Gareth’s Blog

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Walking the London that Londoners Love

Posted by garethwatkins on November 7, 2010

I don’t know, you wait 13 months for a blog post and suddenly one comes along all at once. And then it makes no attempt to explain where it’s been all that time. Typical.

Below is a street-by-street guide to a walk through London that I finally typed up for a visiting American that I to follow on Twitter (@LinzLuvs). I’ve taken a few people on this tour in the past and they’ve really enjoyed it and I thought she might. I don’t think she ever even read the guide, to be fair, but its greatness (if I do say so myself) still stands. So I figured that rather than be wasteful I’d let it out into the open for others to use. It may read a little dry, but when employed is a lovely little journey:

This walking tour is designed to give you a real sense of London. The London that Londoners love and the London that Londoners talk about when people ask them about London. It’s not museums, tourist spots and the places the guide books send you. It’s designed to be deviated from, only take part of the way or followed religiously. It’s best done guided by me obviously, but that’s hardly practical. You will pass literally hundreds of bars and restaurants along the route at which to take a break (which I would highly recommend doing).

This walk is best done in the early evening, starting at dusk. The Thames by night is phenomenal, so getting there once night has well and truly set in is perfect.

Start at Great Portland Street tube station (Circle, Hammersmith and City, and Metropolitan lines)

Staying on the right, walk down (keep The Albany Pub on your left) Great Portland Street to Clipstone Street (which will be on your left).

Looking left down Clipstone Street you will be in the best spot in London for a view of the BT Tower. Honestly, it’s a surprisingly good view.

Turning left, walk down Clipstone Street two blocks and turn right down Great Titchfield Street.

Not too much along here but some of London’s smaller pubs and a few blue plaques, but follow it down until you reach Oxford Street.

Ignore Oxford Street on this tour. It’s an afternoon/day/week in itself.

Cross Oxford Street and walk down the little alleyway opposite, just next to Dorothy Perkins (yes, I know it looks creepy, but it isn’t).

You come out on Ramillies Street (by an astonishingly obvious gay gym on your left as you walk down)

At the end of the road you hit Great Marlborough St (that’s “Marl-bruh'”), turn left.

Then first right at Poland Street. Along here you will find Bodeans, which is the best place for an American abroad to get a taste of home.

At the bottom of that, second left, turn left on Broadwick Street.

Then third on the right, down Berwick Street.

By this point, you will have been in Soho since you left Oxford Street. This is the London that those of us who live and work in central London frequent and tourists rarely truly discover.

Please don’t let that scare you. You’re safe.

Got that? Good. It’s about to get seedier.

At the bottom of Berwick Street, go down the dodgy looking alley opposite. No seriously.

At the bottom of which (passing the three or four sex shops) turn left on Brewer Street.

Follow it along until you hit Wardour Street. Then turn right and take the first left onto Old Compton Street.

Welcome to the heart of gay London.

This is also the heart of media (pronounced “meeja”) London.

Essentially, everyone is looking at you and judging, so be awesome!

Walk along Old Compton Street and take the 4th right down Moor Street.

At the end of here you will come out onto Cambridge Circus, next to Priscilla Queen of The Desert the Musical and its massive glittery stiletto.

Cross Charing Cross Road and then Shaftsbury Avenue, essentially diagonally crossing Cambridge Circus, and just along Shaftsbury Avenue on the right is West Street.

Walk the length of West Street to Upper Saint Martin’s Lane, passing The Ivy and The Mousetrap. The Ivy is the restaurant of choice for established celebrities and will probably have a few paps hanging around outside. The Mousetrap is the longest running show in the world.

Turn right down Upper Saint Martin’s Lane, passing Stringfellows on your left, and turn left up Long Acre. Stringfellows being the UK’s most famous strip club.

Walk along Long Acre and turn right at Covent Garden underground station down James Street.

Walk down James Street to Covent Garden itself, stopping briefly to look left along Floral Street at the twisty bridge crossing the road.

Turn left and follow the square round until you reach Culverhay on your left. Turn down here.

Take the first right down Wellington Street.

