You know Bosco, the popular children’s entertainer and all-round cultural icon of yesterweek? Well, I don’t. Couldn’t tell you the first thing about him (it is a him, isn’t it?). Likewise Wanderly Wagon. Ditto Forty Coats. Not a clue, me. But this isn’t one of those embarrassing cases where a couple of uptight trendy parents sniffed and preened and decided that their children would be much better off if they came home from school and relaxed in front of a nice Proust. It’s just that the house in Monaghan where I grew up (after a fashion) is located in some sort of televisual blind spot. We could pick up the British channels that wafted over the border from the North but RTE, for some reason, failed to penetrate. The reception wasn’t so much snowy as avalanchey. If you sat six inches from the screen and squinted, you could occasionally make out something that looked like a face but could just as easily have been a clock. It didn’t bother me back then but I must say that I feel a certain loss today, now that fifty percent of my generation’s conversations are about the TV programmes of our vanished youth. When talk turns to Bosco, for example, I feel like a foreign language student who was doing fine for a while before everyone got drunk and started talking faster. I catch an occasional phrase that makes sense but spend most of my time smiling politely and sneaking peeks at my watch. Oh well. I don’t suppose I missed out on very much. Bosco, who was some sort of puppet by all accounts, sounds like a pain in the hoop. And I’ll have always have Rainbow. They can’t take that away from me.