Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Bending the Rules of Time and Space

An interesting little diversion at work - which was sparked by sending an old (1996 vintage!) BBC Drama website to Martin Currybet.

-----Original Message-----
From: Martin
Wow - that's fantastic.

My favourite bit - only in the BBC could we have "The programmes in this archive are listed by production year. A production year runs from April through to March the following year".

So as well as inventing 25 and 26 o'clock for the late night schedules, our years are not in synch with the rest of the Western world. Genius

So - the BBC breaks the rules of Time. But the 25 and 26 o'clock reminded me of something I once heard joked about - the BBC foot. Not content with changing the clock, there was an officially sanctioned way of measuring space, too. So, in an effort to amuse Martin, I went and checked with my trusty oldskool BBC source...
Kim Plowright says:
Anyhow - reason for sudden contact - a query - 'The BBC Foot' - as used in studios - is this a myth/joke, or real? - remember you and Geoffrey joking about it once.
Jane says:
no, not a joke, does exist or rather did exist - 300mm pourquoi?
Kim Plowright says:
I wanted to check to tell a friend about it; it will amuse him greatly.
Jane says:
In the old BBC rehearsal rooms @ N Acton the floor tiles were made to those dimensions and are probably still in place, pm on fawlty towers never used a tape to mark up, just the tiles and his size 10's
The BBC: we bend both time and space to our will. Mwa-ha-ha-ha, etc.

1 comment:

ThereFromHere said...

This reminds me of a friend's travel tale. On on what turned out to be the 4th day of a Zambian public holiday, he was waiting for a bus to leave when he saw the following sign:

"To our esteemed customers, please note that Sundays and public holidays being slow days, We Do Not Observe Time"

I had thought that the ability to ignore an entire dimension was a purely Zambian achievement, but obviously the BBC is getting there as well...

http://www.world-traveller.org/travel/zambia-malawi/account/13.htm

therefromhere, aka ZeroGravitas.