Saturday, January 16, 2010

Auntie Beeb

Strangely enough, that was what my grandmother was known as to some of the family; my Auntie Jean (she who is toasted at safari suppers) still refers to Gran as "Aunt Beeb".

In this instance, though, I'm referring to the worldwide institution that is the British Broadcasting Corporation. Specifically, the little corner of that vast empire that sits quietly doing its own thing in Seymour Road, Plymouth.

Yesterday saw Mrs The Millbrooker kindly acting as taxi driver, dropping me off outside the august institution's portals and collecting me at the appropriate hour after I'd waffled away with Simon Pauley for as long as studio time permitted.

It's been many a long year since I last graced a radio studio. I recall, nearly thirty years back, sitting amongst the bunch of over-excited teenagers that constituted the band "Dol's House" and being interviewed by Andy Batten-Foster (the one with the hair below) after winning a regional final of the TSB Rock School competition.

But I digress into the dimly lit halls of the past; back to yesterday's adventures....

After the very friendly receptionist made me welcome with a cup of coffee, I was taken through to a small studio somewhere deep within the bowels of the building. Radio studios tend to be quite small, airless places and this was no exception.

Our old friend Simon P, he of Insight Radio and electric-bicycle-crashing fame, was already on line, listening to the sound engineer telling me to take a pew; I got Simon's dulcet tones in my ears as soon as I plonked the cans onto my shell-likes. Did you notice how I got professional sounding jargon in there? "Cans" - that'll be headphones, then. In recording studio circles, speakers are referred to as "bins", you know. Heaven only knows why.

I've tried to find a photo online of something that resembles the little room in which I wittered away to Glasgow, but every image that I've found seems far too posh. Yes, even this one.The hour and a quarter flew past as Simon and I gassed on to each other about food, poor eyesight, more food, life-the-universe-and-everything, red wine and just a smidgen more about food.

I haven't heard any of the results yet, I believe that the first of the six "blind tastings"* recipes is to be aired on Tuesday and something like weekly after that with the possibility of doing it all again in 5 or so weeks.

The plot to take over the airwaves from Millbrook continues apace (insert maniacal, evil sounding, laughter sound effect here).


*"Blind Tastings"© is an original programme idea by me - no nicking it.

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