Sunday, January 08, 2006
Mother's Little Helper
I'm addicted to the BBC.
This goes way beyond the anglophilia of my youth, when I'd stay indoors and watch painfully unfunny British sitcoms (or rather, funny maybe the first time around, but progressively less so on subsequent viewings and yes I'm looking at you Are You Being Served?) or try on a "Cockernee" accent (ok, I want you to imagine that kids, because if you think a ten year old black girl trying to be James Spader is funny, you can only imagine how truly awesome it must have been for people watching me attempt to be Eric Idle. And if you're saying to yourself "but Eric Idle is not a Cockney" then you are beginning to get a sense of the fractured way I consumed UK culture. But whatever, man. You don't know me!)
So, anyway, I spend 9 hours a day pulling levers and stamping forms and disconnecting vaccuum tubes and answering calls at the Ministry of Information and it would all be absolutely unbearable if it were not for BBC Radio. I have my headphones on all day, and woe betide the a-hole who interrupts me when I'm listening to Lord Peter Wimsey finesse a case or Jonathan Ross expound on old ladies' bras or Armando Iannucci skewer some ludicrous phenomena on The Charm Offensive.
I listen to radio dramas. I listen to comedies that used to be on the television but have been remade for radio. I listen to panel games. I listen to history shows. I listen to scientific shows. I listen to talk shows, documentaries, call-ins, one-offs, long-running series, and interviews.
I can't stop myself. Furthermore, I don't want to. The last time I poked my head out and listened to the background noise at work, I heard someone say "It's weird, isn't it? How you can have the same birthstone as someone, but have a different astrological sign?"
I also listen to Car Talk, This American Life, Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant (better than the later podcasts available on Guardian Unlimited, which are largely a retread to my mind, but anyway, you can download those here) and the occasional T.D. Jakes sermonette here. If you are fixing your mouth to say something about that, don't even go there because I don't want to hear it. Jesus and I got it on lock, so just relax.
If, however, you want to talk to me about the weirdly unsettling megachurch phenomenon, the conscription of black clergy into neo-conservative power plays, or just what in the world is going on with some of [black] gospel music's biggest stars (somebody please explain Donnie McClurkin to me), then please do speak your peace, because I do want to hear about that.