Tag Archives: Terry Wogan

Eurovision 2018

Strobe lighting. Eurovision was better without it. I can close my eyes as well as the next witch. But when I do, and especially at this time of night, the inevitable becomes, well, inevitable, and I fall asleep.

Daughter was saying she liked the German entry, and I was puzzled, not having noticed it. I dozed off with Serbia and completely missed Germany.

So what do I think? I liked Ireland. Norway wasn’t bad, and Spain got better for each short repeat. I liked Slovenia’s hair, and Finland’s outfit. France was OK, and that’s something I don’t often say. The vampire needed an interpreter. Or did he?

Didn’t mind who won out of Cyprus and Israel. I disliked both. And Daughter was somewhat scandalised at my negative view of the Swedish entry. Well, it did nothing for me. And if the singer is who Daughter reported him to be, then he’s part of a dynasty, and as such is successful enough as it is.

It was fun to see Daniela Ruah not wrestling people to the ground, or shooting them, even if her first dress was rather ghastly. Although, where was Kensi when ‘our’ SuRie was attacked? A good wrestling to the floor would have been useful.

And Graham Norton is tiresomely not Terry Wogan.

A very long time ago

I was at the dentist’s yesterday morning, and managed to pay some attention to what was on the radio, while also being crowned and glued and whatnot.

They were looking back on the long career of Terry Wogan. Radio Two, not the dentist. So there were snippets from Eurovision, with a pretty hilarious voting commentary between Norway and Sweden.

And then Terry was heard to reminisce on the big changes to Eurovision after ABBA won in 1974. They played Waterloo, and while I didn’t quite lie there singing along, it was still fun.

The dentist asked me if I could remember this. I said that yes, of course, I could. I didn’t tell him exactly where I was or what I was doing, but I do remember. I wasn’t an ABBA fan in those days. (My dentist, who is a very lovely dentist, won’t have been born then.)

And the next thing he asked was whether the members of ABBA were well known in Sweden before Waterloo. I said they were, but didn’t dare point out I’d been a fan of BB almost ten years earlier. And more recently one of the As. He’s very good with general knowledge stuff and irrelevant facts, and can manage a long conversation on exoplanets if he has to. But clearly not ancient ABBA facts.

You had to have been there.

Terry Wogan

There was just one thing I wondered about in 1982. Who’s Terry Wogan? His name was everywhere, and that was without me even ‘looking.’

As is always the case when everyone seems to know something that you don’t, you sort of hesitate to ask. In case it makes you look stupid. So I didn’t ask about this Terry Wogan, but as chance would have it, when the Resident IT Consultant departed for his early train to London every morning, I switched the radio to Radio Two, and after a while I discovered that I was listening to Terry most mornings.

It was very nice, rather like having a kind and intelligent friend come round. This was in the days when there wasn’t so much entertainment available; we had no television, for example. And obviously none of the timewasting things we all enjoy today.

There was just Terry. And to me he was such a radio person, that when we eventually had a television and he was on it, I felt it wasn’t quite right. I did come to expect him for Eurovision and Children in Need, but radio is where Terry belonged.

And now he’s gone.


that would be us, then. Euphoric over win. Sort of.

I don’t often think of the Finns as being terribly amusing. This one was. And it doesn’t matter if he wakes up tomorrow wondering what on earth he said, because none of us know for sure who he was. Masks are good, occasionally. Even the Swedes had a person reporting on the votes who could actually speak English. People seem to have caught on, realising the importance of not making fools of themselves, language wise.

The UK thought they were finally taking this song contest seriously enough. But they didn’t. Look at what everyone else does! Even the Russian grannies were better than Engelbert. And it goes without saying that we want Wogan back. Now. Or at the very least, next year.

The Swedish song wasn’t too bad. And let’s hope they can avoid the exam season for next year’s contest.

Eurovision Song Contest 2011

Eric Saade, Sweden

Don’t get all excited. I have nothing terribly deep to say about this. Poor Daughter ‘had to’ attend a friend’s 18th birthday, but left early to watch on the box, two hours behind everyone else. It felt slightly weird to sit down to listen to the songs when most of the world was almost at the nul points point.

