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Eddie Mair | 11:40 UK time, Monday, 13 November 2006

sends this delightful card that makes one want to rush to Seoul with all speed....and including on the back a snap of a sign seen at Incheon Airport. The English translation is one of those poor efforts that was clearly never run past anyone who speaks English: "We sincerely apologise for making you inconvenient.


Valery's final card arrived second post on Friday - although it was her first replacement card.


And this is from Wolf, who took this photo and it can be seen at the National Portrait Gallery...."Shazia Mirza is funny, clever and beautiful..." which is why she is not out of place on this Blog.



  1. At 11:58 AM on 13 Nov 2006, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    looks like like technology has failed again, Eddie.

  2. At 12:02 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:


    You probably know this already but .... the pictures are appearing (on my screen at least!) as red crosses/jpg (i.e. they're not appearing at all).

    Of course, the red crosses may be Lissa's attempt to show us all that she's a qualified First Aider!? (Hi Lissa, where are the bandages?)

  3. At 12:03 PM on 13 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    As I look at these postcards - just before midday - I notice that they all reflect a common style. Interesting that such commonality should be found across postcards from such diverse sources.

    Also, I need to apologise for not wish Eddie a happy birthday yesterday. Tempted as I am to sing by "happy birthday for yesterday" song, I will just hope he accepts my belated best wishes.

    Funny how individual frogs come and go on matters of whim. I guess it's an issue of multiple entries, frog topic and happenstance. Perhaps "funny" is a little strong.

  4. At 12:13 PM on 13 Nov 2006, OnTheLedge wrote:

    Why do I get this image in my mind, just now, of technicians(?) rushing around the PM office, Eddie studiously watching his monitors, and Lissa hiding in the WATO office?

  5. At 12:15 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    Well, as ever, I'm relying on the kindness of strangers to make these work...stand by

  6. At 12:17 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    I'm not going to have a go at Eddie re the cards. It's just one of those things. I'm sure Lissa will hold his hand as he tries again :-)

    So, ValP, I think you've overtaken Appy in the number of cards posted now! I hope poor Appy doesn't take it badly, after Eddie not saying "hell" to her last week :-)

  7. At 12:17 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Well, John H (2) I think Eddie has finally achieved the apogee of his "pointless postcard " theme with today's effort. What could be better than postcards which are all the same as the ones above appear to be? Postcards which are in fact non-existent (unless I'm missing something here on the technology front, which is more then possible given my skills in that department.)
    HOWEVER,I've just spent 1/2 an hour at the bank (better not say which one) making a telegraphic transfer abroad. Or trying to. Had all the recipient details, IBAN code, Swift code etc. 3 times the lady filled out the tedious computer forms, we checked & confirmed them on paper, each time the computer refused to accept the codes she was typing. She was getting ratty, me even more so (since she was sitting down & I was standing up - the bank doesn't do chairs any more for customers.) Eventually I looked at what she had on the screen, & ventured "Why don't you try capital letters when the code uses capitals?"
    It worked! And I know nothing about banking or computers, while it's her job. Mmmmm....small moment of triumph there.

  8. At 12:17 PM on 13 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:



    (corrections for earlier)

  9. At 12:19 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    It's all a bit existential, isn't it?

    We cannot chose what we're presented with, but we can choose what we make of them.

    It is truly a project of possibilities .....

  10. At 12:23 PM on 13 Nov 2006, jonnie wrote:

    RE: OnTheLedge (4)

    Your comment really made me laugh -- I bet it's true as well.

    Rupert or todays Editor desperately trying to get Eddie into the booth to do a two way about Basra and Eddies stuck there pressing the refresh button hoping above hopes to see Treen's, Val's and Wolf's offerings appear on the monitor


  11. At 12:26 PM on 13 Nov 2006, anne wrote:

    well I have one and half cards so I suppose we can give someone C+ for that.

    Hey Lissa, get out of that cupboard and sort out the postcard posting, Eddie's forgotten how to do it again!!

    I will refrain from age related comment at this point.

  12. At 12:34 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Annasee wrote:

    Of course there was nothing wrong with the postcards as they were. Wouldn't want you to think I was Complaining! After all the play "Art" gets an hour & a half out of a blank canvas, so if you'd left them as they were Eddie, you would probably have had hundreds of blog postings anyway. You know us by now - less is more on the blog front. We don't need pictures - we're used to radio!

  13. At 12:38 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    And now Richard has fixed it. Thank goodness!

  14. At 12:39 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    I wouldn't dream of having a go at Lord Mair on that score .... He's trying hard to lighten our day, etc., etc.

    I'm quite sure I'm incapable of the degree of technological prowess he, and the others, have shown since the Blog started. Trouble is, we can all remember the steep learning curve when you try doing something "different" which involves technology (especially when you're not doing it all day, every day).

    Eddie, well done! You got there again, and don't mind our teasing!

  15. At 12:43 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Belinda wrote:

    I spy pictures! I like the flowers in the South Korea photo...of course my entire knowledge of SK comes from watching MASH episodes, so it's a surprise to me that Inchon has buildings now!

    (I'm kidding...mostly).

