Like unto a prune . . .
Archive for the 'Twaddle' Category
I had a large shallow pan of “milk cake” on a cooker. The cooker was in the form of a basic four-legged table. The pan had overheated, and underneath the table ethereal blue flames flickered. Crawling under the table, I extinguished the flames by waving a dainty teaspoon.
What can it all mean?
Another still from the (Birds Chirping) film. That’s John Le Mesurier dressed as a funeral director.
I noticed that on BBC1 yesterday there was the first in a short series of programmes called Titanic With Len Goodman – Mr Goodman being one of the judges from Strictly Come Dancing. It is a curious combination of presenter and subject, and I wonder if we can look forward to Hindenburg With Alesha Dixon, The Munich Air Disaster With Bruno Tonioni, The Tay Bridge Disaster With Craig Revel-Horwood, The Lisbon Earthquake With Arlene Phillips, and, perhaps, The Black Death With Tess Daly.
I thought it prudent, when making preparations for last Friday’s Evening Of Lugubrious Music & Lopsided Prose, to provide the audience with a list of instructions, to ensure they conducted themselves properly. After all, one does not want to have to interrupt one’s babbling to have to deal with fits of the vapours, noisy potato crisp munching, or other distractions. The printed programme for the evening thus included this list, which may be of use to other performers:
INSTRUCTIONS FOR MEMBERS OF THE AUDIENCE
I. Please remain seated during the more exciting moments.
II. If for any reason you need to mop your brow, use a dainty napkin.
III. Spillages must be paid for in coinage of the realm.
IV. When the Darning-Needle of Destiny is unveiled, cower.
V. Unseemly pangs may be tempered by moral balance.
VI. Applause should be rendered with unbridled fanaticism.
VII. Drink ye every one the waters of his own cistern, until I come and take you away (Isaiah, 36 : 16,17)
That conversation, continued…
Elberry : what pillow do you use? is it stuffed with the feathers of birds or the skulls of mice?
Frank Key : An admixture of cotton wool and sand, wrens’ feathers and wolf hair
Elberry : and the sand, can you expand on its provenance? do you use the sand from the Alamogordo Test Range, or common or garden sand? is it related to the sand nightly deployed by the Sandman? Is it sand from the sandy road of Eliot’s Waste Land?
Frank Key : It is coarse sand, dredged from the vasty deep, then spread out, by much raking, to dry under a Panglossian sun, before being poured into the pillowcase through a gorgeous ornate metalwork funnel
Elberry : How do you do the dredging? Do you have an industrial dredging machine?
Frank Key : I use a mighty concrete dredger barge, built to Lambot’s original design rather than the later Gabellini or Edison models.
Elberry : i used to teach at Zeppelin, i think they make dredging machines but i am unsure if they are suitable for vasty deeps. Could you just use a spade? i ask as i thought about doing a bit of light dredging, to keep fit
Frank Key : Use of a spade beneath the vasty deeps is fraught with risk, but will undoubtedly boost your manliness. Or you might drown.
Elberry : Heroes don’t drown, they dredge.
Further to my report, last Saturday, of a Facebook Facecloth postage and subsequent comment, here is another. I will not be making a habit of this, but last night’s brief exchange of comments with Elberry is, I think, worth noting here.
I chuckled at a comment I read appended to a postage on the Grauniad’s Comment Is Free site, and so, on Facecloth, noted
A Comment Is Free comment over at The Grauniad : “Groan, and so the Guardian descends still further into being an upmarket version of Black Flag for the under 16s.” I chuckled.
The subsequent dialogue with Elberry went as follows
Elberry : more on the nature of this chuckling please, the sound, duration, effect on passers-by, etc.
Frank Key : Grating and somehow tragic, forty-nine seconds, solicitude, offers of loose change, thumpings.
Elberry : does it excite frenzies, sexual or otherwise?
Frank Key : Only in the raddled hearts of the unseemly
Elberry : is it pure to the pure, if the pure are privy to these terrible eruptions?
Frank Key : Alas, there are tincts
Elberry : would you consider removing these safeguards, so the many- headed rabble may hark to your mirth, and take heart therefrom?
Frank Key : I will consider it, while my head is upon the pillow, and I snooze, imminently
After tippy-tapping which, I retired to bed, rested my head upon the pillow, and snoozed. Alas, I did not after all consider removing any chuckle safeguards.
Last night I dreamed, not that I went to Manderlay again, yet again, yet again, but that I was hanging out with Emerson, Lake, and Lake’s mother, but not Palmer, of whom there was no sign. It was uneventful, as dreams go, but when I woke I did wonder what it might mean, and I decided to ask that question on Facebook Facecloth.
Answer came from William English, who wrote : ”After careful consideration it seems obvious that by omitting Carl Palmer, drummer with Atomic Rooster, and substituting him with Lake’s mother, you are erasing traumatic childhood memories of a “pram cellar” (being an anagram of Carl Palmer). Am I right?”
Eek! It has all come flooding back. I shall now undergo rigorous recovered memory therapy.
Emerson (present), Lake (present), Palmer (absent), Lake’s mother (not shown)
ADDENDUM : A particularly bewildering point about this dream is that I was never an aficionado of the band John Peel invariably referred to as Emerson, Lake & Parker, and have never owned any of their music in LP or CD form, nor indeed in cassette or 8-track or mp3, nor in any other format yet dreamed up by sound reproduction boffins.
Compare and contrast these two snaps. One shows a trio of carvings from an “Indian cemetery” (reportedly), taken in 1900. The second shows a trio of Channel 4 newsreaders performing a musical number at a charity event (reportedly), taken last week.
Dullwits and dunderpates would say “Well, Mr Key, so what? The only thing the two photographs have in common is that they show three figures. You could find thousands, nay, millions of similar snaps. What point are you trying to make?”
The point I am trying to make is that this is the first, albeit flimsy, evidence I have discovered of the cult surrounding bumptious newsreader Krishnan Guru-Murthy. Oh, there are flaws in my reasoning, many, many flaws. But I implore those of you who think I am talking twaddle to watch “KrishGM” (as he likes to be known… why???) very, very carefully in the coming months. The cult has something planned, I am sure of it.
[Indian cemetery snap from Dull Tool Dim Bulb. Cult offering from Channel 4 News.]
A friend of mine posted a Facebook Facecloth message, saying she is DJing tonight and has no idea what records to play, asking for tips on what “the kids” are listening to these days.
I replied: “It’s not what the kids are listening to, it’s what they should be made to listen to. I recommend Scriabin’s ‘Poem Of Ecstasy’, Op.54.”
Scriabin : tiny little hands
Last night I watched the first episode of Derren Brown’s new television series “The Experiment”. Is it possible, he asked, to hypnotise someone into carrying out an assassination, and for them to have no memory of the deed? This being a Derren Brown show, the answer was of course a resounding “yes!”. We watched as a harmless, affable young IT person was supplied with what he thought was a loaded gun, placed into a trance, and then, in a crowded theatre, calmly “shot” a celebrity. The target was Stephen Fry.
It was all very entertaining, but whereas we know (and he himself cheerfully admits) that Derren Brown is simply a showman with a bag of tricks, it was evidence that your very own Mr Key is a seer who can foretell the future. Back in the summer of 2009, I put these words into the mouth of the bestselling paperbackist Pebblehead:
You will recall Digby Smew, the fascist podcaster who first appeared in my book The Assassination Of Stephen Fry.
Cue eldritch, spooky music as I stalk off into the mist in my cape and wizardy hat.