Monday, 31 July 2017

A legend from the West

The late Mick Melvin, founder of Kairos Communications, taught me probably everything I know about the comma, the apostrophe, syntax, crediting, definition, synonym, antonym, homonym, copyright, plagiarism, lots of other isms – how to spell –the difference between truth and opinion – a distaste for exaggeration, an abhorrence of the exclamation mark - And – the importance of consulting both the Oxford and Chambers dictionary.

I fear, in the many years since I worked with Mick, I have indulged in much exaggeration, exclaimed a lot, been unfaithful to the comma and have come to rely heavily on spellcheck rather than consult the great dusty dictionaries.  Mick taught me how to edit, and to re-edit my edits.  He taught me how to cut out the crap before the copy was typeset.  This was vitally important back then - because cutting and pasting was scalpel and glue, deadlines were met by staying up all night over a lightbox, and last-minute corrections had to be invisibly glued-over by corrections of identical length.

Mick also taught me how to make videos. Back in the day when the equipment necessary to film filled a Highace van and an editing suite looked like it could put a man on the moon. Mick LOVED equipment. No sooner would one get the hang of one unwieldy piece of kit than another more complex gizmo would appear.  I have tried to stay true to everything he taught me about publishing – but I didn’t keep up the filming and video making. It would have been a costly hobby and I wasn’t technically adept! (this exclamation is warranted).

I wonder what Mick would have made of the smart phone. ‘Huh,’ I can hear him say.  And after some consideration ‘Huh’ again.  Maybe that’s why I’m so hesitant to embrace all its functions.  But – even if it doesn’t take ‘proper’ photographs, and allows any ‘eejit’ to start broadcasting – ‘it has to be said’ (to quote another broadcasting legend), that it’s great fun.  So…..

Dear Mick,

I am writing to tell you that I have recently made two videos.  The first is of a duration of 14 seconds and deals, rather dramatically I admit, with the undulations of my clothesline. (I have linked it to my previous post). The second (linked below) is of a duration of one minute, and deals with a visit to North Mayo - most specifically to the Céide Fields.  I am working on a third more complex project (which I will post shortly) of a duration of 1.34 minutes.

I hope you are well and that you approve of blogging.  I think you would have enjoyed it.  Indeed it is a great pity this medium was not available to you and we do not have your wisdoms on record.

If you would like to view North Mayo Magic – click HERE. 

Sincerely yours C


  1. Great post. I came in at the tail end of physically cutting and splicing tape... So much skill needed to get it right. And now just a couple of clicks and the same job is done!

  2. Nice post!!! Oops, I mean Nice post.
    About the techology, I wonder if we are less careful now about the first draft/photo/shot because it's so easy to redo.

  3. Oh my god. Clothes drying will never be the same again. I felt like there was a prime time exposé coming up. Fab camera skills.