An Archivistic Vision: Welcome to the Programme

Earlier this week, coinciding neatly with a just-in-time delivery of memories into the LoL – a faux-leather case, bulging at the seams with promising content, Mrs Reign opened Parliament and recited the new government’s proposed legislative programme for the coming year.

“Have you seen this?” Thoughtful Man said, passing the case over for inspection.  It was surprisingly heavy, requiring both hands to guide it to the floor and prevent flattened toes. “That should keep you occupied for a bit”. He was right. A glance at the protruding spines produced a squeal …


… and the urge to break out plastic opera glasses. “Programmes! These are all our programmes”.  I grabbed a handful and got comfortable …

“Shows, concerts, places of interest.” I looked up beaming, “All the places we went together. I’d forgotten all about these”.

“Of course.” Thoughtful Man managed to keep the ‘harumph’ out of his voice but not off his face. “I keep everything.” He’s not called ‘Thoughtful Man’ for nothing. “I don’t think that’s all of them, but it’s enough to get you started. Why don’t you take some photos and then pick one to focus on.” He handed me a camera and retired to a safe distance.

programmes 1 programmes 2

Where to start? There was a lot to choose from but fortuitously a prompt arrived from A Void at Merovee … Phantasmagoria mention by A Void Erasure … not the sort proposed by the new government and read out by Mrs Reign … but the campy band and their ‘Phantasmagorical‘ concert that I had to go see twice at the Hammersmith Odeon in 1992.

Erasure Phantasmagorical Program Erasure Phantasmagorical Program insert

I’d bought the concert tickets for Thoughtful Man, as his gift the first Christmas after we were married.  But as luck would have it, he was travelling that night so I ended up taking Sister Juju.  Afterward, as we left the theatre, the sweat rapidly cooling on our hot and tired bodies, we hoarsely agreed “OMG! He has to see it!”

The next day I set about trying to find more tickets, no mean feat considering this was pre-internet days …

Not quite that desolate, Clicky, but I can see why you might think that.

It was the giant, Pip, from work at Big Shop, who unexpectedly came to my rescue …

Pip comes to Roob's Aid

These tickets were even better than the first, right at the front, but even better than that, we got to have the phantasmagorical experience together …

Jealous much, Clicky?

“Have you finished that yet?” Thoughtful Man reappeared, looking anxious; he knows what a terrible shot I am. He spotted the shiny programme. “Erasure! Bloody brilliant!.” He turned away, leafing through the pages. “I’ll tell you what, have a song.”