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Ten thousand and ten entries

Eddie Mair | 09:30 UK time, Tuesday, 14 November 2006

Well done! The question is. Who was the magic person? In truth, we get a running total but have no way of knowing who it was. That's best, isn't it? Sort it out between yourselves.


  1. At 09:36 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:


    We're all winners!

    Well, that's the best outcome of all, surely?

  2. At 09:40 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Stephen, Leader of STROP wrote:

    It was I.

    Or someone else.

    Anyway party on the new beach to celebrate.

    Is it too early for champagne?

  3. At 09:55 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    It's NEVER to early for bubbly, Stephen (2)

  4. At 10:01 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Of course not! And most appropriate ....

  5. At 10:03 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    Never too early for champagne, Stephen Leader, are we drinking it here, or on the beach?

    Btw, if you hadn't lost my first two posts this morning, we'd have reached 10,000 even sooner!

  6. At 10:20 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Given the bubbly was suggested on the previous thread at 9.24, I'd guess the bottles are truly empty by now.

    How will the team get the programme together today? ;)

  7. At 10:22 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Stephen, Leader of STROP wrote:

    There is a Sovereign of Champagne on the beach, but I'll provide a Jeroboam here for any that can't make it there today

  8. At 10:22 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    To early Eddie? Just cos I've had a name change, doesn't mean I won't continue to nag when it suits me.....

  9. At 10:25 AM on 14 Nov 2006, OnTheLedge wrote:


  10. At 10:30 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    The beach is best...

  11. At 10:34 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Fifi wrote:

    I say, peeps, one of my early straplines has made it at last!

    Under my posh name, too.

    * B E A M *

  12. At 10:45 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Eddie at 10:

    Were you referring to the debate about the name? If so, other froggers note. Eddie has spoken.

    The Beach is best.

  13. At 10:57 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    Big Sister (12) - to be honest I meant the location for the bubbly...

  14. At 11:03 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Fiona wrote:

    Did someone mention bubbly????.........ooh count me in!! It is indeed never too early - and besides whatever time it is here - its always later somewhere else so lets all just head east!!!
    Cheers x

  15. At 11:03 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    Hi Fifi, yes indeed, I speculated about that on one of today's others but I can't remember which. Bit of a mystery surrounding when it appeared,,...doo,doo,doo-doo

    That last in a kind of Alfred Hitchock styley, rather than a nonchalant whistly noise....

  16. At 11:06 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Lissa, PM Blog Boffin wrote:

    Hurrah - the new straplines are up and running.

    I'll do December's today to take us through to Christmas and into the New Year. That's almost as good as doing my Christmas shopping and writing my Christmas cards early.

  17. At 11:16 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Belinda wrote:

    Wait, is it nearly Christmas?


  18. At 11:19 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Right then, Eddie - and Lissa, as she's around - Off to beach with the bubbly!

  19. At 11:33 AM on 14 Nov 2006, ian wrote:

    Surely the 10,000th frogger can be identified by the counting back via the posted time from how ever many you have now. I presume Lissa doesn't have anything better to do than answer that question of world shatterng import?

  20. At 11:36 AM on 14 Nov 2006, OnTheLedge wrote:

    The wonderful world of Radio 4:

    On the radio today, in between celebrations and other more mundane activities, I've heard a v. moving report from Swaziland about aids orphans, and as I write this, there's a programme about somebody visiting the Pueblo Indian clowns ...........
    Radio 4: The World in your Ear.

  21. At 11:54 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Lissa and Belinda,

    Shame on you both! Consider the Joys of Sales Resistance and celebrate a Buy Nothing Christmas!

    Let's roast the Hog!

    November 25th is Buy Nothing Day (UK)

    Just see how difficult it is to get through a whole day without buying anything.

  22. At 11:56 AM on 14 Nov 2006, jonnie wrote:

    What a lovely atmosphere in the blog today.

