My First Blog

9pm on 29th January 2013

…and another thing!

I’ve been told I should blog. And so I am. Matt (a young person) has been here all morning setting it all up while I take notes in an old exercise book of what to do and when so that I don’t screw up too easily on the first few goes. So here we go! I’ve decided to call my blog The Zimmer of Love.

Zimmer of Love cd

It’s a title I like and in fact the title of my very new CD and that’s the front cover. I haven’t decided on the order of the tracks just yet but when I do be sure I shall email, tweet, facebook and blog about it!

Thanks to Matt (a young person) I am now linked to Twitter, Facebook and my own website. In fact I had to set up a Facebook fan page though I can’t remember why right now. (Didn’t write it down in the old exercise book you see.) And the first thing that had to happen apparently was for me to like my own fan page. This now means that the rather absurd message “Mervyn Stutter likes Mervyn Stutter” appears on the site. Not that anyone will know this until 30 people I know from Facebook say they ‘like’ me too, then this new fan page site thingy kicks into action for all the world to see….or maybe only for those who like me. I’m not sure.

I keep checking back to see how many people have “Liked” me so far. I need 30 they say. The stress of waiting for that amount of approval is unbearable. It’s a bit like waiting for a review to come out after an opening night. I chose well over 30 ‘friends’ obviously and I chose very carefully. But on reflection now, that seems even more dangerous. What if those 30 or so who I consider to be safe do not actually respond with Likes? That could be socially awkward the next time I see them!

It reminds of the time I first got one of those Answerphone machines. I went away for the weekend and when I got back there were no messages. First thought? No one likes me, it’s official! I immediately longed for the old days when if you went out, you had no idea who had phoned you or not and if anyone had you just assumed they would phone back if it was important enough. Not now of course. I text – you don’t reply – I hate you. Friendships are short and simple.

And now I blog my first blog. (You never forget your first time do you?) But then again, we all blog now don’t we? We’re all so blogging promiscuous – I blog, you blog, he she or it blogs. So easily declined but what should I actually blog about? Matt (the young person) said to check out other people’s blogs but that leads only to shallow and untruthful mimicry, I reckon. Far better to stick to what you know. For example, I tend to use Facebook to have a quick snarl and/or laugh at what’s happening in the world or around me.

Things like “Last night Kimberley Walsh sang live on TV. Well, I say sang….” or  “Strangely erotic BBC Economics Editor Stephanie Flanders dated both Ed Balls and Ed Miliband…… I’ll never trust her opinion again.” or more regularly on a Saturday night “What is the point of Alan Shearer? Anyone?”

The Zimmer of Love will also be the title of a new comedy series from me this year. I have been banging on for years about the lack of comedy for my generation, the Baby Boomers. Here we are the largest and most powerful social group in the country and we get ignored so regularly. We are the demograph most likely to vote in elections,  most likely to watch Television as scheduled and most likely to pay the BBC licence fee.

My son, like so many young people, watches TV on his laptop using iPlayer. It is provided free. So he watches TV when and where he chooses. He has no need of a TV Scheduler. In fact the TV Scheduler is probably the most useless job in the media at the moment. Even the older generations will tape/ record/whatever their desired programmes and watch them when they choose and not when the some anonymous scheduler chooses.

One of the great benefits of this is, not just taking control of TV, but also it allows you to speed through all the adverts and Bruce Forsyth making programmes so much more enjoyable. But suddenly – suddenly – it’s all change. Hollywood is gobsmacked at the huge amounts of dollars generated by Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. It has now realized the huge amounts of money available from the Oldies if you give them what they want. Doh!!

So now we have Hope Springs, The Quartet, Song for Marion and on TV, Last Tango in Halifax and even the book Thursdays in the Park is a huge best seller because it concerns the staggering observation that old people fall in love…and have sex! Where have these commissioning editor people been all this while?….oh yes locked into the ludicrous notion that everyone wants to only see young people. Doh!!

Even the three series of my own radio comedy Getting Nowhere Fast have been repeated every year for the last 10 years on BBC Radio4 Extra. Why?  Listener demand I’m told. And yet no one can download it. Why? Why did no one notice it’s popularity? Surely they weren’t guilty of looking the other way, you know, towards youth?

But if anyone wishes to pursue ratings and money then the Over 60s is exactly where they should be looking. The clue is there in the title. The Baby Boom generation? There’s a f**k of a lot of us out there. Geddit? So sell us things – be successful!

But the new joy of 2013 is that it’s happening anyway, so hop on board guys. As the Saga Magazine observed recently, the older generation is now setting the cultural agenda. But then we always did. Irritating isn’t it!

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