Relics 1: Editing Kit

If you bother with me on twitter, you’ll know that at the beginning of the year I cleared out my attic. It was a long and painful experience which confronted me with my hoarding ways.

Determined to hoard no longer, I gave away or recycled most of the newspapers, magazines and bric-a-brac which had been bowing the joists of the top of our house for so long and posing a fire hazard.

But I didn’t want to forget those objects which I’d obviously bothered to store so lovingly for so long. Some I kept but many others I simply photographed before getting rid of them.

All of which is a long way to introducing the idea I had of putting up these pictures with a bit of memory attached to them. Knowing how often I fail to find time for this blog, this project could take a long time. Here’s Relic number 1, my editing kit:

My radio editing kit. Splicing block, tape and chinagraph pencils.

This used to be of vital importance to me and holding onto bits of it were crucial as you can tell from the way I wrote my name onto the tape to deter light-fingered newsroom colleagues.

It seems incredible to me now that we recorded our interviews on cassette or tape and then edited clips by marking them manually with the chinagraph, slicing bits of the tape and sticking them together. It sounds like the days of Richard Dimbleby even though it was only the 1990s.

Even though I still enjoy listening to vinyl and reading actual books, I’ve never once missed tape or editing it. It was a pain in the neck. Literally sometimes. I once was editing a complicated item and had looped all the clips around my neck like a garland of tape. Of course they all slid off onto the floor which meant I then had to stick them all back together in any order and painstakingly separate them out again.

This editing kit in a tin pencil case is one relic I’ve kept.

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