Clearly this is subjective, personal and non scientific, it doesn’t take into account viewing figures although I suspect many are up there and of course many will have taken place before news went truly global and the interweb thingy gave audiences worldwide the opportunity to show live what would once have been over before the channels turned up. I’m sure others here will have different choices and suggestions but let me make clear right now, the absence of any wendyball is deliberate and not up for discussion. They aren’t in any particular chronological order nor are they ranked as such just the musings of someone with a twitter ban to see out so it might appear a bit random unless it gets edited to make more sense later.
I suppose it makes sense to state that i was born in 1961, there’s not much for the first few years and to be honest I don’t really recall if we even had a TV at the time or when we first got one, I do remember seeing a colour TV for the first time around the late 60s at the house of a school mate whose dad was a flash git who had a big engined mark 1 Capri so I’m guessing 1969. Which brings me to the first of my choices, although it was shown at primary school the day after it occurred and that is the first landing on the moon.
This is the shortest clip I could find but it started a lifelong love of space and flight generally which still continues today.
Next up, as I say these aren’t in any chronological order, has to be the rescue of the Chilean miners, human endurance, horror, (i don’t mind admitting I am quite claustrophobic), technology and the whole world seemingly rooting for what at first seemed an impossible task.
Now to the sporting arena and wendyball aside there are many that spring to mind, Botham’s ashes, Daley Thompson winning the decathlon and for the gheyers even Torville and Dean, but for me it has to be rugby, there is Gareth Williams try for the Babas, probably the greatest try ever scored, which would today have seen at least two All Blacks sent off for high tackles, Jeremy Guscotts drop goal for the Lions against south Africa, but of course it has to be Johnny Wilkinson’s last minute of the second period of extra time drop goal to win the world cup in 2003, I admit I thought England had blown it.
Next to comedy, which officially died when the BBC decided that all you needed to do to become a ‘comedian’ on MSM was to say Fatcher and roll your eyes and you’d have a series commissioned. There are the two Ronnies, incidentally if I seem to wander now and again you can change your internal monologue(voices in your head) to read this as if Ronnie Corbett is seated in his oversized armchair delivering this in his unique style; the four candles sketch, or frank Spencer roller skating in ‘Some mothers do ave em’, Monty Python or faulty Towers, but for me it is Only Fools and Horses, which leaves me with the difficult choice of three. The shooting party scene where Del has a pump action shotgun to go clay pigeon shooting, falling through the bar whilst chatting up some posh totty but number one is the chandelier scene.
For breaking news I doubt there can be much dispute that the events of 9/11 are at the top, I remember hearing of the first plane crashing whilst in the pub, an old trad boozer that had no music, no TV,no video games, no fruit machines, nothing just beer, food and conversation, the landlord Clive broke his own rules and went upstairs and fetched down a small portable, set it up in the bar just in time for the second plane to crash into the tower an event that still shapes the world today.
Off to war, thankfully something I’ve never had to experience but I know quite a few of you have so apologies if I don’t feature yours, unfortunately it’s a fact that pretty much every year since the end of the second world war, British servicemen have been involved in ruining some fuckers day somewhere in the world and we salute them for it.
For those who don’t know, CNN, before it became known as the fake news channel, came to fame during the first gulf war when contrary to advice they had reporters remain in Baghdad and transmitted excellent real time coverage of the opening salvos including the first eye witness reports of cruise missiles being fired in anger, But for me and it’s personal because I had friends and former colleagues who served there, it is this.
Next to politics and of course it was the announcement of the 2016 referendum result, what a day to be alive and what a disgraceful turn of events we have witnessed from that day to this. I very much doubt the political class will ever recover from their abject failures since, where it will end I have no idea, there is obviously an air of some despondency at the way things are turning out, but I’m sure we all agree politics changed forever that night.
For natural history I go with the moment in the first life on earth series when David Attenborough met the mountain gorillas in Rwanda, that was of course before the BBC realised it was cheaper to stage footage and have him narrate from a studio in his home and spend the spare cash on minority programs and channels, it amazes me these days why they have channels catering for every part of the world when satellite and the internet can broadcast programs of interest to those groups direct from there.
Now music, Tv music generally leaves me pretty cold I used to enjoy live shows, but not sure I could stomach two hours of watching the back of five thousand fucking I phones being waved in front of me these days so those days are behind me. I remember at the time live aid was on at home, it didn’t do much for me and to be honest I was never Queens greatest fan and still am only an occasional listener, but this did prick up my ears and turned what had hitherto been a pretty dull show of pretentious fuckwits into something worth watching at least for a short time.
Now for the final one and the most personal for me at the time, the height of the IRA campaign in London I was in the Met, I knew one of the officers killed in the Harrods bombing, was in the canteen with John Fordham the morning he was stabbed by Kenneth Noye and fed Yerba a sausage the day he was shot and killed by an armed robber, but it was the Hyde park bombing that I remember most. I saw the footage of the aftermath the day it happened and got a call to go on duty straight away. packed on a coach to central London from sleepy St Mary Cray nick and saw the sun rise the following morning at the scene, you could still smell the explosives, the dead horses were still there lying in pools of blood and flesh but had no idea if it were theirs or one of the soldiers.
So that’s it, my top ten that i recall, some funny, some sad, some incredible to believe actually happened. I’m sure everyone has their own to add.
© Wycombewanderer 2018