This post started out as a simple discussion on relaxation but I got side-tracked into podcasts, as well as radio and tv quizzes. One of my regular emails had suggested some relaxation, recharging and reflection for the end of the year, so this was going to be about relaxation. It still is to some extent but is focused on media to accompany knitting and crochet. I am including crochet for the first time as I’ve recently delved into Tunisian crochet and will do a later blog post on it.
I find that working on some sort of craft is the best way for me to relax. I really enjoy listening to podcasts and some of my favourites have become almost like friends. Fi Glover and Jane Garvey on Fortunately, are funny, clever and insightful. They have had some fabulous guests with recently, Tim Minchin the comedian, musician and writer of the musical Matilda, who was just fantastic, and Maggie O’Farrell, novelist and winner of the 2020 women’s prize for fiction for her novel, Hamnet. Fi and Jame make me laugh out loud and it is like having a couple of rather opinionated and erudite friends round drinking coffee in the kitchen.
I also do love a good quiz show, as you can probably tell from the Friday quizzes on here. Monday evenings on the TV have over an hour of them in the winter months. Only Connect is a fiendishly difficult game with two teams that have to make connections. I have contemplated putting a Connecting Wall in my quizzes. I may still do so in the future. It is followed by University Challenge which is staple of the UK and has been on air since 1962 with a seven year break between 1987 and 1994. It is currently running its 50th series of the show. The questions are pretty hard and a score of over 8 over half an hour is a good one for me.
Back to radio, I have to mention The Archers. There is a saying in the UK about something being like Marmite which is a very strong salty savoury spread made from yeast extract. It is something that people either love or hate. I love it. The Archers is a radio soap, or continuous drama, in fact the longest running drama in the world. I think it is fair to say that it is very much a Marmite show. It is 70 years old on New Years Day. I became hooked as a military wife living Germany in the 1980’s, where it was a staple of the forces broadcasting company. I think many listeners were enticed into the delights of Ambridge (the fictional village), that way. It was originally created to keep the uk agriculture industry informed of new developments after the second world war. It’s now full of intrigue and delight in equal measures. The intrigue and drama is high and emotional and at other times wonderfully trivial. They covered coercive control in a story line a few years ago and currently have a theme of modern slavery but there has also been the mystery of the missing bunting from the trees on the village green and the annual drama of the ‘Fruit and Produce Show’. It has many faults but I never miss an episode thanks to the internet. It holds the record for the BBC’s online listening figures.
Recharging and reflection will follow in due course.