  16. At 12:44 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    Goodness - thank you.

  17. At 12:45 PM on 13 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    A tad off subject, but has anybody else "enjoyed" any double take moments when reading pieces about American foreign and defence policy recently, specifically when they mention the Defence Secretary nominee, Bob Gates? It's happened 2 or 3 times to me, when I read of some important policy decision and what Bill Gates has to say on the matter. I can see that that is going to take some getting used to. Anyway, Nick Robinson's blog is quite interesting.

  18. At 12:53 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Just a quick word to Wolf:

    What a talented man you are! Your portait of Shazia richly deserves its place on the walls of the NPG.

    I feel honoured to blog in such talented company ....

  19. At 01:03 PM on 13 Nov 2006, John H. wrote:

    Big Sis wrote:

    I feel honoured to blog in such talented company ....

    I just find myself muttering, "not worthy, not worthy,.." and try to find somewhere dark.

  20. At 01:13 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Sophie wrote:

    just got the email at 13.16 - slowing up again I see. its all this thinking about friggers I expect.

  21. At 01:14 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:

    Aw, John H .... Of course you're worthy, just like the rest of us! Blogs are great levellers, after all.

    When I've followed through on some of the tags, it's amazed me to find out so much more about some of our fellow froggers.

    Like you, John H, I'm a mere mortal. Don't hide in the corner. We'd miss you ...

  22. At 02:46 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Roberto Carlos Alvarez-Galloso,CPUR wrote:

    Great Blog. I'm sending a second post card with a Christmas Card from Miami Florida. If possible [for Christmas], I would like some autographs of the PM Staff. Please. Thank You.

  23. At 02:46 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Sadie wrote:

    "We sincerely apologise for making you inconvenient." - a bad translation? And yet it sums up my day exactly. Beautiful picture of Shazia Mirza!

  24. At 02:49 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Deepthought wrote:

    John H (17), Well, glad I'm not the only one to think of the wrong Gates when I hear the name. Next thread is quite serious, and while I have an opinion (however unworthy), I've got rather too much on to actually spend time crafting it so it reads as I mean. Remember the unthinking double entendres?

  25. At 03:31 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Frances O wrote:

    "Funny, clever and beautiful"

    So true, Eddie, so true...

  26. At 04:25 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Belinda wrote:

    "Funny, clever and beautiful"

    And there is tomorrow's strapline!

  27. At 04:28 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Have Bob and Bill Gates actually ever been seen together? You know what I'm saying.

    Doc (16) - ha de ha!

  28. At 04:37 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Wolf wrote:

    Thank you Big Sister and Sadie, for making such kind comments on the picture of Shazia Mirza - I had actually not expected it to land on the blog, as it's my second postcard (surely that's getting greedy), but I couldn't help myself posting it for I am awfully pleased with having blagged my way into the NPG.

    I'm looking at the above, and I think I have strung together better sentences in the past. Sorry, I must away. Hope Lynn Truss isn't looking.


  29. At 04:50 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Anne P. wrote:

    Wolf - wonderful picture.

  30. At 04:51 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Big Sister wrote:


    All praise was richly deserved. I'll try to get to your website more often.

    Can you keep us posted of anything special that's going on? You know what it's like ..... busy lives, etc. etc. (Okay, I know I've posted a lot today, but it's not always that easy!)

  31. At 04:57 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Lissa, PM Blog Bandager wrote:

    Dear all,

    I can now do CPR, put you in the recovery position and do a mean triangular bandage sling but don't ask me to fix your blog problems.

    I got back today with my non-latex gloves and face mask and have spent the afternoon html encoding the blog straplines (did you even notice we were recycling the old ones?).

    I've also updated the postcards to the flash badge so let me know if Eddie's posted yours and I've missed it.

    TX in one minute - Roger's editing and he's still not in the studio so I'd better call the ambulance.

  32. At 05:10 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Welcome back Lissa! Did we notice the recycling? We've been harping on about it all the time you were gone! Apart from on Eddie's birthday of course.

    Do you know what his "exciting news about the beach" is going to be? Is he coming out to play in just his Speedoes??

  33. At 05:20 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Fifi wrote:

    Lissa, my admiration is boundless.

    All that tecky stuff, and you can save lives too. Right up to one minute to transmission time!

    You're scaring me now.


  34. At 05:29 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Lissa, PM Blog Mistress wrote:

    Dear Aperitif, No idea what his "exciting news" is - will ask when off air.

    Speaking of "the beach"...my computer has just crashed twice trying to get onto the beach. Have too many people been gatecrashing?

  35. At 05:30 PM on 13 Nov 2006, anne wrote:

    Lissa -

    Welcome back. You are a truly multi skilled person but of course we all hope you never have to use any of your new skills in the office.

    What was that about 'did we notice the recycling of strap lines?'

    Just a bit, especially after the day Eddie asked for suggestions for new ones, got inundated and then didn't use any, not even the really good ones.

    And of course we also noticed the days when whoever it was couldn't be bothered to put a new one up at all.