Follow Wellington Street along until you reach The Strand.

Cross over the strand and head down Lancaster Place, which turns into Waterloo Bridge. As you cross the bridge you will have about the most complete (ground level) 360 degree view of London you can find.

Once you have passed over the River Thames, though still technically on the bridge, take the stairs down on your right.

These lead down to the Southbank

Walk along the Southbank, keeping the river on your right, as far as The London Eye.

From here there are signs directing you to Waterloo underground and mainline station, from where you can get back to pretty much anywhere in London.

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Kevin Smith talks. A lot!

Posted by garethwatkins on October 14, 2009

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing Kevin Smith on stage at the IndigO2. It’s tricky to catagorise what exactly I saw in any way more useful than to describe it as a Q&A session. Which sounds considerably duller than last night’s experience.

Essentially Kevin Smith stands on stage, tells stories, answers questions and entertains the venue. And as simple as that sounds I found myself in complete awe last night as I realised that while I may well be able to stand on stage for the 3 1/2 hours (unbroken!) that Smith did, talking and answering questions, I would probably lack the one thing that made last night work: humour. I just don’t think I could be funny, erudite and entertaining in the way Smith was throughout. But I’ll tell you what…if I ever find myself in the position where I can go on tour just talking about the things that have happened in my life I sure as hell would.

Kevin Smith does, admittedly, have a somewhat obsessive legion of fans (another thing I’m currently lacking) who not only watch his films, but read his comics, read his books, listen to his podcast, read the transcripts of his podcasts and follow every keystroked message on his Twitter account (@ThatKevinSmith). And then there are the ones that are really obsessive. And, following his opening soliloquy to the suicidal toilet that suffered at the girth of his heaviest frame, those fans were first in line to ask the questions. And there were some well-researched questions asked, backed by a knowledge of their prey the likes of which Paxman can only dream.

It’s actually irrelevant what was asked, or what Smith said in response. But rest assured it was detailed, amusing and laced with creative vulgarities. Which is exactly what one expects from the director. We hadn’t turned up to see Cliff Richard after all. I was astounded there was actually anything left to ask the man that recently completed a Twitterthon of 24 hours answering questions.

The most bizarre thing of all is that it’s possible I actually learned a few things last night. A fact that worries me slightly. But the most important thing I learned was that if you ever get a chance to see Kevin Smith in one of these Q&A session do everything in your power to attend.

And take a cushion, there’s no interval.

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Braindump 07/10/09

Posted by garethwatkins on October 7, 2009

I’ve mentioned these before on either here or Twitter, but I still think they’re great.

I want this apartment.

Yet another amazing picture set from this lot.

I love these 1 minute movies.

This hurts my brain.

This makes me happy.

So, so wrong. But so amusing.

Projections, not CGI. Unbelievable.

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Robb Slipped

Posted by garethwatkins on October 5, 2009


I wrote this about 6 or 7 years ago for an example edition of a magazine someone was hoping to get published. Needless to say that the magazine never made it to production, like so many of this someone’s ideas. But I’ve always rather admired his dogged perserverance in pursuit of his ideas and I always rather liked my contribution to this particular idea. So I thought I would get it up here for others to see, if for no reason other than it means it feels like it got at least close to publication. I’ve edited it slightly before posting it, but only really for spelling, formatting and the removal of a trace reference to a character in the original draft, later removed, who somehow managed to still get their name in the story.


The drunken girls clattered down the stairs.  Robb slipped.


Robb Slipped birth certificate


Growing up in care wasn’t as bad as the look people gave him suggested.  In fact it was fun.  There were other kids about for starters, something Robb had wished for endlessly while he was at home.  The only thing that wasn’t at the Upton Downes Care Facility was his family.  His parents.  Sometimes he couldn’t think of anything but Mum and Dad.  But most of the time he just thought about one thing.  No, not that.  Robb never thought about that.  As far as he was concerned, girls and boys just had different toilets.  All Robb thought about was tubes.

