Yes, I’m afraid I am, but better late than never, as they say. The media at the moment are swamped with impeachment hearings, China getting its thong up its crack about a bit of a heavy cold, and people raving about a sportsman, of whom I had never heard. Come on, people, he made a living throwing balls through a hoop; he was not the return of the Messiah. Cancelling the Lakers/Clippers game out of respect? All the breastbeating is a bit over the top, don’t you think? Even TFF sent ‘warmest condolences.’ That’s an odd turn of phrase, isn’t it?

Something completely different, then. This goes back a week or so, but hell. Some bunch of boffins with too much time and not enough to do but burn research grants claimed to have reproduced the voice of one Nesyamun, a priest in Egypt some 3000 years ago. His voicebox and associated bits were so well preserved when mummified, the pointyheads were able to 3D scan everything, then reconstruct things with 3D printing. Then fill it with sound waves. And run it through a voice synthesiser programme.

If we’re frank, the results weren’t that convincing. Was he saying ‘bed?’ Or ‘bad?’ ‘Bud?’ Even the scientists weren’t sure, and I’m not surprised. The monosyllable sounded like me when my facial palsy is bad, crossed with a Dalek. Those synthesiser programmes really aren’t good. Think Stephen Hawking really sounded like that? I’m sure you get the idea.

The propellorheads hedged their bets even further, claiming the timbre might be lower than reality. Or higher. Could go either way. Doesn’t inspire confidence does it?

Know what I’d have done? Scan up one of the researchers, reproduce their vocal organs, and see what they sound like. And if there was no resemblance, back to the drawing board. No point in making yourselves look like a bunch of deluded jerks.

Also, let’s be honest, who gives a rat’s arse about an ancient Egyptian priest’s voice?