Tag Archives: sitcoms

Comfrey Cuttings? Cut!

Image result for comfrey open source images

I just discovered this post lurking in the drafts folder: I wrote it a week ago and thought I’d published it, but not so.

I’ve got a bit carried away with gardening this week, and while the two lavender cuttings were settling into their pot, I looked up methods of propagating comfrey.  Mark used to joke about this herb, ‘it doesn’t come free, you know,’ but actually – it does.  Not only that, if it’s in a place where you don’t want it, it’s very hard to get rid of.  But I wanted to take some from between the cracks in the front garden and transport it to the back – to which end, I did some research – and, surprise, surprise, you can’t take cuttings.  I more or less knew this, but whereas the recommended method is to divide the plants and transplant one half, the only comfrey plants available to me have wedged themselves so tightly between paving-slabs that it is impossible to get any garden implement in there.

But all was not lost.  As I wrote ‘comfrey cuttings’ on my notepad, a small twinge occurred in my brain.  It reminded me of something.  Some poking around revealed this to be an abortive follow-up to Dad’s Army called Parsley Sidings.


And all of this set me thinking about sequels to sitcoms.  Ones which failed include Joey, the unsuccessful follow-up to Friends; Going Straight, the much less exciting spin-off from Porridge, and one which only I seem to remember, Constant Hot Water, which featured Pat Phoenix (Elsie Tanner of Coronation St) as a B&B landlady.  I didn’t know, however, that there had been a sequel to M*A*S*H called Aftermash, but so it was.

However not all spin-offs are doomed to oblivion.  Some do even better than their progenitors.  Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads? is widely considered to be better than the original, and Frasier is far superior to Cheers.

None of which gets me any further with the comfrey.  I did attempt to dig up a couple of roots, but they both perished.

And this post has gone all squashed.  Maybe that’s what happens if they don’t see the light of day…

Kirk out





Filed under friends and family, herbalism

One Richard Up, One Down…

So farewell then… Richard.  Yes, Richard Briers, aka ‘The Actor in the Car-park’, has died aged 579.  Known for his roles in The Good Battle of Bosworth and Ever-Decreasing Plantagenets, this much-loved actor’s reputation suffered after he played roles in Shakespeare where his deformities were exaggerated and he was only allowed to portray villains.  This was in marked contrast to his role in Real Life where he was well-liked, playing opposite such great women as Queen Margaret (‘Margot’) Leadbetter.

Richard Briers III was killed by a blow in the head from a tractor whilst out digging in Bosworth Field, although for years he had suffered from curvature of the spine due to walking in Ever-Decreasing Circles.

Oh, all right then… Richard Briers is dead.  This is very sad, though probably not unexpected as he was 79: he seems to have as well-liked in person as he was loved in his acting roles, the best-known of which were characters he himself disliked.  He found Tom Good unbearable and Martin Bryce (of ‘Ever-Decreasing Circles’) “a man of giant insecurity”, but was able nonetheless to make them sympathetic.  The Close, featured in the latter sitcom, could be a prototype of Harry Potter’s Little Whinging – and, though The Good Life was funnier in many ways, I found EDC more intelligent in the way it got inside the characters.  Another feature of the programme which I liked was what I called ‘Howard-and-Hilda jumpers’: each week Martin and Ann’s neighbours (and friends) would appear sporting a different set of matching knitwear.  There’s a classic example in this clip – about 3 minutes in:


I love the attention to detail in this series – the way Martin always turns the phone round when he comes in the house; the way Briers got his walk and mannerisms exactly so.  Briers also did a lot of voice-over work as he had an inimitable and highly individual voice: breathy but with a note of urgency and insistence; a voice that said; ‘You can be comfortable with me but I’m not a will-o’the-wisp.  He will be much missed.

Another blast from the past – we actually watched Coronation Street last night with Holly.  Amazingly, Ken Barlow and Gail thingy are still in it!  Take a look:


And that was yesterday.

Kirk out

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Filed under philosophy, TV reviews