    So much positivity, should we all hold hands and have a group hug - like that Canadian woman did once in Ab Fab ;-)

  23. At 12:42 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    "positivity"? Surely you mean postactivity! I agree about the group hug. Did you have a look at Reginald Hunter's videos? "If you had to..."
    xx (platonic, of course)

  24. At 12:43 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Fifi wrote:

    Jonnie (21): You know how much I love to hug. I'll vote for that.

    One -- two -- three ---

    ...sorry, am I the only one doing this??

  25. At 12:48 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    If you had to...

  26. At 01:17 PM on 14 Nov 2006, jonnie wrote:

    Re: Ed Ig (43) The Vids


    Oh dear Ed, better not plug it on here in case Roger Bolton gets to hear about it.

    We don't want Eddie's blog hauled over the coals do we ?

    Liked the zipper one, esp the comment about if it was hanging out would he be likely to go around f****ng anyone in the audience :-()()(

  27. At 01:29 PM on 14 Nov 2006, jonnie wrote:

    Actually, it probably won't be too long before the blog does get noticed and ends up on Feedback, I can just hear it now.

    Roger: And now we move on to the subject of the Internet and this week we have had a few letters from people who have stumbled across the PM Blog run by Eddie Mair who presents PM.

    Well Eddie is with us now to hopefully clarify some points. so a number of letters in the Postbag Eddie criticising an element of your blog called 'The Beach'.

    Maureen from Chelmsford writes:-

    'Is it right that Mr Mair should be encouraging a group of people who are deluded into believing they have habitated some island and cracking open bottles of champagne -- surely as these sad people are in need of psychotherapy this type of behavior shold be discouraged ?

    Eddie: ' .... ... ......... '

  28. At 01:35 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Belinda wrote:

    Ed (Currently 21): I am a hearty supporter of Buy Nothing Christmas in spirit, however my immediate family who is 16 strong (including 5 under 12s) have a somewhat slightly different view-point.
    My ideal christmas would be like that one in the Good Life (indicating when I last watched television!), where Tom and Barbara did their self-sufficient Christmas and spent about 30p. Unfortunately (or fortunately) my family is made up of Margo Ledbetters...

  29. At 01:38 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Roberto Carlos Alvarez-Galloso,CPUR wrote:

    Great Blog.

  30. At 02:28 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Peter Wharton wrote:

    TB to address a US inquiry link on Iraq by video.
    Reluctance by HMG for inquiry here-Why?
    Is this the first time that a UK PM has given evidence to a foreign country's inquiry?
    Is the next stage confirmation hearings over the pond of a UK PM after an election here?
    If we have an inquiry here, sometime in the future, will George W be giving evidence?
    I'm now going to find this Beach and look for the evacuation point!

  31. At 02:35 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Fellow froggers,

    I guess this thread (by default) must be the one for 'serious' comments, so pardon me if you can.

    One of the benefits of advancing age is that some perspective is gained. I used to consider myself extremely clever, but that estimate has steadily declined as the time has passed, and quite a lot has passed.

    What troubles me is that no matter how low my own self-estimate gets, I still seem to be far cleverer than Our Great Leaders. This frightens me, as I'm pretty thick, being a foreigner and all.

    Witness last night's from Shrub. He cannot agree to even talking with Iran unless they crawl to him and Olmert first. Instead they stand there and blame Iran as the most de-stabilising influence in the Middle East!

    And al Poodle (almost spent and hardly capable of marking a tree) talks of 'the whole Middle East', carefully naming all except the states neighbouring Iraq.

    Talking Tough from a Weak position

    O wad som powr the giftie gie us,
    To see ourselves as ithers see us!

    God (generic) help us all

  32. At 02:37 PM on 14 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    Ah, yes, Belinda (28), but I've just put that 30p through an "in today's money" calculator (courtesy of BBC Money) and it comes out as £12,372.46.

    (Sorry, that was meant to be a joke. But I realise that it could be taken as being slightly insulting...)

