Posts Tagged ‘television’

Getting Down With Corrie Street

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

When I moved into my first apartment in Manchester, I discovered I was located down the road from Granada Studios, home to England’s version of Neighbours, Coronation Street. It took me some time to work this out and I would often wonder why large groups of teenage girls were hanging around outside a gate every day. Turns out they were Corrie-Spotting.

Practically Warner Brother Studios

Practically Warner Brother Studios

My next cross with Coronation Street happened while working at Artisan. Frequently stars of the show would come in for a meal and be served by an Australian who was completely oblivious of their fame and possible fortune. It wasn’t until a manager or fellow staff member would say, “Jess! You have the Corrie table!” and they had explained to me what exactly they meant that I discovered I was delivering food to someone of GCI (Great Cultural Importance.)

I have since shifted to the other side of Granada Studios and Coronation Street has packed up shop and moved to the shiny new ITV studios in Media City. However, for the next few months, ultra fans can go on a tour of the original set and see where Harry met Sally and Sally met Ryan and they had an affair before discovering that Ryan is actually Harry’s long-lost brother (I made that up.) For people like me who just want to see the really cool warehouse building located inside the Granada studios, there are artisan markets being held over the next few weekends inside the studio grounds. I ventured to the markets on both Saturday and Sunday of this last weekend and checked out the wares on sale. It was the usual mix of handmade jewellery, over-exposed photographs of Manchester and homemade cakes. The stall holders were holding on to their tents for dear life as the wind picked up – hopefully the weather improves over the next few weeks.

Great building!

Great building!

I managed to stand next to what I believe is an important Corrie location, although to be honest I have no idea. My new housemate has been trying to introduce me to Coronation Street but my extreme dislike for really bad television/acting means she has a lot of convincing to do.

The local Coronation Street pub

The local Coronation Street pub

Les Jeux Olympiques

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

The Olympic Games snuck up on me – I thought they were going to start much later in August and then suddenly the opening ceremony was happening and athletes were competing. Normally I would watch a fair amount of the games, keenly discovering new sports that I never knew existed and cheering for the Australian competitors. This year, not so much.

I feel completely separated from the Olympics and haven’t sat down and watched any of the sports for the past week. I didn’t see the opening ceremony and I have no idea how many medals Australia has won. I have heard on the grape vine that Australia’s sports media aren’t overly impressed with the efforts of our team and that somehow the French have won more medals than us. Really, I don’t care, but it does surprise me that a country that doesn’t know what sport is, and that thinks me going for a jog in the morning is equivalent to running a marathon every day, is beating one of the world’s ‘top sporting nations’.

I have turned on the television to see what was happening in the Games once or twice, and have been warmly welcomed by the French equivalent of Johanna Griggs – a man with very large glasses and particularly impressive hair.

Olympics commentator

If hair was a sport, he’d win the gold.

He is very entertaining, purely for his eyebrows which even stand out behind his huge glasses. Also, when I would normally be transported from event to event following the Australian competitors, I am now kept up to date with how the French are doing. From what I have been hearing from the Australian media, the French commentators are much prouder of their team and will exaggerate and praise the skills and talents of their competitors, even if they come last. I like this. The Olympics are so serious these days and the amount of pressure that is placed on the athletes is ridiculous. I thought sport was supposed to be fun.

Olympic screen at Hotel de Ville

A giant screen has been set up outside the Hotel de Ville for everyone to watch the Olympics

Nerd Attack

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

Yesterday afternoon I unwillingly witnessed one of the strangest phenomenons that I have seen in quite some time. Having travelled the world and experienced many different cultures, I am very accepting of new and different ways of living, eating and being. However, yesterday I met a friend of mine at the Broadway Basement tavern for a catch up drink and found myself in a completely and utterly baffling situation that I didn’t know how to explain or accept.

Imagine this. A girl (me) walks into a bar and discovers that of the 60-odd people drinking there, she is the only female who isn’t a member of staff. This she can accept as it is happy hour and pints are $6, however it isn’t until she sits down and notices a very large screen that she sees something is different. Expecting to see a football, cricket or rugby game, imagine her surprise/shock/horror when she realises the images being telecast are not your average sporting match but televised coverage of a World of Warcraft style computer game (apparently it is called Starcraft.)

