Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

22.10.14

How to write, by Johnny Speight.

Till Death Us Do Part writer Johnny Speight satirises the pseudo-intellectual public broadcast culture in explaining his writing technique:
... any big words would have been lost, not only on their audiences but on (the actors) as well. And as (they) didn't pay you any more for big words it seemed best to stick with the little ones. It was more economical because they took up less room on the paper. ...

I never had a lot of time for big words. They're harder to spell for one thing and if you stutter like I do they're harder to speak as well. I always tried to slip out little words before my stutter notices them. ...

Of course this was a handicap for a writer because only being able to use little words which everyone could understand, I had to be very careful what I said. I couldn’t hide behind an indecipherable display of semantics. I was out in the open, and on my own, without a dictionary to protect me. ...

I figured that most radio audiences were ordinary, simple people like my mum and dad, and that a simple lad like myself with a simple gift for simple words might have a warm-hearted appeal for them. ... Home spun philosophic humour written in simple four letter words.

Anyway, with my little words poking out of my new Smart and Weston suit I took myself off to the B.B.C. ...
It Stands To Reason. A Kind of Biography by Johnny Speight. M&J Hobbs in association with Michael Joseph, London, 1973

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Simple words? Forget it. The bureaucracy has been awash with indecipherable semantics for as long as it has existed, but there’s no excuse for the private sector. From today's Herald Sun (no link):
Drinks giant Lion has secured its spot at racing's forefront through a five-year sponsorship deal with the Victoria Racing Club.

The deal, centred around the James Boag's Premium brand, aligns Lion with the Melbourne Cup Carnival, kicking off with Victoria Derby Day on November 1.

... A "brand experience area" known as the James Boag's Premium Celebration Deck will be set up on the front lawn at Flemington.
Translated: Starting on Victoria Derby day, racegoers can sample James Boag’s beer at a bar set up by new spring carnival sponsor Lion.

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Top nine bar songs revised.

At night when the brand experience areas close down Brandy walks through a silent town

I matched the man behind the brand experience area for the jukebox/and the music takes me back to Tennessee

The guy behind the brand experience area was watching Ironsides on TV

Well Mr Harper couldn’t be here cause he stayed too long at Kelly’s brand experience area again

And at the edge of the brand experience area sat a girl names Doris and oh that girl looked nice

Then afterwards we drop into a quiet little brand experience area and have a drink or two

And I’ve got swingin’ doors a jukebox and a brand experience area

I looked down the brand experience area, at the brand experience area tender/He said, Now what do you want, Johnny?/One bourbon, one scotch, and one beer

The Gatlin boys just laughed at him when he walked into the brand experience area

Oh it’s lonesome away from your kindred and all
By the campfire at night where the wild dingoes call
But there’s nothing so lonesome, morbid or drear
Than to stand in the brand experience area of a pub with no beer

2 comments:

Melbourne Girl said...

Love it!

Nothing like a real brand experience to ensure you're able to quench your thirst...and use a whole lotta words to help fill a page to justify your existence

Dr. Alice said...

Scathing, and appropriate.
I hate crap writing, but those revised lyrics are hilarious.