  33. At 02:55 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Belinda wrote:

    John H (32) - it was taken as a joke, don't worry! And yes, you're right about the time-warp currency exchange. I'm working on a time machine as we speak so I can have a good christmas at a fraction of the cost.

  34. At 03:14 PM on 14 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    I also want to introduce a mildly serious topic. And one that will be of limited interest to those who avoid the box. What does it mean to be 100% English? - this was the topic of a Channel 4 prog last night - sadly, it doesn't seem to be backed up with a website. In essence, it was a programme that contrasted the views of various people who considered themselves to be 100% English (not British) with the results of DNA tests that they agreed to participate in (as I type that, I find myself wondering about the violation that would be secret DNA testing in similar circumstances - truly terrible, yet in the context of the programme, hilarious). It was actually quite thought provoking, and entertaining, too. But, as you would imagine, the bottom line was that DNA testing reveals that even those who think they've got a feel for their family history have much a much more varied genetic heritage than they would ever expect. Without some indication of interest, I shan't bore with the details, except to say that one of the people involved was Norman Tebbit. As it happened, he was very, very English (his DNA apparently displaying fewer artefacts of regions other than "Northern Europe" than any of the others). However, I wonder if I was alone in finding his revelation that his father only ever left England to fight in WWI in Europe and his mother never even made it to Scotland only helped to establish an ideal of "Englishness" that was less attractive than he hoped (or, I suspect, believes).

  35. At 04:07 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Fiona wrote:

    Mmmm very interesting John H (34) and no you are not alone in your conclusion! wish I had seen it for myself - why are we so obsessed with being 100% anything - is it the notion that 100% English somehow = equals 100% pure, how scary!! Anyway I am Scottish but sadly have to deal with the trauma of knowing that I am actually a wee bit English as well!!

    And Belinda I am with you on your ideal Christmas - doubt my two little uns would be too impressed with the "buy nothing" notion as well

    And Jonnie (27) - who cares if we are deluded, what exactly is so wonderful about "reality" that we should stay there - I for one am all for escaping the madness once in a while (and my imaginary friend Bert completely agrees with me, don't you Bert? (he's nodding folks))

    Great blog by the way!

  36. At 04:33 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    John H, I watched the programme of which you speak and S.O.s comment to Norman Tebbit (yes we talk to the TV) was " but what a very small percentage of the British population did tend to travel outside Britain in those days"

    I've started trying to explain my theory about the make-up of native inhabitants of the British Isles, way back in the origins of dna make-up, but realise at about the fourth attempt, that a) I have limited knowledge, and b) even less time to research it, given that I'm still trying to work.
    Lend me that cushion for the fence John H, as I've said before, I'm only comfy joining in a discussion from a seat of knowledge!

    I did think the programme ended rather abru....

  37. At 04:37 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John H,

    I'm too thick to see how that might be taken as an insult, even slightly.

    Theoretically,I could have played rugby for England, but not for Scotland. I always hoped that if added up, my 'American' ancestors would have shown more Scottish than English, but that's wishful thinking driven by an immigrant's adopted preferences/prejudices. Obviously they travelled further and mixed more than Tebbit's.

    As to Englishness, You imply that Tebbit may be genetically parochial, and this observation is vary germane in today's world which so values novelty and sophistication. The more 'sophisticated' we are, and the higher our 'standard' of living, the higher our 'lifetime mileage' is to be, and the more consumptive.

    Also, the more indoor and abstract our employment, the higher status we are granted by such a culture. This even extends to those who make their living working for David Attenborough having more 'status' than gamekeepers, foresters and their like - not that they feel 'above' their subjects themselves, which I doubt.

    When we arrived here, the gamekeeper's widow (75+) next door had never been to Edinburgh and rarely went as far as Dumfries. She once told me she had thought of being cremated, but you had to go to Carlisle or Ayr, and she was "aye sick on the bus."

    The benefits of travel (for the traveller) are undoubted. That these benefits are worth the enormous true cost (almost entirely borne by less privileged others) is very much in doubt.

