Christmas Letter 2012


Seasons Greetings, Letter Recipients!

So here we are again, me writing a needlessly rambling and (allegedly) amusing recap of the year along with seasonal well-wishes in place of sending Christmas Cards; and you, [Your Name Here], rolling your eyes/skimming through it briefly/hunting out any fodder it provides to respond mockingly (Delete as Appropriate).

As you can see, the letter is mildly customisable this year, so…You know…enjoy that, I guess.

2012 sure was intense. I for one was concerned we’d all had it when that plane with John Cusack and Amanda Peet on it was engulfed by the pyroclastic flow from that volcano…

Wait that doesn’t uh…That doesn’t sound right…

That was the movie wasn’t it?


Ummmmm…2012 the year was the one with the South Korean bloke dancing weirdly on YouTube, right?

Well that was pretty good too. And in an added bonus, in the year we all get to live, and not just the people who made it to the comically oversized and suspiciously well-hidden ships like in the movie.

And living was worth it, because we got to see Wiggo, Andy Murray, Jess Ennis, Mo Farah et al make this pretty much the best year ever for British Sport. If you’re from some other country you probably care less about that. I on the other hand thought it was awesome and I am clearly objective (he wrote, shamelessly wearing his Team GB London 2012 Tennis T-Shirt).

But if the very British Olympics is what caught our viewing attention this year, our musical tastes were captivated by some very different styles. There was the aforementioned fit of global insanity, Gangnam Style. To paraphrase a great movie, a million record sales isn’t cool. You know what’s cool?


Oh mankind, your priorities are amazing.

But it wasn’t just crazed Koreans. There was the year’s other ear worm too, the anti-Friday, proving that if 2011 was a year of cynicism then 2012 was going to be about boundless, unashamed joy (perhaps because we were all pretending to believe there was even a tiny chance the world would end in December even though the reality is nobody’s actually that stupid).

Yes, Canadia have finally made up for Bryan Adams (For whom their government has apologised on a number of occasions) with Call Me Maybe. Which seemed perfect fodder for a One Hit Wonder, but then Carly Rae Jepsen did that song with Owl City and we all went “huh, I guess she’s sticking around after all…I’m okay with that.”

Yeah, it was a good year. The Newsroom debuted this year, The Dark Knight Rises AND Avengers Assemble came out over the summer and now we’ve got The Hobbit.

Myself, I turned 21. Which is…Weird. And I also finally made it to Walt Disney World, which is basically like heaven if you’re me, so…Yeah. Good times.

I was a bit worried things might have been taking a turn when the Yellowstone National Park Super Volcano erupted in Woody Harrelson’s face, but it all worked out.


That was the movie again, wasn’t it?


Never mind then.

So anyway, here’s to a great year, the year that was (and – for a little while longer, I suppose – still is) Twenty Twelve. I had a blast, so hopefully you did too.

Looking ahead to the new hotness of 2013, I have to go find an actual job using my training in TV Production and my particular skill in drawing attention to myself when in front of a camera.

…Oh boy, 2013 is going to be tricky, huh?

Eep. Well, anyway, to you my family/valued friend/casual acquaintance/random person reading this by mistake (Delete as Appropriate), I wish a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

And, in the interests of multiculturalism, Feliz Navidad.

Hah, you thought I was gonna say something politically correct like “Happy Holidays” or “Have a Happy Hanukkah; Kwazy Kwanza; Solemn, Dignified Ramadan etc.” or something like that didn’t you? Well I didn’t, instead I worked in a way to shamelessly add that I started learning Spanish this year for no adequately explored reason.

…And then I wound up saying all those politically correct bits anyway, huh?


Your Pal/Relative/Acquaintance/Fellow Human Being – whether you like it or not (Delete as Appropriate)
Paul Douglas

I leave you with these very important parting words:
¡Por favor, manténgase alejado de las puertas!

TVBRO Week 12 10/12/12-16/12/12

This week was relatively quiet since it was the last week of term. With a few things weighing on my mind though, I arranged a meeting with Charlie Watts, our Course Leader.

The main thing I wanted to discuss what was going to happen throughout the rest of the academic year, and my desire for more opportunities to get in front of the camera and gain experience as a presenter. In particular, we discussed the fact that I was hoping to get another opportunity to present a chat show – as I did in First Year with the Portsmouth facts-themed Reputable (which you can watch here); mainly because presenting a chat show is my ultimate ambition and I want to get experience in doing it. Partly, to refine my skills, but also to help showcase my natural affinity for the role of chat show host.

Charlie suggested that this could be the group’s Commissioned Show if the others in the group were happy with the idea, so I proposed the idea to the group at large that we make our Commissioned Show a chat show hosted by me. To my delight, the others were very enthusiastic about the idea, so we formally notified Charlie that we plan to go ahead with it.

And so, I go into the new calendar year with the knowledge that we will be producing my chat show. I’m incredibly excited to get started!

TVBRO Week 11 3/12/12-9/12/12

It was a quiet week on the TVBRO front this week, as we only met once to have a brief discussion about our commissioned show, which we had not had time to think about in the run up to our second CCi Live episode owing to how much we had to get done for that show. Other than our earlier decision to use Alex as Producer, we hadn’t really decided anything about the commissioned show up to this week.

And to some extent, we still haven’t. Although we talked quite a bit about the two ideas we had last time (Either a cooking themed show, or a talent competition of some kind) there isn’t a particularly large amount of enthusiasm in the group for either one. This causes me to wonder if we shouldn’t be looking at doing something which we are more personally invested in.

This, after all, is a rare opportunity to produce a show that is uniquely ours in conception and execution. It should be something we’re enthusiastic about and enjoy doing.

No decision has been made as yet, but it sounds like we need to have an idea soon. At any rate, the show is the third week after the Christmas Break so we will need to know what we are doing by then anyway if we’re going to be able to pull it all together.

TVBRO Week 10 26/11/12-2/12/12

Well after the emotional roller coaster ride of last week, this week was, by any metric, much smoother. With no further shows of our own to produce before the Christmas break, we only needed to get together this week to rehearse Orange Group’s show, and then crew it when it went live. This gave us all a good few days to de-stress and recharge after the dramas of producing our own second episode.

I was particularly glad of this opportunity to rest, as I take what we do incredibly seriously and very personally. It breaks my heart if something is not good and I almost can’t bear it when something doesn’t come together at all. So when things stared blowing up last week I was really unhappy about it, and I felt like it was personally my responsibility as the producer to fix it. More than that, I felt extremely disappointed in myself if it went wrong and I wasn’t able to fix it, even if the initial problem had nothing to do with me.

A lot of this may seem melodramatic, and in some ways it is. I recognise, having been able to switch off for a little while that it’s important to try and stop these problems from getting to you. I think being caught up in the drama with so much going on in such a short space of time really prevented me from being able to take a minute to just move past the stress. Fortunately, having made it through, I feel like in future I will be better equipped to handle such situations emotionally. To some extent, it was like a baptism of fire, and now I’m aware of what I’m up against if things do go poorly, I hope to be better able to confront those problems.

In terms of this week’s show, it was a fairly painless operation. I chose to remain in my Autocue Operator role, and most of the other group members opted not to change as well. As a result, we were quickly up to speed on what needed to be done and just had to learn the specific material Orange Group had for us. After the rehearsal, we identified a few areas where they needed to make some changes. We practiced those changes in a couple of run-throughs on Friday morning and they helped quite a bit. And so we went to air and put on a pretty good show, which you can see below.