 Sep 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Well, it takes all sorts n'est-ce pas? Maybe there's no right and wrong. I'm just talking meself out of a job...............


  49. At 03:36 PM on 05 Apr 2007, Frances O wrote:

    Which edition of PM, Eds?

    btw, it's what a government spokesman might learn to say.


    OK, then.

  50. At 03:41 PM on 05 Apr 2007, silver-fox wrote:

    Lovely weather for September.

  51. At 09:53 AM on 10 Apr 2007, Judith wrote:

    Oh dear. Has someone just restored the wrong backup?

  52. At 09:23 PM on 17 Apr 2007, Aperitif wrote:

    As I keep getting sent back here I feel compelled to leave a comment. But what? "Go on there Cherie" perhaps? As it happens, on the day in question I didn't frog because I was away. Now that I have can I stop coming back here? Cheers.

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