When he was younger his father had tried to teach him about a process called mind mapping.  His father had read a book about memory improvement which he saw advertised in the back of the Daily Mail.  His father had struggled to explain the concept to Robb, so he dumbed it down for him.

“Imagine each idea like a station on the London Underground.  Every idea is linked to another one.  So if you ever need to remember something else you just travel along the line until you arrive at the next station.”

Robb’s first idea had been to memorise the tube map.  Every station.  Every line.  Every junction.  Even stations that had closed down, but because he couldn’t get to them, they became fleeting thoughts and brief moments of hazy genius.  And right at the heart of his map was his complete knowledge of the Underground system.

When Robb was eighteen he left school with a D in Technology A level, having made an illuminated representation of the London Underground map.  While at school Robb had made friends with Mr. Kenning, the school care taker.  He used to do odd jobs for him and after leaving school became his assistant.  Kenning used to pay him, rather than the school, out of his own pocket.  Robb didn’t know it, but Kenning admired Robb for getting on with his life despite having Downe’s Syndrome.

Tonight had turned out to be one of Robb’s favourite nights of his life.  He had been attending the annual general meeting of his local London Underground Society.  That night, for the first time, Robb had found out that he was to become the general secretary for the next year.  He couldn’t remember a time before when he had wanted to shout and tell every person he saw what had happened to him this evening.  He was just itching to get home to tell Mr. Kenning his news.


Still recapping the can, leaving the indigo paint running down the walls in places, Jason sits himself down on an early morning tube.  Pulling out a long thin black notebook from one of the numerous pockets on his outfit, he begins to jot down the details of his newest tag.

  • STATION:                  Chancery Lane
  • LOCATION:              East bound Central Line platform, roof
  • DESCRIPTION:        NewMark
  • DATE:                          17.10.02
  • TIME:                           0612 hrs

Unusually Jason had been out tagging without his crew.  It was one of those rare mornings when he had woken surprisingly early, first train of the day early, and hadn’t been able to get back to sleep.  On mornings like this he had been known to get up, pull his shit together, and head out onto the tube.  It was risky at this time of day.  All the people on the tubes were suits or workers.  They were all alert and crotchety.  It was a crowd of people more likely to grass essentially.

The other downside was also that it meant he was less creative with his work.  Not the location, but the art itself.  Without Copycheck he was reluctant to be too creative, for fear of making a mistake.  So it always felt less fruitful first thing in the morning.  But today was looking up, literally.  He had managed to get a roof.  It had been tricky, but getting a tag on the ceiling always looked special.  Jason definitely thought today was starting to look up.

As the tube pulled into St Paul’s station, a chubby guy in a suit boarded and sat opposite Jason.  Still writing notes Jason didn’t really notice him.  The two of them sat opposite each other, one jotting something down in a notepad, the other rocking gently with his hands clasped between his knees.  He was starring at the line map above Jason’s head.

“Your Jason.”

Jason, responding to this, looked up, but gave nothing away with his expression.

“Excuse me?”

“Your Jason,” exactly the same matter-of-fact tone as before.

“Sorry, you must have me confused with someone else.”

Jason had been preparing to be defensive, his natural fear being that he was in trouble.  But when he had looked at the swaying person in front of him and seen the almost universal image of a Downe’s victim he had realized he was OK.

“No, your Jason,” Robb repeated.

“And where exactly is it you think you know me from?”

“You’re the gay guy from school.”

Now Jason did become defensive.  This sort of information was something virtually no one knew.  It certainly wasn’t common knowledge when he was at school.  In fact, it wasn’t even common knowledge now.  Copycheck was his only friend who knew, and that was only due to a chance meeting when they were out “working” late one night in Farringdon Station.

“No, you really have got the wrong person.”

His tone more insistent and aggressive now as looked around to check no one else was on the carriage.

Robb started to give Jason a biography. Jason had heard this sort of thing before when he had been arrested for possession for the second time.  Hearing a policeman read his bio had made him feel uneasy, but this was far worse.  More personal…and accurate.

“Jason Neumark, age 27, Dr. Chaloners Boys School, studied art A-level…”

As Robb spoke, his eyes moved along the map above Jason’s head, each station revealing a new piece of information.

