If you hear news from
Last time this happened, her undiluted enthusiasm for The Fall meant that the peasants thereabouts had to put up with the complete works of Mark E Smith cranked out at ear-splitting volume for weeks on end. La Gubbins only grew tired of the self-styled “Northern white crap that talks back” after it was pointed out to her that Smith is slowly but surely turning into Anthony Burgess – Mancunian, drunk on words, and frighteningly prolific, of course, but the most compelling evidence is the physical resemblance.
La Gubbins had always harboured a deep if irrational hatred of Burgess, so she burned all her Fall records on a pyre and silence reigned. But now she has discovered the work of Swiss maestro Blinky Guido, laid her hands on every single record he ever made, and is in the throes of madness. Hence the dead birds and the stunned cows.
Blinky Guido will be known to some of you as the man who created prog-wop, an unholy alliance of progressive rock and doo-wop which some enlightened lands have made illegal. You may have sat through the full twenty-minute horror that is Why Do Fools Fall In Love In The Magic Kingdom Of Elves or, even worse, These Little Eldritch Unicorns Of Mine. Someone swears they saw Mrs Gubbins smuggling a mellotron into her room the other day, which doesnâ€™t bear thinking about.
Perhaps the only way to bring an end to this nightmare is to doctor a photograph of the Swiss prog-wop pioneer to make him look like J B Priestley, another writer who elicits from Mrs Gubbins a strangulated cry of loathing.
My sister is married to a Priestley, and that particular priestly is a great great grandson of the famous Priestley – fortunately not J. B. but Joseph – the scientist who argued for the doctrine of Phlogiston long after the establishment had refuted it.