Podcasts: Croppie Coffee, Episode One
Croppie Coffee (Episode One)
Hosted by Simon Mumford & Connor Skerman
Available via Spotify
Do you remember your first steps into croppiedom? When you were naive and dropped into The Barge to listen to someone or other telling you something about crop circles that was an approximation of an already tired myth. Or maybe when you bumped into some minor name on top of Walkers Hill who’d had a bonkers theory published on the Crop Circle Connector about the 1996 circle at Bishops Cannings; they must have really known what they were talking about. If you’d thought such halcyon days of cerealogical ignorance were in the past then it’s time to reconsider. Episode one of the Croppie Coffee podcast has dropped on Spotify.
Hosts are Connor Skerman and Simon Mumford, a likeable and enthusiastic pair from Dorset eager to learn more about crop circles. Their guest is Steve Tyler, a conspiracy minded DJ from an obscure community radio station on the west coast of Scotland.
The experience of listening to this episode is akin to being sat in the old Crop Circle Café. Three men are talking circles. Two aren’t ashamed to admit they know very little, looking to the third for guidance. You sit there, entranced as the canards unintentionally and joyfully roll from the third chap’s tongue. Geese won’t fly over crop circles … old blokes with planks and string … the Yorkshire UFO group was run by the police … devil circles … the powers that be use black magic to discredit the truth … farmers are paid to plough up crop circles … those famous Juliette and Mandrill Set circles. You want to laugh at the thought of a baboon crop circle but then the hilarity slowly turns to annoyance. You realise this Tyler bloke has got no idea what he’s on about. He’s never been into a crop circle and admits it. How can he say nobody has ever been prosecuted for making a crop circle? How, for God’s sake, does he not know there are plenty of incomplete crop circles that have been found through the years? If only one of the hosts knew enough to challenge some of the assertions Tyler is sharing with us. It could have made for interesting discussion.
Another frustration is the production. The audio is dominated by a tense, unsuitable and intrusive background music track that makes listening excessively tough. Go quiet ambient or go silent! There are also a few other sound issues and at least one section featuring a technical problem that should have been edited out. But let’s not be too harsh. This is the first episode. Audio editing and production are tasks that take time to learn. Some of us have been there.
All said, the first episode of Croppie Coffee is a curiously engaging affair; (unintentionally) amusing, frustrating, annoying and entertaining in equal measures. If you want that feeling of listening in to a group of people who know very little about their subject matter then go for it. Still, crop circles are a journey and we expect the hosts will learn more as they go on. It’s just a real shame they didn’t start with a more informed guest.