Secretary, Biro, Drummond's Posterior, Strike!
I have succumbed. After a couple of years jotting away on a basic WordPress site, this site is now being revamped and will be up next week in its new glory and no doubt with a few glitches. I may be even off air for a short while.
But its a bit like buying a new suit and underwear or, alas, may be like wearing your grandmother’s newly knitted Christmas cardigan.
There will be notable changes. For a start there’s an end to the front page biography and instead you will see a much better display of the latest stories.
The biography is off the front because no matter how good I claim my background is people are still going to treat me like a total dork.
I am even going to the extent of having someone check my copy for literals. (I repeatedly speed read and miss stuff)
For 30 years as a journalist I have a had a sub-editor doing this and in the first few years I could avoid all this by just putting the copy down a phone line…from the office pub, which is where we all were much of the time in the chauvanistic eighties leaving our jackets hung on the back of our chairs………….as in
‘Yes operator we will take a reverse charge call from Andrew Drummond. Where is he?’ Muffled sound from AD and seagull noises provided by the office comedian.
‘Ah good. Andrew Drummond here. Newscopy are you ready? (sounds of copytaker or telephone reporter as they called themselves, rolling copypaper into typewriter) ‘Ok mate. This isn’t going to be long is it? It’s near my break.
Nope. Four pars. Ready?
Catchline Resignation. Memo to news desk and editor (sound of clack clackety clack. ding)
Dateline: The Printer’s Pie (clackety clack clack ding)
First par. Open quotes.
‘Dear Editor comma par (clackety clack clack ding)
I shall no longer be crossing the picket line in Wapping (clackety clack etc)
still in quotes
‘In fact from tomorrow night I will actually be open caps ON close caps the picket line where I will be joining your legal secretary and I will stay there for a couple of days throwing bricks at the open caps TNT close caps lorries before going on a round the world first class trip
‘Four double G&Ts, a double Pink Gin and more wine for the gals!
Linda, Angie, those Ra-Ra skirts are rather becoming.’
‘No copytaker that was someone else.’
‘Copytaker: Ok hang on a minute changing page’
point par still in quotes
‘This has nothing to do with the fact that while I was asleep in bed last night the legal secretary, a member of the initial caps Society of Graphical and Allied Trades close initial caps open brackets full caps (SOGAT) close full caps close brackets scrawled the word open subquote ‘scab’ close subquote across my chest in a biro comma, and then somehow used my anus as a penholder rendering it rather pointless to return to my desk point par still in quotes
‘It is much more to do with the fact that you are writing the headlines before I have actually written the stories Point copy ends
Now needless to say the editor to whom I sent my resignation is much richer than I am so the site will also have some advertising to offset time and costs involved in writing stories and background which is going to be of little interest to people back in the UK.
So thanks to them and your support. And oh wait. Apparently you will have to use a genuine email when posting here. No more God@God.com or firstname.lastname@example.org . Otherwise the site does unmentionable things.
Privacy will of course be respected but Mr. Angry, Mr. Slobberer, and Mr Plain Nasty should stick to the normal English language forums in Thailand which are tailor made for their use.