    Our standard measures mainly speed and distance."

    Vaya con Gaia

  38. At 04:40 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Sophie wrote:

    John H at 34 - I'm glad somebody else saw that and was struck by it. I have no idea how Andrew G-D managed to keep a straight face some of the time. I particularly liked the dead pan voice he used to say that the quite extraordinary lawyer had sued the program two days later for faulty DNA tests but my fad was undoubtedly every time one of them was faced with their mixed heritage and said something along the lines of "a racist would find that very hard to take" whilst fighting back the tears and screams of frustrated rage!

  39. At 05:28 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    Since it's gone all serious all of a sudden (but congratulations all round on some landmark number of posts) I can say this:

    I am 100% English, having lived here from the day of my birth. That's the only qualification for that 100% that I'm prepared to recognise, given that the population of this country is made up of immigrants over the past two or three thousand years...

    In my own family we know of ancestors from at least thirty countries, and that doesn't include the Cornish lass or the Guernseyman! And since one of them was a Belgian, who knows what other nationalities' soldiers went through raping and pillaging and adding their genetic heritage to the list unbeknownst to us?

    It is ludicrous for any English person to judge anyone on the basis of his or her racial or national mix of bloodstream. We're all mongrels. Praise be.

  40. At 07:05 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Rosalind wrote:

    There are massive problems of self identification for people whose families come from outside Britain in the last hundred years or so.

    My mother's family has elements which go back to the Normans. There is a little part from Scotland.

    But my father came from Vienna. and was Jewish. He came to go to university, but was stuck with the annexation of Austria.

    I grew up in London where, on the whole, everybody was different so nobody was.

    In the end we have to acknwledge that we are who we are at this moment. But it is difficult.

    What I cannot understand is why people who come here think they can change the culture. It happens through osmosis. If you try to do it by force then you will get rejection.

    My father was always deeply appreciative of the British way of life, indeed he loved it here.

  41. At 09:43 PM on 14 Nov 2006, marymary wrote:

    10,000 - an achievement to be proud of.

    100% DNA - so what?

    On the subject of "virtual" reality, did anyone hear "Start the Week"? A great contribution by a journalist who's written a book on the Wiki website. There was a strange woman warbling on about how the internet was staring at lots of pictures. She clearly was talking from a position of ignorance. We should invite her to the beach and give her a small libation.


  42. At 10:35 PM on 14 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    Chris Fish, 39, That's kinda what I was trying to say, thank you! I knew someone else on here would be able to express it better. Except of course, I'm Scottish. But the point is we are ALL (sorry again for the shouting capitals but I can't do italics) mongrels, non? and the more the merrier.

  43. At 12:05 AM on 15 Nov 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Fiona (35)- I hope you are going to bring Bert with you to the Beach. He sounds lovely. If he's a man who agrees with you without physical force being applied, that's good enough for me. Is he English or Scottish, btw? (Not that I care that much being foreign myself, & coming from a country where we were all invaders from a myriad of different lands.) I just notice quite a Scottish contingent aboard this blog, & wonder if that is because a) the Lord Mair is Himself of that land, so maybe he has a ready-made fan base from there, or b) Scots are proud to be Scottish & thus mention it more in passing than, say, English, who might be more reticent?

  44. At 02:10 AM on 15 Nov 2006, Ian Yewendo wrote:

    The place of birth cannot be chosen by the unborn, so pride in one's birth place is somewhat misplaced. No one can live more than the whole of his life in one country so pride in the country of your residence is a slightly different matter as many people have an element of choice. I find it difficult to understand the mindset of those who live in one country but hark back to "the land of their fathers". "Put your shoulder to the wheel" say I.
    I have never had any interest in my ancestors further back than I knew them. I have enough difficulty in living up to the standards of those I knew.
    And apart from that, I might discover that one of them was Welsh. No offence intended, Mrs. Trellis.

  45. At 02:13 AM on 15 Nov 2006, NOT silver-fox wrote:

    Nice strapline, Penny Tripp.

