Tuesday, 16 October 2007

The final straw...

Back around 1974, we went to live in a rented farm cottage near Rye in Sussex. Elder Daught had just been born, and money was tight – so no change there!

I did a few hours work in our local pub to keep the cash coming in, and Mrs S was admirable at bringing said Elder Daught into this world as all good Mums do. Younger Daught was maybe on the horizon, but as anyone knows; it's the planning that counts...many, many times...;0)

We didn't have a television, and one day the landlord of the pub I worked in gave us one of his! Just like that! (Alec, you were a Saint). So I took the thing back to the cottage, and then realised that TVs need aerials. One trip to Rye meant we had several yards of the dreaded coaxial stuff, and off we went.

Or did we? The blasted thing only worked when the aerial cable (no roof aerial here, bugger me, do you expect me to crawl all over the tiles...I didn't have a ladder...), was hung from hooks in the lounge ceiling. Festooned you might say...

So we watched all the progs sitting either side by side, or, more comfortably, behind each other on the settee. Sounds great, (Watch it...) but a necessity because we had to plant the TV in a cupboard by the fire as there wasn't any room anywhere else in the little front room.

One TV series stood out beyond everything else – The Hanged Man! It was a riveting story; we actually relived each of the the episodes. We would plan the meals, Daught's bath, everything; just to see each episode! The series is well documented elsewhere, but Michael Williams was superb, and we loved the star; Colin Blakely.

Until the final episode...

Daught's in bed fast asleep; home-made wine in the jar; Mr and Mrs S one behind the other on the settee, TV on, sitting in the cupboard. Cables stuck all over the ceiling. Fantastic final episode, so much excitement that the home-made (gallon) seemed sunk to the dregs.

And so did the blasted aerial...right at the last minute, just before the ending, there was a sigh, and the whole bloody lot of the cables, strings, TV etc, crashed to the floor and we missed the whole bloody finale!

So if anyone is old enough to know what happened when the helicopter crashed, please let us know, as we are still in shock...

10 comments:

Lucien Modo said...

Ring of Return... Lew Burnett discovers that he has been hypnotized, and that his entire past is fake. He in fact is was a vet in pre-war North Yorkshire who experienced all kinds of scrapes, misadventures and funny situations.
His able young assistant (played admirably by John Alderton) tries to get rid of him by leaving him to scramble across moors for survival.

Lucien Modo said...

... or maybe I'm mistaken?

fuchsia groan said...

Oh bugger Scroblene. And it still hurts after all these years. I hadn't heard of this series, so I did some googling (isn't the internet great?). Lots of info here
http://www.lonely.geek.nz/turtlesphm.html

but it doesn't look as though it is available on dvd/video

Dennis said...

Scroblene, speaking of old TV shows, did you see the final episode of Lassie?

Lassie and her young master are out exploring when the reckless lad falls down a disused mineshaft and breaks his leg. No one knows where he is: he has been naughty and was confined to his room till he clambered out across a convenient flat roof and jumped to the ground. Assuredly, he will perish if no help can be found!

But Lassie is on hand!

She sets off, heading purposefully towards the ranch-house. Her sense of direction is quite remarkable. Google Maps and SatNav between them could not do better.

Across her route lies a six-lane interstate. Undaunted, Lassie waits for a gap in the traffic.

Unfortunately she misjudges and gets hit by a Mack track. The rear wheels finish the job. Subsequently she is run over 24 times by a succession of various vehicles. In fact this shot forms the backdrop for the closing credits.

I was never much of a fan of those animal shows till then.

DAD: Why, Flipper [or Skippy, or Lardbutt the Hippo] is trying to tell us something!

FLIPPER [etc.]: Rrrk-rkkk-rkkk!

KID: What's that, Flipper [etc.]?

FLIPPER [etc.]: Buy General Dynamics!

Scroblene said...

Just been out Lads!

No wind, just a few lights and a small rodent crossing the road...

Lucien; what are you on?

Dennis Ditto...

Fuchsia - you're in charge!

Scroblene said...

Morning Fuchsia...

Up at sparrow-fart to check this out! Many thanks - this is a good link isn't it!

Lucien - that's solipsism isn't it?

Dennis; the closing credits were later changed to show the dog's handler being given his cards by the Studio manager for substituting the final Lassie (there were 43 in total) for a mongrel called Pisspot.

The way which this was done was used by Blue Peter many years later in a show which never made the screens, as one of the presenters (nameless to protect the innocent) said 'F***' as he (or she - I said bloody nameless didn't I ?), tripped over an old copy of Wisden and cannoned into a three foot pile of milk bottle tops and Fairy liquid containers.

Interesting to note that you remember Skippy though, he was the prototype for all those cornflake packets which gave away free plastic toys, most of which were eaten by poor people as they had more nourishment than some of the actual cereal!

Lucien Modo said...

... it's the only reality.

Lucien Modo said...

Or maybe you are confusing yourself over 'Brittle Galaxy' by Babara Snort, that explores this subject with the eternal figure of the hero Dalton Sparley (1,578 pages).

Dennis said...

Please, it's Spalton Darley, as any fule kno.

Scroblene, I always thought the cardboard was more nutritious than the toys. One lives & learns. BTW I am not "on" anything; I am always like this. Yet does my GP believe me? Does he hell!

Baron Archer said...

Wotcha you old coffin dodger!