BBC History …
Lucy Worsley: Jane Austin Behind Closed Doors
James Fox: The Art of Japan
The opportunity to see two particular BBC historians
presenting, via the Internet,
their respective television programmes,
has left me actually overwhelmed
with a sense of gratitude.
No, not for the thoroughly well-done production
relating to two topics of profound interest to me
(this is the BBC, and one would expect
nothing less than technical excellence) –
but for the efforts made by both presenters
… in their personal appearance.
Seeing each of them was, for me,
to have been transported back to the time
when a certain aspect of society was so routine
– back then ! – that I took it for granted;
a once common feature of mature adults,
whose utter eradication from the world
I have never ceased to lament
throughout the last thirty years especially.
Both presenters hosted their respective programmes
dressed like the respectable men and women
amidst whom I was raised.
Unlike the slovenly ‘blue jeans’ androgyny
of the new breed of ‘Independent’ woman –
( ‘beg pardon: “female” – ‘we’ no longer use
the terms “men”, “women” boys” or “girls”
that once distinguished … human beings from animals)
– that featured in a few attempts to find historical viewing
via the BBC, over the past twenty years.
Unlike, too, the ( for me ) insulting, vulgar,
appallingly libidinous, low-cut attire clearly worn
to display the cleavage of one recent
British woman historian.
Here was a man
dressed like ANY mature man
used to dress
on a daily basis;
and a woman
whose appearance is … well,
It was the first time that I can recall
being so overwhelmed with appreciation
and gratitude at Anything that was produced
for the medium of television – an invention
that has spent its entire existence
obliterating the concept of the mother-at-home-family,
children-showing-respect-and courtesy-to-elders, and
while at the same time, making vacuity, vulgarity,
violence, profanity and promiscuity … “normal” …
in the minds of all who view it.
Of course, I made the mistake of glancing down
to see the comments placed from the great mass
of the 21st century viewing public …
….. whose ingratitude shone forth
like some great advertisement
for all that is vicious, selfish, and crude.
“Why are you wearing a suit?” quipped one;
( Well, sonny, it is a once-common concept
that used to be known as “Professionalism” )
several whined because the audio ‘dropped’ in places;
and more told the channel owner to take the video down
and re-upload it to suit their specifications.
Not one of these malignant ingrates
had the self-discipline or decency to say … “Thank You.”
Which is precisely WHY these two presenters
have brought a bit of bitter-sweet cheer into my life –
“bitter-sweet” because, of course,
once the programmes have ended
you are back into the 21st-century reality
of modern human beings.
Here, on these two occasions, the BBC
has set aside its 21st century formula
of profanity and lewdness,
to offer programme hosts who could have
just stepped out of the 1960’s
that I so fondly recall and lament.
What a Pleasure.
What a Relief.
Just to have had a ‘taste’ of the world
that I had the inestimable pleasure of experiencing
in my formative years.
A breath of pure, fresh air … rushing in to
the choking chamber of polluted, poisoned smog
in which one is now required to exist.
What an escape.
I believe, always, in saying ‘Thank You’ –
in giving credit where credit is due.
Sadly, it seems that I cannot thank the person
who ‘posted’ this video, as I would need
a YouTube channel in order to do so.
And, of course, I dare not write
from the other side of the world,
to thank the BBC –
whose Division of Corporate Greed
known as “copyright infringement”
would almost certainly
remove the videos from the Internet
since nothing can be simply ‘shared’ any more
without greed-mongers demanding money.
But, to those two specific presenters in particular:
Thank You; you have allowed me to escape,
( for a little while ) back to a world
that I so desperately miss –
a time when adults were actually capable
of presenting themselves with maturity
and some degree of elegance.
Thank you so very much.
Whilst Miss Worsley’s dress is impeccable
in all her documentaries,
the young man is a new face for me …
and I wonder if I dare hope that this might
set a ‘trend’ for those who actually want to be
perceived as ‘professional’
to begin once again presenting themselves
as being mature enough, and competent enough,
to dress like adults
rather than ill-disciplined, lazy street urchins.
If not, and it transpires that this is but some
I am so very grateful to have experienced it.