    ("Daytime TV without the pictures. Or doctors. Or Australians.")

  46. At 08:27 AM on 15 Nov 2006, Lady Penelope wrote:

    Ooo thank you, NOT. (No, that doesn't quite look right . . ..)

    Curseying's quite difficult in these knitted flipflops, I find, especially in this fine white sand. And I don't think I can have cast-off this sarong properly, as bits of it keep unravelling.

    Ooops wrong thread. Off to the new beach to gloat.


  47. At 09:11 AM on 15 Nov 2006, Simon Worrall wrote:

    English-born mongrel. 25% Irish Catholic stock and 25% Tyneside Scot. Rest assumed to be English for some generations back.

    I feel like an racial minority on this blog.

    Maybe I should sue the BBC for discrimination?? Try to make sure that the content of the blog accurately reflects the racial make-up of the British Isles, so that they meet their diversity targets for majorities, as well as minorities.

    Or maybe I should just go and kick my heels scuba-diving on the coral reef I've noticed just off the beach.

    Yeah, that's more like it. Sod the litigation, let's have a beer and a swim. Come on in, the water's lovely!


  48. At 11:59 AM on 15 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    Apologies for introducing the "100% English" discussion and then not bothering to see if anybody had anything to say. You'll prolly guess that I'm fairly inclusive and think that we would do well to celebrate our mongrel heritage. I also think that the very concept of "Englishness" (or any other "country-ness") is quite elusive - and perhaps the most worrying views of what it is are the ones that are easy to pin down. And there's clearly a difference between a "technical" definition (for residency purposes, for example, or the right to represent the country at sport) and what we're talking about. I think being born in England is a good start but can't help feeling that some of the people who choose to live here having been born in other countries should "qualify" too. And is being born in England sufficient - in one sense, yes, I'd say, but can imagine that there could exist a person who is technically English who is just waiting for the chance to go to another country - the flip side of people who choose to come to England - and perhaps they would prefer to think of themselves as something else?

    Unlike some who regularly comment here, I actually like being English and part of the various bigger unions of which we are a member. Of course, I despair sometimes and wish that some of the things that are were not. Hey ho.

  49. At 02:02 PM on 15 Nov 2006, Simon Worrall wrote:

    John H. (49);
    I have always regarded myself an English, not British (which is what my passport says), and not European. It's not prejudice, I just celebrate the difference in National and Regional characters. I like Spaniards to be Spanish, Germans to be German, and so on. I don't think that artificial constructs like the EU serve any particular purpose any more.

    The EU was a brainchild, in the post WW2 era at least, of Churchill, who urged the reconciliation of France & Germany in one of his earliest post-WW2 speeches, astonishing the audience in the process.

    The conception was that if those two nations could be bound together in a close relationship, which other nations also taking part, they would never go to war again, as they had done four times in the preceding 140 years. The basic premise, which exists to this day, was that German industry should subsidise French farming through monetary schemes.

    He also intended that Britain remain outside the Union, as an independent guarantor of its stability and to referee any disputes which might arise. Not that we should become another cog in the European wheel.

    Since we have the WTO to regulate international trade is there any other purpose remaining for the EU, except as a political construct? Britain went into the EEC (not the EU) in order to obtain an opening into international trade for its goods & services. But in succeeding decades it has gone far beyond the original idea we were all sold. I wonder if the British people would have ever voted for the current arrangement, or if they ever will.

    Incidentally, despite my love of England I would quit it in a moment and live in France, if only financial circumstances permitted. I am in common with a substantial number of Brits, according to a survey I heard recently on the BBC. Was it around 1-in-5 that wanted to emigrate permanently and ASAP?


  50. At 04:32 PM on 15 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Simon (50),

    I believe many of the poeple who say that they would emigrate suffer from The Grass is Always Greener Syndrome.

