Tuesday, 15 November 2011


How marvellous to read the new ABC Radio National line-up. As a serious radio addict, it is a tremendous relief to discover that there will be even less to tempt me on the airwaves than there has been up till now. I mean, sure, I will now have to steadfastly resist the charms of not only those 'remarkable broadcasters' Philip Adams (you may not have heard his marvellous joke about gladdies, he is so sparing with it, sadly), Robyn Williams (I never knew a chip on the shoulder could be audible until I listened to him), Alan Saunders (the man who broadcasts as if he is giving dictation to a class full of English as a Foreign Language Students) and Geraldine Doogue, (her breathily eager head girl tones and occasional high pitched giggles are the ultimate ingredients to make Saturday morning perfect), but also those of Waleed Aly and Fenella Kernebone, both of whom have clearly insinuated themselves into the ranks of much-loved (by management) Radio National contributors, (no, I can't explain it either).

And of course there will be the all but impossible to tear myself away from new offering, 'The Shortlist', which threatens to 'unpack new ideas, trends and obsessions with a...sometimes cheeky look at the zeitgeist.' Presumably someone in publicity is saving the other 'z' word (i.e. 'zany') for an audio trailer. There cannot be any other reason for its exclusion from the blurb.

Also, I will have to ration my attention when it comes to 'The Body Sphere', 12 weeks in which contributors will 'discuss, critique and celebrate the human body' (with lengthy reference, no doubt, to the GLBTI community, if past form is anything to go by [not to mention including a repeat of the fabled series, 'Living with a Prosthetic Limb, Parts I-IV {oh goodie, I only ever caught a bit of Part 3, dammit}]).

So, thank you, ABC, for ensuring I go out and attack the couch grass instead of wasting my time swilling cups of tea by the wireless. I'm not sure it was quite the role the founding fathers imagined for the corporation, but  who can argue against fresh air?

(The author of this blogpost would like to point out that she also hates 'The Slap' and 'Crownies', thinks 'Australian Story' relies far too heavily on sentiment and tear-jerking and is absolutely delighted that 'New Inventors' has been axed, so she is clearly a narrow-minded and impossible-to-please old bigot.)


  1. Did you at least laugh at Wilfred? Hang on, that was SBS

  2. I believe a very earnest public intellectual of your acquaintance used to hurry home from school to listen to Blue Hills, Barbara - perhaps the axeing of that fine production was a turning point in Australian cultural life?

  3. Majestic theme tune fades to murmur of bushflies and roar of a distant engine drawing nearer, accompanied by the squeaks and metallic rattles of an ancient ute. Noise of gears shifting down, a long slow creak as vehicle comes to a halt and then, almost simultaneously, the sounds of a car door and a flyscreen swinging open on unoiled hinges.
    Woman's voice, calling: 'G'dday, Charlie, how's it going? Are you going up to the top paddock, are you?'
    Charlie: 'Yeah, that's right, Marge - I just need to check the mob of sheep dad put up there last week.'
    'You'll need to watch out for fly strike, this time of year, I reckon.'
    'That's what I was telling dad, but he's flat out filling in the BAS forms at the moment.'
    'Cec is the same. And when he's finished the BAS he's got that electronic tagging stuff to do as well.'
    'Tell me about it. It's the same at our place. In fact I'd better get moving. I've still got to get over to Stumpy's Creek to look at a steer that's not doing too good.'
    'Well don't forget to close that gate after you, will you? We don't want stock out on the road again.'
    'No worries, Marge. And tell Cec to give me a call next time he needs help yarding the cattle.'
    'Thanks, Charlie, I'll let him know. If it doesn't rain soon he won't have much choice about it. Prices are a bit flat though, but that's what you get in a drought.'
    This could go on for hours.