‘Yeah, yeah.  Right, whatever.  Who are you?”

Jason had blurted out an interruption.  It was frankly a little freaky having someone you didn’t know spouting your juvenile life at you.

“I’m Robb.”

“And…”  Jason finished.

“I was two years below you in school.”

“And how did you know I was…”



“Mark told me.”

Mark was Jason’s one and only regret.  It was him that had confirmed Jason’s suspicions about himself.  One night, working late in art class, just the two of them, Mark had quickly and briefly confirmed his suspicion right in front of his still life.  And for that brief moment Jason’s life had stood still.  It was only a kiss, but it was the kiss which had changed Jason.

As this memory flew through Jason’s mind, he recalled a handicapped kid, younger than him, being in Mark’s circle of mates.  Robb seemed as likely a person as any to be that kid.

“…Jay the gay.”  Robb broke Jason’s train of thought.


“That’s what we used to call you:  Jay the gay.”

The tube pulled into the next station.  Jason had no idea which station it was, but he got off.  He needed to escape.  As the doors starts to glide shut, he heard a farewell.

“Bye bye, Jay the gay.”


Alison was walking along a staff only section of the platform, towards the locker room.  Her bag over her shoulder, more than just a handbag.  It was a large record bag, with a Smirnoff Ice logo on the side.  The kind given away in promotions in pubs.  Inside were folders full of notes and books full of information to learn.  She was, as usual, early.

Five eleven, slender and blonde.  From behind a potential ten.  Busty and above average from the front, a narrow thick rimmed glasses crossing her face like the arms of a letter “t.”  She had the look of a secretary.  Alison was a solid eight.

Due to her punctuality, she was ambling along reading the adverts that disappeared in an endless mural down the tunnels.  Passing the gate and going under the platform cameras she headed for the locker room door.  Then she heard that static crackling from the tracks.  It was a sound she had grown to like.  It meant she was on time.  The last train was about to enter the station.  It had four stops after this one, and then a quick shunt into its siding.  Then the tracks would be switched off and her work would begin.

Alison loved to stand right by the wall at the start of the platform, her face flush to the walls of the blackened tunnel.  Her eyes wide open and staring straight ahead, waiting.  Anticipating the train rushing into the station inches from her face.

Then there was a different noise.  Coming from the tunnel joining the platform from upstairs.  It was a flat footed clapping of feet.  Someone awkwardly running for the imminent tube.  To her later surprise, she found herself distracted enough to look at the person entering the platform, crescendo-ing to a halt like horses hooves stopping on cobbled streets.  The person stopped at the edge, still catching his balance from the momentum he had developed.

And another noise.  The unmistakable sound of stilettos pinging off concrete.  There was a girls’ night out trying desperately to catch the last train home.  She looked at them.  The man on the platform looked at them.  The train exploded into the station and Alison jumped back.  Natural reactions pulling her to safety.


Shepherds Bush platform 2 Westbound – the stage.

Robb (center stage), Alison (stage left), drunken girls (entering stage right), Jason and Copycheck (back centre stage) – the players.

One Split Second – the play.

There is a cacophony.  The thunder of a man’s stamping feet.  The lightening steps of heels on hard stairs.  The buzz of the rails.  The hyena laugh of drunken female voices.  The frame-advance motion.

The girls spill onto the platform, drawing the attention of everyone.  Robb looks right, his body still adjusting on the axis of his ankles.  Alison looks right, steadying her balance with a hand on the wall beside her.

Fade up lights, center stage.

Copycheck kneeling, packing spray cans into a canvas bag, facing away towards Jason’s completed work.  An explosion of reds and yellows surrounded by steel blue outlines spelling out the word “SLAM!”  Jason is approaching Robb from behind.  He is the only one not watching the girls entrance.

A train enters from stage left, in front of all the action.  Alison is last seen jumping away from the entering carriages, turning her head in surprise to look at the tubes metal sides.  Robb is confused.  Distracted from his stopping by the girls’ noise, distracted from them by the noise of the tube, and distracted from both by his body’s continuing rotation.  He is dangerously close to the point of no return, when he will need to take one more step.  Something the platform’s edge will not allow.

