What a week for very odd news! I remember well from years in newspapers how journalists struggle at times to find a story - any story - that might make the front page.
|Whale of a tale, in English ... orcas in the Marineland of Antibes, the world's largest killer whale complex. The critters swim in eleven million gallons of water, with a panoramic glass wall 64 metres long. Marineland has four orcas: Inouk, Wikie, Moana and Keijo. Photo by Robert Pittman - NOAA (http://www.afsc.noaa.gov/Quarterly/amj2005/divrptsNMML3.htm]), Public Domain, Antibes whales|
For years, the cry has been China's unfair flooding of markets with goods that are so much cheaper than capitalism seems able to produce.
Now, suddenly it seems, we want more Chinese goods here, and, oh, more of our goods on the shelves over there.
Brexit seems constantly slotted into news broadcasts, to be followed the next day by apparent contradictions in the great Conservative mystery.
We even have our dear lady leader breaking away from Chinese clinches to add to the Brexit muddle.
Oh, and here's another odd news variation. For the first time, I read and hear that the lady's dutiful husband is along for the Chinese junket. There he is in prominent news columns, and we can be sure it will be for a specific reason. What it is, I fear to guess, but in a news hungry week, there are many possibilities. Watch this space.
There's an old journalistic standby. When humans aren't creating real news, bring in the animals.
Killer whales? Tut tut ...
And what could be more gripping for Radio 4 listeners than to enjoy the sounds of whales at play? Yep, a news hungry week indeed.
However, there's a possibility here, too, of a bit of propaganda sneaking in. The creatures from a French marineland 'speak' English! Oh, forget, please, that these are killer whales, very nasty assassins of the oceans, destroying gentle, non-rampaging whales, and dolphins with appalling cruelty.
In the news, they are are given the sweet noun of orcas.
The French know who voted in droves to leave the EU, so the whales are not learning to talk with Cockney, Estuary English, nor with strange Broomie, Geordie, nor Scouse dialects.
The oceans killers - er, orcas - are learning middle class, educated Received Pronunciation, albeit - unavoidably, presumably - with a slight French accent. No, Brexiteers, these sweet critters!
Thanks very much for visiting the blogs for my adventure book, Sailing to Purgatory.