Mixing With the Hoi Polloi

My good chum, Squire Porter of Longtown, has invited me to attend a game of Association Football. For those of you in the dark, this a modern game played by tradesmen. They chase around some wasteland following the movements of a rotund piece of leather and they intermittently cuddle each other in a state of euphoria.

On the periphery of this wasteland, are the masses. A vast throng of tradesmen attired in cloth caps and tattered tweed raincoats, singing music hall ditties, cheering their favoured players and uttering crude phrases that would make the Ladies shudder.

An Association Football

It is jolly good of The Squire to include me as my sensitivities are such, that when I am in such close contact with a high spirited rabble of common folk, I can come up in a rash. Fortunately, he has managed to cordon off half the arena for our sole use where he has promised to ply us with vintage claret and fine foods.

The Squire also advises that there is much money to be made out of Association Football. Miners and factory workers are apparantly keen to spend their earnings on their chosen teams paraphanalia.They are even known to voluntarily wear their team’s jumpers on market day.

So, I am minded to go. The Squire has kindly given me some tips so that I may enjoy myself:

1) I must cheer with unbridled joy whenever I see two chaps kissing and cuddling.

2) I must proclaim that the umpire is a blessed idiot on at least four occasions.

3) I must sing the school hymn very loudly. However, if I sing in Latin I am likely to get some warm ale poured over me.

4) It is inadvisable to wear my top hat.

If I follow this advice, then I should have a jolly good day. If I survive, I will report to you, my dear readers, my anthropological findings next week.


Croquet on The Lawn

It is with great delight to announce that the croquet pitch has been laid out for the summer. It always warms my heart to see the hoops put up and to see the table by the side of the pitch laden with lemonade, cucumber sandwiches and Victoria Sponge Cake.

This year is even more exciting than previous years in that the pitch is new. My old pitch had been brutalised by beastly moles.

I did attempt to coerce that cad Austin’s young boy to go down the holes and try and gas the beasts out, but Austin’s wife refused. Apparantly on the grounds that it was too cruel to allow a two year old do such a chore. I could not see it myself but I do not like arguing with the fairer sex. They always seem to get the better of us poor chaps with their wily ways.

Anyhow, I had to give up on the pitch and rather than find a a new one in my large estates I thought that I should select a tenant farmer to have the honour of hosting my croquet pitch. And as I am a generous landlord, I decided to increase the lucky farmer’s rents for the honour.

I selected McFungus’ farm. He is such a pleasant chap with a cheery demeanour and a long line in tedious stories. We managed to flatten half his crops in the process but he is so amiable that he still waves at me with his middle finger whenever we pass and mutters all sorts of pleasantries under his breath.

The State Visit

I have been honoured by the presence of the little known Scandinavian Princess Ien, this Easter weekend. Her claim to have royal blood has been unverified by Debretts but she is awfully good fun and so we shall let that pass. Her penchant for the finest champagne means that we never hear a peep from her before midday.

The Princess has impeccable manners. She has the appearance of a Lady with a permanent smell under her nose. It is a demeanour that reflects well on her and assures me that she is from impeccable lineage.

She has a loyal companion, Little Paulo.

A dapper chap of small stature and a twinkle in his eye. Some say he is descended from travelling tinkers. Others that he is a scion of the Medici family. He deals in second hand carriages and golden trinkets and has the frightful habit of sending and receiving telegrams at all hours of the day. It is ghastly carry on and I mean to have a word with the old boy.

It is perhaps disconcerting that I have to cavort with a chap who works for a living, but he provides us with many amusing anectodes of the trading classes. The japes that he relates convinces me that trade can contribute nothing to the governance of our proud nation.

Legislation is the preserve of the aristocarcy and it is our duty, for the good of England, to continue to guard our own narrow interests. Hip Hip Hurrah.

Dastardly Willy

Last week, my hair was a little unkempt after challenging a Whig to a duel, and so a visit to my good friend Dastardly Willy was in order. He does the finest coiffure in the West of England.

Here is a photograph of the old chap.

Dastardly Willy

I am pleased to report that his genius with a pair of scissors meant that I came out of his back street emporium with my head held high and in pristeen condition. I therefore decided to head towards the seedy end of town for a crafty ale and a spot of high jinx at the cabaret before returning to The Club.

However, on my way I was accosted by a dandy chap with a pair of pink pantaloons and a mask on. He threatened to knock my top hat off and scratch my monocle if I did not give him a sovereign. I considered laughing at his camp manner, but I was too affronted by his nerve in accosting a member of the English aristocracy. I said as much and then something quite extraordinary happened. The dandy chap proceeded to remove his mask and I was flabbergasted to see that it was my old mucker Dastardly Willy.

“Sorry old bean,” Dastardly said, “but I did not realise it was you. I must have had too much brandy for breakfast and your face was somewhat a blur.”

Dastardly went onto explain that styling hair no longer holds the fascination it once did and so in his spare time he likes nothing better than to burgle his way through the backstreets of Bath. Well it sounded like an awful lot of fun but I declined to become his assistant as I had the pressing matter of an ale and the cabaret to attend to.