    And as someone who works, studies and spends free time on EU matters, I disagree with you about the UK's membership of the EU: We would lose influence and economic benefit on many different fronts if we withdrew from the EU, and, given the wealth of positive legislation (particularly in the social arena) I would certainly vote to be in it. The overwhleming anti-EU thrust of the news media - especially the press - in this country means that most citizens (I use that word deliberately) really don't know much about what it does or how it works. Thus I suspect that you do well to wonder - I believe that 'the British people' (whatevr that really means) would be unlikely to vote for it - out of ignorance (in the non-perjorative sense) rather than any fact-based belief that it's a bad club to be in.

    Interesting to read your views though.

  51. At 09:02 PM on 15 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Clearly my frog from hours ago needs a shove.

  52. At 11:19 PM on 15 Nov 2006, whisht wrote:

    John H, yep - I did see this show. Usually I'll avoid this stuff as its usually poorly made ("lets laugh at the ignorant people ha ha!") but I like Andrew G-D's art based TV so gave it a go.

    I think the point is made well here by Ian Yewendo - I didn't get any choice where I was born, so why be proud? Mind you, I didn't choose my parents either, yet have 'pride' in having fantastic parents. Is "pride" perhaps the wrong word as I sure as hell didn't do anything to deserve them(!)

    anyway, being 2nd gen Irish (plastic paddy anyone?) I kinda grew up thinking that 'nationalism' ain't exactly a great thing... which I know is wrong. 'Nationalism' isn't the thing that is wrong, its the "I'm better than you because of:
    a) the colour of my skin
    b) where I was born
    c) my accent
    d) the fact I can move my ears. a bit

  53. At 12:17 AM on 16 Nov 2006, RobbieDo wrote:

    Oh dear, oh dear - don't like this discussion but here goes anyway.

    I'm 0% English. I'm 100% Irish. I'm 100% Northern Ireland Irish which makes me 100% British and I'm also 100% European Union Resident.

    My passport is issued by the United Kingdom of Great Brtiain and Northern Ireland" Her Britannic Majesty's Secretary of State ..blah..blah... assistance and protection as maybe required" but is headlined as being European Union Issue.

    If I want, by tomorrow I can have an Irish Passport and still be 100% Irish, !00% British and 100% European Union Resident.

    Does it matter? The hell it does.

    What am I? I'm Irish because I am and I like being Irish, I'm British because I am and don't object to that either and I'm European because that's a fact.

    I holiday in Spain, in Italy, in France, In Scotland, England and Wales, in Italy, in Greece, in Italy, in Ireland, in Portugal, in Switzerland and in Italy (we like Italy), so I must like Europe.

    What it all means I don't know but more importantly I don't care.

    Now, I'm going to have another whiskey, not a whisky but a whiskey - because it's Irish whiskey.

    Rant finished - Goodnight

  54. At 12:20 AM on 16 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Whisht - you can move your ears? Show me! I can do the splits - is that as impressive?

  55. At 01:14 AM on 16 Nov 2006, RobbieDo wrote:


  56. At 11:51 AM on 16 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    I like whisky and whiskey, and I'm more attached to Scotland, where I've lived more than half my years, - by choice than to my land of birth.

    I'm still American and an 'incomer', but, as they say in Palnackie, "Aye, Ed, you'll die an incomer, but you're a local!".

    My loyalties start at my feet and go outward from there. I am a localist.

    I am suspicious of too much centralisation.

  57. At 12:50 PM on 17 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    Whilst I imagine this won't get a response, can you really do the splits, Drinks? Can't help thinking that that's not a bad "Friday image".

    If I tried, I suspect I probably would. I wish I could move my ears - other than by moving my head, I mean. I reckon the truth of the matter is that it really does make you better than me, whisht.

  58. At 09:18 PM on 17 Nov 2006, whisht wrote:

    John H - you and others always make me think or smile.

    or both!!!

    blimey, that's more than people I can see do!!

    However I now realise that I AM a better person than you all and will sonn take over the WORLDM for all ear moving people!!


    ha ha ha ha ha ah hgaaaaaaaagggghhh !


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