Jason, behind Robb, is extending both his arms towards Robb’s back.  Reaching, for one purpose or another, towards Robb.  The pair silhouetted by Jason’s fresh work.  Robb falls just as the train reaches him.

Fade to black.  A scream is heard.


Robb Slipped death certificate

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Braindump 20/09/09

Posted by garethwatkins on September 20, 2009

Smashing Pumpkins go all NIN on us.

Yes it’s an advert, but it’s mesmerising. If they want viewers to stop skipping ad breaks on their V+ box (ro Sky+, if you’re that way inclined), make adverts as good as this.

I really like this idea.

Just plain cool.

Part of me can’t help thinking that they should have arrested the men, but not freed the women.

Awesome, creepy, obsessive.

This was apparently released by NASA, who are now my favourite space agency for sure.

A little bit of me is sad as this may well be the most interesting thing that ever happens to this man. Stil, great pub story.

Want to watch Hulu from the UK? Here’s how. This is probably legally dubious, so use it at your own risk.

One of the single best Parkour/Freerunning videos I’ve ever seen. The movement is incredible, the video’s well made, the soundtrack’s great, I could rave about this for ages.

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Posted by garethwatkins on September 17, 2009

I had been hoping to knock out a big steaming braindump tonight, but in the last 36 hours my Hotmail account has been hacked. The password has been changed and I can no longer access it. The same is true for my Facebook account.

Now I can live without Facebook, although it does mean I may lose touch with a few people. Those that seem to have forgotten that email exists and works perfectly well. Or those that haven’t quite yet grasped Twitter’s superiority. Losing the Hotmail account is a little infuriating though.

While I rarely use Hotmail as my main email address with friends, preferring my work account due to their sensible approach to email in the workplace (essentially, don’t be a twat) and it’s ubiquity in my (week)day to (week)day life. I do use Hotmail as a place to send myself messages from work so that I can access the information anywhere. It’s like my braindump before I dump the edited brain on here. It also contains things like my itunes e-receipts, membership information and other miscellaneous but handy rags.

And that’s where the real concern comes in.

Is there enough information in there to initiate credit fraud? Can my financial information be traced enough to be stolen? And, more importantly, does this compromise friends “working for our government” in foreign countries who only know this email address?

These are all questions that will be answered one way or another in time. Just how much time now depends on Microsoft and Facebook and their customer services departments. Both have been contacted via (work) email and both have responded with automated messages. And I understand this response, I really do. Most people who use the internet are idiots. That fact simply has to be true as most people are idiots.

So I politely furnished them with the information they required to confirm that I wasn’t an idiot (confirmation of self help steps taken, IP addresses, etc.) and I now await a response. Microsoft say I should have one within 24 hours, Facebook aren’t as specific. Mind you, Microsoft’s email also purported to be from “Max” in an attempt to convince me that I was dealing with a human. They should probably have just signed it off D.A.R.Y.L. It would at least have demonstrated some real human input somewhere along the line.

With this new-found zen-like peace, separated as I am from a segment of my social network, I have time to reflect on the emotions I’m feeling about this intrusion. I’ve been burgled before and never particularly felt my privacy had been invaded. Luckily, the burglars that have been at my stuff have never been ones to leave a “signature” behind. I think what has consumed me most, mentally, in relation to this is the question of “why?” Not an existential, “why, Lord, oh why?” but a logical understanding of the motivation.

The burglars wanted my stuff because they thought some of it might be worth a few quid and there wasn’t exactly a high level of security to prevent them from getting at it.* But they had no idea of the contents of my email account and my Facebook stuff isn’t really hidden as little is on Facebook. A thought which leads you to consider more vindictive intent. Was I targeted specifically?

Chances are that I’m not the focus of an internet scam, but a small fish just big enough to get caught in a large net. But what if I’m wrong? Who would want to hack me? The best I can manage is that it’s related to a programme I’m connected with through my job and a potentially unwise relationship stemming from that. Something it’s clearly best I don’t discuss at the moment and isn’t really that interesting in the first place. Or…Derren Brown is setting me up to be the star in the grand finale of his current Channel 4 series.

