A Daytime in the Life…
…I try to avoid watching too much TV; I normally try and limit myself to the essential programmes which is basically anything between the morning edition, and about halfway through the afternoon episode of CBBC (if you don’t watch ‘Deadly 60’, you’re a fool). It’s a world where the auctioneer and realtor are king, where a presenter must stake his claim by wearing a quirky hat or tie, and where the least TV friendly presenters mingle with the boomed and busted, ageing celebrities. From ten o’clock I’m subjected to a chipmunk looking chap taking me around knackered houses and speaking to the unlucky fool who’s bought the property to escape the drudgery of his office life. This of course, is ‘Homes under the Hammer’. Alvin returns later to see how they have transformed their calamitous buy only to find failed planning permission and an inside cloaked in Ikea white.
This tale of broken dreams and wasted money used to be followed by To Build or Not To Build, a show so cheap and malnourished that the idea does not even match the title. Here we join people across the UK have already decided and started building their own house, so yes, poor man’s John Bishop, to build is probably going to be the final outcome of this show. This show, amazingly, is no longer being shown and has been replaced by cheeky chappy and everyone’s best mate daan the pab, Dominic Littlewood, and his show ‘Saints and Scroungers’. This investigates the crimes of benefit cheats and features constant assertion of how terrible this is with Littlewood and his indefatigable reminders of, “she bought this with my hard earned money” or “he went here with the money I pay the government”. We get it Dom, you’re one of us, you’re just the local guy on the building site drinking English tea and having a bit of ‘Top Gear’ banter, except with the added bonus of, well, not having to do that. Normally by about ten minutes in I’m done with the whole “united by hatred” thing and have a well-earned Call of Duty break.
On returning from the warzone I often find I’ve lost a few hours to anger and bloodlust. This usually means it’s time to visit a car boot sale/old person’s house/“famous” old person’s house to rummage through shit and pick out little things a bit less shit to sell to a room of fools thinking they’ve found the next ‘Only Fools and Horses’ watch. On ‘Bargain Hunt’ the two teams are accompanied by a couple of aforementioned fools, picked out for wearing the stupidest accessory it seems. After watching a number of episodes (I try to stay away because Dickinson 2 just doesn’t cut it) I’ve come to the conclusion that the fancy dress toting experts actually know fuck all about anything, except for the code to the BBC’s period drama wardrobe. Worst of all, the teams who have trudged around a soggy field all day listening to the wittering of an upper class caricature, watch their choices being sold for pennies and then, as congratulations for winning, receive the loose change from the cameraman’s pocket from his trip to Costa. In fact, the chances of winning a half decent amount of money is emphasized by the amount of times the ridiculous presenter signs off with “Oh well, at least you had fun”.
Dickinson meanwhile laughs in the face of his understudy from the other side (ITV) and his new show where people bring their crap to the studio (It’s so easy, you don’t even have to send an antiques clown round their house!) to barter with a more convincing antique buff. Sometimes the haggling gets so exciting, compared to writing to a new CV for a job that would get me out of the house and away from these shows, that the omniscient Dickinson himself has to step in to lend a hand. The showdowns almost invariably end with the crap bringer refusing the boffins ‘for the sake of the show’ offers and taking it to auction themselves which begs the question, “WHY THE FUCK DIDN’T YOU DO THAT IN THE FIRST PLACE?” Maybe a quick bit of Call of Duty to escape from the agony of daytime living.
A bit later on and it’s normally time for me to go to work and smoulder over a constant world of boredom and monotony. Still, I suppose it could have been worse, I could have watched Doctors.