Well, she's all over for another year

Frank Avis by | January 6, 2020 | 2010s

Well, she's all over for another year and the Alan and Ray Show ended the ratings, owning Sydney's overalls...
Well, she's all over for another year and the Alan and Ray Show ended the ratings, owning Sydney's overalls, clear of FM challengers, Smooth and Kiis. Good old CH bounced up nearly a point and says goodbye to 2019, rating just under 4.5. I was surprised to hear that Ch. 9 had decided to switch ex-MIX colleague Deborah Knight on to 2GB after the end of her contract with the TODAY show. I'm not sure how often we'll get to see her now on Ch. 9 6 O'Clock news but as she just happens to be one of the top 3 TV news presenters in the nation let's hope she continues her regular work in this high-profile arena. I guess if you are going to radio it's nice to be heading off to the city's No. 1.

The attached photo is courtesy of TV veteran, Bill Lee, aka Unka (for Uncle) or Mr Grumps (er, don't go there) and shows a stack of survivors from TVT 6, HOBART in a recent reunion shot.


I joined TVT/7HO in the late '50s which is where I met up with Bill. I did quite a few booth shifts, read a bit of news and actually pioneered the first IN HOBART TONIGHT with Tom Warne, Graeme Smith and Bill as Director. I think we all have affectionate memories of those early days.

Sadly I really don't remember a lot of people in this photo -- my fault, not theirs -- but I do recall several colleagues -- Tony Kingston, Tony Kendrick, Lyndon Michell, Jan Gough, Stan Draper and Winston Henry. I salute you all.

Yes, I was wired on to the lounge during the recent British Brexit Election. I think I spent up to 8 hours on Sky News UK following the astonishing drama as BoJo wiped out Jeremy and his bizarre manifesto which promised everything to everybody while he went after business and the wealthy with a political cosh. Oh yes, and then we had the spectre of nationalisation and his "should we... shouldn't we... oh don't look at me, I haven't got a clue" policy for Brexit. It was a disaster for Labour as its old heartland cried "enough! I'm getting outta here". And boy, they did.

The whole Brexit saga was incredible really as I've argued for years. We even had one major party campaigning openly on the basis of refusing to accept the recent Brexit vote, and telling The Brits they'd have to vote again, presumably until they voted to stay IN the European Union. These people actually refused to accept a national plebiscite which voted to leave. I don't get that. Needless to say, that party did not have a good night at the ballot boxes. These remainers had spent every day since the nationwide vote moaning about the decision. Commentator JANET ALBRECHTSEN -- writing in the Weekend Australian -- labelled them the "remoaners"...

We had one of those iconic moments you hang on to this week when we saw a Willie Wagtail in our yard. Haven't seen one for ages. Haven't seen any Blue Wrens, Swallows or sparrows either. They've all been hunted out of our suburbs by a combination of aggressive imported species and marauding cats allowed to roam and hunt through the night. Maybe, the return of the Wagtail marks a new era... We might even get to see the occasional Kookaburra?

If you want to know what happens when Big Business falls into the hands of bureaucrats here is an alarming story. A young High School student turned up for his casual shift at a local Supermarket... Won't go into names but this is one of the biggest names in the country... and he saw a lady looking a bit lost. So he approached the customer and was able to direct her to the appropriate aisle. The two had a brief chat and the happy customer departed feeling a lot better for the experience of talking face-to-face with a human. Shortly afterwards the young worker was pulled aside by his supervisor, who was clearly irate. "What are you doing?" she demanded to know. "You broke one of our main protocols. You never INITIATE contact with a customer: you respond to any questions and move on as quickly as possible. Oh yes, and your exchange with that lady lasted longer than one minute... also breaking another one of our key customer protocols". The worker stood there for a while and then looked the Supervisor in the eye, responding... "You've got to be kidding me?" To this she replied angrily... "One more outburst like that and you'll be facing the Manager on a charge of insubordination". I think that might be from episode 3 of Faulty Towers... No hang on... I've just found it on page 10 of Jeremy Corbyn's Manifesto.

You all know of my unrelenting search for a decent crime drama on TV. Well, I recently rediscovered the original "pilot" episode of the British masterpiece Waking the Dead. I'd forgotten how brilliant it was... the script, the direction and the wonderful ensemble cast. A couple of weeks back we sat down to watch a promising detective series from Wales.

Sadly, we could hardly understand anything they said so -- without the aid of sub-titles -- we just had to pull the plug after half an hour and give up. It looked good but we had no idea what the characters were saying. How politically incorrect is that?

Have a good 2020.

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This is the history of radio newsman Frank Avis who worked in the Australian electronic media from 1954 to 1996.


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