Friday, September 17, 2004

Somebody'sgot to set an example. Paul Baker had a great, if dated in terms of character and plot references, essay on Coronation Street on his web site. In it, he made the point that Corrie is often quite instructional in its portrayal of public behaviour. For example, if a character rode a bicycle, she would always be seen wearing the full complement of protective gear—helmet, reflective vest, clips 'round the trouser cuffs, etc. North Americans like to think that the Street is an oasis of gritty social realism, especially compared to American soaps. In Britain, though, Corrie is just mass entertainment, and about as realistic as any country's mass entertainment is when compared to real life in that country.

I was reminded of the concept of Coronation Street characters as exemplars of proper behaviour last week during the eight-hour post-Olympic mega Corrie omnibus. There was a scene where Martin Platt's mobile starts ringing while he's driving through Manchester. Did he answer the phone and continue driving? Did he heck as like. No, he pulled the car into a convenient parking spot, then picked up the phone. One should always devote one's full attention to driving.

I was impressed. Martin, you're a role model to us all. Except for the fact that you've shacked up with a 16-year-old.
I've been bookless on transit for the past few weeks. At least I have metal mags to get me through the drought. They make me paranoid though; they blow my cover. I don't want to upset my seatmate when they glance over and get an eyeful of the half page Cattle Decapitation ad in Terrorizer or whatever I'm hunched over.

Fancy came through for me today and scored me a promo copy of Neil Peart's new book, Traveling Music. It came with the unspoken agreement that I'll be reviewing it for sub-T, so I'd better take notes while I read it.

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