Weight and Stuff Report – 22 January 2012

Yes, well, back up today, and that won’t get better tomorrow to any great extent, as despite yesterday’s vague intentions of going for a walk somewhere today, I decided to stay in. For some reason, I felt an urge to watch all of the 1979 BBC adaptation of John Le Carré’s Tinker Tailor Solidier Spy, and as that consists of seven 50-minute episodes, that was most of the day sorted out. Having listened to an audiobook[1] of it not so long ago, it was interesting to compare it with the source material[2]. Bits were rearranged, making the narrative a bit more linear[3], details were omitted to fit the long novel into a relatively short form, but overall it’s an excellent example of adapting a novel for TV, and still very watchable over 30 years on. Alec Guinness was, of course, superb as George Smiley, and Patrick Stewart’s brief, silent appearance as his opponent Karla is impressive. I haven’t so far seen the 2011 movie version, but it’s on my list of things to get round to. I think I needed to have a reasonably fresh memory of this version first.

Anyway, having diverted today’s[4] report into a sort of review thingy, here’s your picture of the day, which is the lighthouse at Seaburn. It was relocated there from its former home on the south Wear pier, apparently. I had wondered why it was sited where it is…

Seaburn

Seaburn

[1] I got a set of them free last year in a newspaper promotion. Didn’t even need to buy the papers, making them good value. Interestingly, reader Michael Jayston adopted a quite distinctly Guinness-like manner of speaking when reading Smiley’s lines.
[2] Previous viewings either preceded reading the book or were too far after my last reading to make my recollections suspect.
[3] Though not entirely – there’s a lot of flashback, recollection, and the like. Le Carré’s spy novels are gloriously complex.