Thursday, July 1, 2010

We need to talk about Kevin

Had you once told me that I would be seriously enamoured of a serious, balding man named Kevin, I would have laughed in your face. But I am.

Not, I hasten to add, Kevin Rudd, former PM and man who took out last week’s award for Worst Week At Work. Possibly ever. He seems like a nice enough chap, serious it is true, but lacking somewhat in…passion.

The other Kevin, my Kevin, has passion in spades.

In light of my recent posts about the delights of Monster Movers, Trawlermen and obscure Danish television series, it will come as no surprise to most of you that I am a Grand Designs fan. As in fanatic.

I love Kevin McCloud. He has been described as Thinking Women’s Crumpet. I do not think of him in this way (but do not get me started on Todd Sampson from The Gruen Transfer). I just think he is one of the most engaging personalities on television, and the fact that he can turn a home build into grand drama with his ‘secretly I think they’re nuts’ tone, makes him must-watch for me.

Yes, I am married to The Builder, so I admit to a lifelong penchant for utes and men with hammers. But Kevin is not that. He reminds me of an academic who wandered onto a building site and decides to write his anthropology honours thesis about it.

The first night I met The Builder’s friends, one of his BFFs told me that when he thought of my new man he invariably thought of Joists. It made me laugh, but as time went by I realised there was more to the story than met the eye.

The Builder is a details man. Ask him a question and prepare yourself for a full answer. Ask him if a roof needs fixing, for instance, and he will take you through it joist by joist. He wants you to understand because he has a passion for what he does. But he brings that same enthusiasm and attention to detail to everything.

Kevin is the same. Earnest, funny and keen that you get what it is that he loves about his work.

Grand Designs is what reality TV should be. All the drama, humour, tragedy and fun of real life, without the machinations and the terrible product placements.

And Kevin. Always Kevin.


  1. All I can say is I know him. May email you!!!

  2. And I have to add that my husband is the same. Not as Kevin but The Builder. He gave up his media job, went back to college, and is now a Building Surveyor. First of all he said he wanted to be an architect and I was like No! 8 years!!!

    He's never happier than when talking about roofs or elevations or damp coursing or joists. He has a little book full of jottings and diagrams that look like hieroglyphics to me. He recently submitted plans to our council to have a roof terrace put on our house - even though I'm scared of heights. I think he'd like to build us a house from scratch - but not have it filmed.

  3. My husband is a huge fan of Grand Designs too. He has an abiding love for design (designed our own beautiful big extension all by himself, complete with taps from France, an Aga from the UK and special fleur-de-lys sheers for the French doors*) but I think he also gets a great big kick out of Kevin and Kevin's passion and accent and jackets and hardhats.
    Passion is what it's all about, isn't it? Kevin has it in spades. I bet the builder does too.

    *He's not gay. I swear. Hard to believe based on that evidence though, I admit.

  4. The more you share, the more I'm fascinated by The Builder. Great post!

    American TV scared me away from reality shows, but I may give Grand Designs a shot.

  5. Ah! So that's what a Fibro is!

    Anyway, what is it with KMcC at the moment. You're literally the fourth person who's mentioned him to me today.... which is weird, because, and this is where you'll hate me, my sister had to turn DOWN a job with him yesterday. She's gutted, but she'd already accepted something else.... Still. Nearly a brush with fame!

  6. I have to confess I am partial to a bit of Kevin and a man with a hammer. My husband chose me 15 years ago because he was impressed with my renovation and we haven't stopped building since.

  7. I've missed out on the whole Kevin thing as I've never watched the show. Must get onto that.

    I'm laughing because LOML always panics when he knows he needs to ask The Builder to help him with something (note the use of "knows he needs to" - there are some things that only The Builder can do). He steels himself for the blow by blow account on the intracacies of the job. I tell him "lap up the knowledge as The Builder is best in class" and he says "can't we just do it together, you know, quietly?"

  8. You have maybe seen my Twittering about Kevin, with Naomi of Under the Yard Arm? .

    Kevin makes me moist, simple as that.

    Bespoke. Oh, the way he says it.

    Oh my, my knees just went weak.

  9. What an excellent day. I am now not only secure in the knowledge that I'm not alone with my Kevin obsession, but I am one degree closer to bridging the gulf between us (if only in a cyberspacey kind of way).

    As for Plan B's sister who TURNED DOWN A JOB with KEVIN - all I can say is that other job must have been amazing. As for Maxabella's LOML, one day he will be very happy that he has had a first-hand, detailed account of the right way to sand. Very happy.

  10. I don't mind a bit of GD, myself. Especially when the homeowners are complete twats (and Kev lets us know he thinks so). And I have been known to hunker down with Danielle on a winter's day when the Lifestyle channel's showing a GD marathon.

    But, let's face it, he comes very, very close to what some impolite people (never me!) might call 'wanking'. You know, at the end of each show, when he does his wrap-up and tells us about the house being "more than just a house - it's a personal statement"... I laugh and laugh and laugh.

    Plus, I think I've only seen two episodes where he reached the end of the show and admitted that he hated the homes - one was a 'houseboat' and the other was (I think) in Spain, and he said it looked like a shopping mall.

    I will continue to watch, on occasion, nevertheless.

  11. Love Kevin, love Grand Designs. Love.

  12. Can't say I've noticed your Kevin. Have caught that show a few times, including a bit of it yesterday, and every single time (including yesterday), all I could think about is, 'F*ck, I am NEVER building a house!'.

  13. I am totally addicted to the Lifestyle channel on's getting embarrassing.

  14. LOL I haven't watched the show and had to "google" Kevin to see who you are talking about. However I did love the way you described the passion the Builder has. I love a man in a carpenter's belt, only! The comments above are great. They made me smile and Lucy's made me snort and reread. She did say moist!

  15. Oh my goodness, Lucy... your comemnt made me blush! :)

    I watch Grand Designs and did not even realise who Kevin McCloud was. LOL

  16. Further evidence that we are twins, separated at birth.

    Love Kevin and Grand Designs.My son wants to be an architect when he grows up, so I make sure he gets to watch GD for inspiration. Really. That's why we watch it. It isn't at all so that I can delight in Kevin McC and his tone of disbelief as he forces people to confess just how much their 'dream home' has cost them financially, emotionally and psychologically.

  17. I too love Kevin and Grand Designs. An avid fan of the K man.

  18. I, also, adore Kevin.

    I have to confess to being a bit of an anglophile when it comes to my men. My husband, Kevin and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, are my three favourite English.

    It's the accent....and the gorgeous, witty, sexy nerdishness of each of them.


Thanks for popping by the Fibro. I love to hear from you!

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