Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Sharpening a pencil

About 1975 Robin bought himself a rather expensive video tape recorder. This was before the days of Beta and VHS; it was reel to reel, bulky, black and white and, frankly, crap. But he was very proud of it because he was the only one of our gang who owned his own VCR - the rest of us had to make do with government funded communal property at the video centre.

Heino's been on my back for a while now to write about Turtle Video and I really do want to but it's not easy to start without driving away those few loyal readers I have. So I'm going to ease into the subject over the next couple of months. It was a big part of both our lives in the second half of the 1970's so consider this fair warning! :)

Anyway, Robin was magnanimous in the extreme by lugging this bulky and not very good video recorder around. We had Sony Portapaks that were just as good, half the weight and a quarter the size but we were happy to have yet another VCR at our disposal. Well, we did for a while. But suddenly the recorder started losing resolution at an alarming rate and it was hard on our tapes. Much scratching of heads without any solution coming to hand.

Until one night, over a bottle of Brandavino (a vile alcoholic drink that cost 2 bucks a bottle and was worth a quarter of that) the truth came out. Dave was sharpening his pencils by holding them against the video head as it span.

What a bastard!

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