Can’t say there was much to get excited about this year. Didn’t think much of the Swedish song when I first heard it in February, but it was surprisingly good compared to many. Would like to know what that Graham Norton meant when he said we’d smile (or was it laugh?) when Jedward came on. We hoped for the best, but found nothing to smile about. The fact they didn’t win was a relief, but he won’t have known about that.

Graham’s commentary was enough to make you wish Terry Wogan would return from the dead. What’s that? He’s not dead? In that case, what’s he doing not being on the programme?

They all seemed to sing standing or generally cavorting on some kind of weird, large plastic button. Some songs were better than others. I have reached the stage where I don’t keep track of songs, so can’t say if there was one I preferred. Not Azerbaijan, that’s for certain.

Whereas it’s good that performers are now more fully dressed than they used to be, to wear your trousers down at knee level is so not an attractive look. Just saying.

The good thing with watching a recording was that even Daughter got too tired to stay up until the bitter end. I was fascinated by Twitter and Facebook, as everybody were all so far ahead. When Daughter asked did I know who’d won, I said yes, and she said to tell her and that way she could go to bed.

This shortened the night by at least 90 minutes.

The other thing about Twitter was surprise at who actually watches, and that they don’t mind admitting it. And I speak as someone who doesn’t think Eurovision is a joke.


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Pudsey has a girlfriend! I’m shocked. But she looked sweet, so might be good for our charitable bear. Terry Wogan seemed to have two. Lady presenters. Maybe they weren’t up to the seven hour slog? Neither was I, but that’s beside the point. Tess Daly’s outfit for the Strictly Come Dancing thing looked a little too much like a Sainsbury’s carrier bag for my liking.

But what do I know? I gathered that the woman who had hair which matched her dress was the famous Cheryl Cole. And I reckon that if I had ever watched the soaps properly I’d have enjoyed – not to mention understood – East Street so much more. It was reasonably fun even while not quite getting the hang of who was out of place and where. The boasting about whose husband was the most murderous was amusing enough.

The clothes were among the more fun points for Children In Need. Alexandra Burke – who’s totally new to me – sang well, but had come out in her underwear. The ever sweet Wogan claimed his underwear was on fire, but it might not have been such pretty underwear. Daughter gasped when she saw airborne-knicker-recipient Tom Jones’s hair. Has she never seen a grey-haired sex bomb before?

I am so tempted to describe John Barrowman’s spotty suit in Swedish, but I daren’t in case Daughter disowns me totally. It’s for sale, apparently, and one hopes it’s unwashed. Well, not me personally, but you know. She, Daughter, used the Take That song for a comfort break. It was the one thing on the programme she felt she could do without. I can’t help but feel that Take That could do without that ‘new’ singer of theirs.

Listening to A Perfect Day as sung by Susan Boyle, however, I received a report of goosebumps, and I have to admit that it was pretty good, and those angelic choir boys were really very angelic. Bet that Susan didn’t foresee a few years ago that she’d be kissed by Wogan on live television.

Children in Need 2010 - Strictly Come Dancing

Our McFly fan, Miss Vet, is about to receive the McFly snippets from last night, as Daughter had the foresight to hit the record button at the right moment. She also didn’t have the foresight to ignore my suggestion she stop it, which was unfortunate. But most of the McFly shenanigans should be there. I can’t say I think much of their music, but the drummer who danced was rather nice looking. I’m assuming he drew the short straw. And I loved the grumpy judge.

The interval of CIN Mastermind was a masterstroke of genius. So was having three contestants who knew and cared about their specialist subjects as opposed to Tony Hawks who knows nothing about fridges other than how to cart one round Ireland. He must have thought, or been made to think, that it was not serious. Lovely to see John Humphrys has a sense of humour.

Children in Need - Doctor Who

Next time the clever-clogs at the BBC do tea for young children, in need or otherwise, they should offer Ribena. Not cloudy lemonade. It looked delicious, and that’s exactly what it shouldn’t do. The treat of tea with Amy and the Doctor left the poor brothers eating dry biscuits.

