Celebrities say silicon and bikes are key to civilisation

The BBC is very ambitious because right now it’s presenting the History of the World in 100 objects. Very ambitious indeed. And all very cosy.

We had a lass at the British Museum on the TV telling us that the statue of Tara that somehow ended up in Bloomsbury versus Sri Lanka was still iconic because Asian religions didn’t create a difference between sex and religion. Er, how come the beautiful statue of Tara ended up in Bloomsbury? Any chance the Marbles will go back to Greece?

But right at the end of the BBC teaser came some wonderful quotes from modern “personalities”.

An emblem of our modern civilisation, according to clapped out Labour politician Tony Benn, was the mini-computer called the Crackberry, sorry Blackberry.

David Attenborough was a bit more acute – he said the microprocessor was a huge element of 21st century civilisation.

James Dyson, inventor of modern hoovers, reckoned it was the photovoltaic cell.

Darcus Howe chose CCTV, because he said, quite wittily, that it marks the end of civilisation. Chinese State TV?

Journalist John Humphreys says it was the bicycle because it allowed people to travel some distance and get into bed with their lovers.