Starcraft

Intense. *Image taken from www.perth.barcraft.tv

I could not believe my eyes – the room steadily filled with boys (they ranged in age from 18 to 25ish but would definitely still be categorised as boys, not men) wearing Nintendo or Mortal Combat tshirts who grabbed pints of beer and a seat and placed themselves in the best possible location to sit and watch two players compete for computerised victory. What really threw me was that there were commentators on the screen providing us with the latest statistics on who had won that battle and who had managed to steal the other person’s camp. To be honest, I don’t really know what happens in Starcraft and I don’t really care, but it seemed that the entire Computer Science faculty from UWA was there watching the action.

I would put this experience in the same bucket as when I had to watch Tom perform at heavy metal concerts when he was in a band. The long-haired, black-clothed metal heads had a similar nerdish quality to pimply, glasses-wearing Starcrafters. While they are hardly a threatening bunch, I can’t say I felt like I blended in. But for those of you who are currently jumping out of your seats at the exciting combination of beer + computer games, head to the Basement on Broadway in Nedlands every Tuesday at 5pm.

Starcraft schedule

Don't miss the action!

Nuts in New York

Saturday, September 24th, 2011

So I went to New York. WOW. What a place. I had been there once before when I was travelling on my own in 2007. Being there with someone else is a much better experience as it makes going out at night easier, plus it is such an insane place that you need to have someone around to say “WHAT ON EARTH WAS THAT?!” to.

My favourite day in New York was my birthday (surprise, surprise.) I woke up to a beautiful, sunny day and the sounds of taxi horns and general yelling on the street. Ahh… bliss. I had decided I would have my birthday morning tea at Baby Cakes (you can’t not eat cake on your birthday morning. It would just be wrong.) Baby Cakes is home to handmade cupcakes that are either gluten free or made with spelt flour. I had a chocolate spelt cupcake which started my realisation that I don’t actually like cupcakes. They are generally too dry and flavourless and covered in a huge lump of over-sweetened icing. My Baby Cakes cupcake was the best cupcake I ate in New York as it wasn’t too sweet (they don’t use sugar in their cooking) and it was a nice little bakery. I don’t think I’d have another one in a rush.

BabyCake Cupcake

Tom put a candle in my cupcake!

Post-cake we needed to go for a walk so I took us on the Flight of the Conchords walking tour which goes past all of the main sites of Bret and Jermaine’s world. It was awesome seeing all of the places in the tv show – the highlight was the New Zealand embassy building. I didn’t see Murray.

Flight of the Conchords

Bret and Jermaine live here!

Flight of the Conchords New Zealand Embassy

It's the New Zealand Embassy!

We had lunch at a nice little café near where we were staying before heading to MoMA – my favourite art gallery in the world. Big call. But so far it’s true. It is so wonderful to be surrounded by amazing art works from such great artists. I think I saw a famous actor but I’m not sure who she is. But still. Fame.

MoMA

Oh MoMA, I love you.

The afternoon involved a bit of shopping (for Tom) and then drinks and dinner. Tom took me to a great restaurant called Little Giant where we ate delicious food. See?

Trout

A whole baked trout

ice cream

Bananas with salted butter caramel ice cream for dessert

So that was my birthday. It was a great day. Now I am going to play table tennis. I’ll write more later.

France is Moving Forward

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

In approximately two and a half hours, France will have changed. It will have grown. It will be something completely new and different. It will have a new level of digital television – TNT (Télévision Numérique Terrestre). That’s right – great things are upon us. And all of France is talking about it. Stay tuned, kids. Who knows what new channels this revolution in television will bring.

Bear Grylls

I hope Bear stays on the screen, although he sounds a lot less convincing in French

La Television!

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Exciting times in the Chateau. Today Tom rode the metro all by himself (like a big boy) and went in search of a device to make tv work on our laptops. AND IT WORKS! We now have French tv in our apartment which means we’ll be able to watch sleazy game show hosts and short-skirted weather girls! Very excitement.