We (Daughter and I) already know that Matt Smith can’t catch a train and talk on his mobile, so no surprise that he doesn’t know the difference between a teapot and a kettle. Just remind me never to ask him to make tea for me. (On second thoughts, I’ll have the cloudy lemonade.) But it’s his ineptness that we love.

Speaking of kettles, we refuelled mid-show with some Kettle crisps. Ridged spicy chilli. Very nice.

They should have known

On the basis of hearing only the quick run-through of the Eurovision contestants, I quite liked Norway’s entry. I didn’t waste all evening on this event by watching every minute. But that doesn’t mean I don’t take it seriously. After all, I’m not British.

If and when Britain can be serious about Eurovision, they will most likely do well, or at least better, again. Winning is not a God-given right. And I feel that Terry Wogan took being rude about Eurovision a little more seriously than Graham Norton did. He didn’t even seem to twig when the FYR Macedonian vote lady spoke pretty good Australian. Did anyone notice that the male Norwegian presenter could also speak Icelandic? Or the excellence of the Greek vote person’s Norwegian? It’s such a happy multi-language talent event!

And does anyone sit around making snide remarks on live television quite like the British commentator? Not even sure he’s aware of any old history between the host country and the winning country, but never mind that, eh?

Very pleased for the German winner. Maybe they should have warned contestants that if they win, they need to sing their blasted song again. As did Spain. Didn’t think much of the clowns.

Although watching the whole thing (well, not the whole thing as I said earlier, but all that I did watch) in Sweden, I watched the BBC version. For technical reasons. Son’s English Uppsala neighbour had gone off to Norway to watch it live. Good for him.

How many of you spotted the Norwegian Crown Princess and her children cavorting around, while the cameras panned all over the world, showing us people who were having a good time?

We agreed at the end that we like the Eurovision tune the best, and you don’t hear it nearly enough in the UK.

Children in Need

Unless I go away, it’s always hard to avoid Children in Need. Someone in this house likes watching, and once you start, it’s not all that easy to stop. I arrived in time for the slot with Doctor Who, only to find myself sitting through the whole Terry Wogan dancing thing. The witch does not dance, so admires a man who dares to do so in front of millions.

Terry Wogan Children in Need

At least I now know who Terry is. The great handicap arriving to live in this country, was that it appeared one was supposed to know him. And when you don’t know, you worry about asking, in case it’s the wrong thing to ask. Anyway, I know now. And I love him.

Doctor Who was not on time, but we have to put up with these little annoyances. It looked like a Christmassy kind of Christmas episode, and more than one sonic screw driver is always handy. Not too long to wait, now.

And it was almost worth waiting for the newsreaders. They looked pretty fetching in their Mamma Mia! costumes, but I always wonder how they feel the next day when they are reading serious news again.

Last night of the proms 2008

Do you have any idea of how popular the last night of the proms is abroad? It’s rather like the Famous Five. Any uncomfortable connotations disappear and you see only something wonderfully charming and eccentrically English. That must be why my friend Pippi has gone to Glasgow from her native Gothenburg for the third year running, to attend the Glasgow prom in the park. I think she has missed the finer differences between Scotland and England, but never mind.

Bryn Terfel proms 2008

We spent Saturday night channel hopping between the different parks, but failed to see Pippi and her friend on Glasgow Green. With so many concerts to choose from, it was hard to decide which one to pick, but I managed to catch José Carreras a couple of times in Hyde Park, and I love Terry Wogan at all times. Worried I’d miss Bryn Terfel in the Albert Hall, but got to hear most of his singing, too. (Pippi reports that Bryn is coming to Gothenburg soon, but will NOT pay 990 kronor to hear him sing. Maybe if he wears the fetching little number from the Albert Hall, that made Daughter gasp in horror?)

The Glasgow conductor Robert Ziegler sported what looked like a cross between a cactus and a spider in his button hole, which at least is different from the pink carnations (?) in London. The witch couldn’t help but notice that her primary school’s teaching of God Save The Queen is still intact, unlike that of Offsprings’ school which never taught it in the first place. And luckily Sir Roger Norrington didn’t fall over those pink ribbons swirling about on the stage. But why was he wearing a chef’s jacket?