What has come out of all this is the unsympathetic abuse of friends who can’t understand why I’m not yet on Gmail. Firstly, I am on Gmail, but the intention was that my Gmail account would be a business-use account (job applications, an address to give people I don’t like but are handy to know, that sort of thing). Secondly, there is nearly a decade’s worth of crap stored in my Hotmail account. If I’m shifting email accounts I’m going to have to do some tidying, cleaning and shifting – it’ll be like moving house. And thirdly, if I’m going over to Google’s email system, I’d prefer a different address to the one I currently have. But I really don’t want a googlemail address. If I’m shifting, I want Gmail. But it’s starting to look like I may have no choice but to transfer over for my own protection.

I’ll keep you updated and I’ll hopefully have a braindump of substantial proportions to offer soon. And yes, I realise that if I want the information I’m sending myself from work I can just copy the emails from the sent items on my work account and forward them to my Gmail account. I realise this because I’m not one of the idiots.

*Please note, potential thieves, security has been increased significantly – I now have guard ferrets.


As a result of the initial complaint, the reply to the automated email from “Max” and the subsequent reply to “Diane” I was emailed with details of how to access my Hotmail account. And it worked. And it doesn’t appear that any damage has been done to it. None the less I’ll be transfering my stuff to my Gmail account as fast as I can. This also allows me to request Facebook to send me an email that allowed me to change my Facebook password. I have regained access to Facebook. Now I can continue to do nothing on there.

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My defense to Fry’s Compliance Defiance

Posted by garethwatkins on September 6, 2009

Almost exactly a year ago, Stephen Fry posted one of his brilliant podcasts on his website. I was, and remain, a rabid fan of the man and always look forward to almost everything he does. I know far too much about the origins of the printing press because of him. But this podcast really struck a chord with me, because he was talking about me and my kind.

At this years Edinburgh International TV Festival Stephen Fry repeated this rant, almost word for word.

When I first heard the podcast last year I was moved enough to write a reply on his website forums and a year on, following his repetition, I felt it only right to repeat my counter argument. This time, here, for a different, and unfortunately smaller, audience. From reading the original thread, there’s little suggestion that the Frymaniacs on his site paid much mind to my comments. There’s even less evidence to suggest that he read them. And it seems very unlikely that he will stumble upon them here:

    Posted Wed Sep 3rd, 2008 12:43am Post subject: Podcast 5 – Shooting People in the Face (Compliance)

I can’t believe I’m about to do this, but I’m going to disagree with Stephen Fry.

Not with the sentiment, but with the choice of target: compliance departments. I work in a compliance department and I am one of those people who would have had to inform his director friend that they had to wear their seatbelts in the show. Not because I think that they should, but because the rules I am ensuring the show complies with dictates that they must.

Good compliance departments and those that work in them are not there to restrict those that produce television. In most cases, they are the people most likely to be trying to push the rules to their absolute limit. I assume that the decision to enforce the actors to wear their seatbelts were based on one of the following trains of thought.

If the actors are driving cars on public roads, for however long, it is illegal for them to do so without wearing a seatbelt. No matter how unrealistic it may seem for them to put them on, knowingly forcing them to break the law would put a lot of people in trouble.

If the cars were flatbed mounted, which may have allowed the actors to not wear they’re seatbelts (although I’m not sure of the legalities of this particular convolution), or they were driving on private roads, then the decision has been made for the protection of the viewer.

If the latter is the case, then this does strike me as an odd decision to have been made. They would presumably have been acting according to their interpretation of section 1.1 and 1.2 of the Ofcom code (I’ve stuck them at the bottom of this post. Don’t worry, they’re briefer than I am). Unfortunately this decision is rendered comlpetely ridiculous when you read 1.3 (again, at the bottom). Spooks is a post watershed programme, the content of which viewers are entirely aware. So it’s not that children can’t see people on television wearing seatbelts when driving cars but can see people being shot in the face, it is that children shouldn’t be watching television at 9pm at night and therefore shoudn’t be witnessing either act.