  36. At 05:52 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Welcome back, Lissa! To be honest, I've not had any trouble getting back to the beach, apart from the increased load time. I'm just glad that you can perform first aid on any poorly froggers :-)

  37. At 05:58 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Aperitif wrote:

    Oh thank you Lissa - Eddie never returns my calls, but you answered my query and my day is complete... :-)

    Let us know what the news is as soon as you can, eh?

  38. At 06:17 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Deepthought wrote:

    Lissa, Do you still get to (have to?) wear a red cross badge as a fully fledged first-aider "on duty" as it were?

    And to all, I have noticed that the walk to the beach can be pretty intensive use of the computer's resources, so if your computer's a bit old (and you're on a modem) it could crash it.

    I hope the millenium party's tonight, as I cannot be there tomorrow. But I've left plans for a beach hut that can also be a tree house, and we can dismantle when we move to another part of the beach. I'll bring my late father's tools on my return, but if people want to make an early start.

  39. At 06:27 PM on 13 Nov 2006, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    What's this? Treens sending postcards? It's all a plot by the Mekon to throw us off guard!

    Quick! Send for Colonel Dan Mair!

  40. At 06:31 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Ned Pamphilon wrote:

    Dear Eddie,

    I'm a British artist in Istanbul. Sticks and stones may break my bones etc.......it's just a word. Of course, our current social mind set finds many reasons to conclude there is offence in many words. One of my latest paintings is called The Rude Word Painting, you can view it at: http://npplatestpainting.blogspot.com/2006/09/rude-word-painting.html
    It's not finished yet, but it is an interesting exercise to paint the rudest English words for a non-English speaking country. At the bottom of the painting I've written: If you can't read English, you may like the colours - it's a colourful language.

    I was a DJ at The Marquee Club in Soho about 15 or more years ago. I remember Niggers With Attitude released Straight Outta Compton. They called themselves NWA, so one solution is to call the play PPN. Back then, even among liberal music business circles, there was much debate among critics for and against such an art form and we're apparently still at it. There must be a company willing to sponsor the play's posters since it's been mentioned on PM and few plays get that kind of start.
    Great programme. Carry on BBC. The UK continues to allow public debate on sensitive issues. This is on a par with the ridiculous remarks recently made by the BNP. I don't require censorship to judge what is and is not appropriate for my own consumption. I have often painted on projects with kids and they are far more pragmatic about rude words than many adults. I'll make my own mind up thank you. I'm working as I listen via the internet and this story was so entertaining I stopped and wrote to you.

    Peace @ Home, Peace in the World!

    Best wishes, Ned

  41. At 07:08 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Annasee wrote:

    We've missed you Lissa, so welcome back. You may need to perform CPR on the computer system tonight if we get to 1000 on the Beach, so I hope you're standing by.
    Since you've now got all the protective kit (face mask, gloves, no doubt plastic apron etc) maybe you would feel brave enough for a photo while wearing it all. The mask should protect your identity against stalkers!

  42. At 07:16 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    I reckon you've got at least one word to add to the painting before it's finished...


  43. At 07:50 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Valery P wrote:

    Lissa, welcome back, and what a busy day!

    What is the Beach news then?

  44. At 08:05 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Dr Hackenbush wrote:

    Lissa (31) -

    I tried to put a patient into the recovery position earlier today, and could do with you putting me in the recovery position as a result.....


  45. At 08:16 PM on 13 Nov 2006, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Lissa, you're back.

    We love you, never go away again.

    The boss is to say the least, technologically challenged

  46. At 09:10 PM on 13 Nov 2006, steve wrote:

    Wolf: a wonderful portrait.

    Mind you it's amazing what rubbish they put in national galleries these days :o)

    Had a look at your web site the other day, powerful work. You have an insight with the camera that few can match and you deserve the recognition.

    Can't think of an intelligent and witty way to end so I'll...

  47. At 11:23 PM on 13 Nov 2006, gossipmistress wrote:

    Wonderful and powerful photo Wolf!

    Looking forward to your 3rd postcard offering!

  48. At 08:42 AM on 14 Nov 2006, Lissa Cook, PM Blog Resuscitator wrote:


    Dear Anne

    I promise I didn't ignore the strapline contributions...They have all been stored in a folder in the PM email inbox. And then I had to go off on my first aid course. The problem is I have to encode them which takes ages and then ask someone else to upload them. I may be the Blog Editor but the truth is I'm not allowed to actually tamper with the inner-workings. As my husband will tell you I've got a curious (aka destructive streak).

    They will go up (eventually)...Promise.

    And in case they don't, here are the straplines that I've encoded for this week.



    Tuesday 14th November - Friday 17th November


    "Sometimes strapless, never spineless"

    Fiona Cowan
    "Daytime TV without the pictures. Or doctors. Or Australians"
    Penny Tripp


    "A gentle eddy in current affairs"

    "Not just a news programme. A news programme lovingly hand-crafted from the finest sun-dried snippets of information, lightly drizzled with extra-virgin subtly flavoured nuance"

    Lady Penelope
  49. At 05:21 PM on 01 Mar 2007, rachel webb wrote:

    Can we just get over this dodgy petrol story? Isn't the coverage just a wee bit out of proportion to the significance of the event?

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