There is of course the great possibility that this is a BBC specific directive and in which case it is as ridiculous as most of the BBC’s other working practices. And I say that as an ex-BBC employee (no, I wasn’t fired and I didn’t work for their compliance department).

Now for my stance…it’s fucking stupidity to force them to have seatbelts on. It reflects no kind of situational reality and seperates the viewer from a “dramatically realistic” representation of an emergency. But then again, the last time I walked through the east end I’m sure I heard a lot more blue language than I’ve noticed on certain televisual representations of the area. I’ve also noticed than when talking with friends they tend not to emit bar-and-tone bleeps instead of saying “fuck” or “cunt.” And I’m reasonably sure that Mr Fry doesn’t do so either, despite the fact that his appearances on QI seem to imply that he does. I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiments in this podgram, as I do with almost everything else that Stephen Fry says (and I wish that didn’t sound so sycophantic), but the people in the compliance departments are rarely the people that make the rules. They simply ensure that those who work by them comply with them.

To finally finish with a small personal defence, the sort of person who works in a compliance department is rarely the idiot described in the podgram. I hope this post, for those that have managed to read it this far, demonstrates that I am, I think, one of the people Stephen Fry would like to think was listening to his podgrams. “Wise” and “sensible” seem strong descriptions to apply to myself, but I don’t think I’m the polar opposite either.

And it is not us compliance people that make the rules, unfortunately. The rules are ultimately created based on the opinions of the public. If enough people complain about something rules get made. And I’m sure we all know about the sort of people who complain…just mention doing something unpleasant to a cat (it’s all very funny on QI, Mr Fry, but you aren’t the one who has to deal with these idiots!). So ultimately the rules are made by you (and me) who, as members of the public, don’t write to Ofcom (or even the BBC directly) complaining that they were wearing their seatbelts in a situation where they clearly wouldn’t be. As part of the public, we’re all to blame.

And finally, while I’m writing in the hope you may read this, please keep the podgrams coming. I love them. Where this one made me a little riled, but also amused, the last one nearly brought me to tears. Unfortunately it nearly did so as I walked through the doors of my office making me look like a big girly girl in front of the other compliance types who were busy looking for untied shoe laces in late night drama series.

Ofcom Code
1.1 Material that might seriously impair the physical, mental or moral development of people under eighteen must not be broadcast.
1.2 In the provision of services, broadcasters must take all reasonable steps to protect people under eighteen.
1.3 Children must also be protected by appropriate scheduling from material that is unsuitable for them.

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Braindump 05/09/09

Posted by garethwatkins on September 6, 2009

A few links that distracted me in my day of doing nothing.

Ladies, if you think fitting three women in a cubical is complicated, just think what we have to go through. (thanks to @SeveralBillionM)

SO. MUCH. FUN! Where can I buy the small one?

It’s like Joseph Jackson’s wet dream.

This just caught my eye.

If I ever get to use any of these in coversation, I would be so happy. (thanks to @Alyssa_Milano)

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Belated bonus bank holiday braindump 31/08/09

Posted by garethwatkins on September 1, 2009

I’ll admit it, I want that costume.

Now that’s the way to do it!

Nope, not a clue either. But I like it.

Smile for the camera.

Seriously, prisoners are inventive.

I’m assuming he passed with flying colours.

Another dancing Transformer. It still makes me happy.

It’s like a Tarantinorgasm.

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Braindump 31/08/09

Posted by garethwatkins on August 31, 2009

I just want to have them on the coffee table to tempt bravado from guests.

This is a little bit of genius.

Kind of glad I didn’t read this before I took that return flight to Canada.

Gross, but you just can’t help but want to see it.

You need to know this stuff. You’ll thank me later.

Hi. Let me introduce you to the creepiest thing ever.

Practical. And helps locals spot the tourists and know who to avoid.

This seems like an astonishingly bad idea.

Actually, I would have dated this person.

This really shouldn’t be as funny as it is.

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