Friday, 10 September 2010

Making Up For Lost Time

As I'm sure you know by now, I was away from the Sloppy Shire region last week. My initial plan was to come back to a whole heap of Sloppy Stars in the porch, and to spend a good hour going through them, scouring the letters pages for any little nuggets I would have missed otherwise. HOWEVER it turns out my father, in his esteemed wisdom, cancelled the papers for that week, meaning I missed out on all those letters and all those cryptic crosswords. Gutting.

Nevertheless, this week is a new week, and it brings papers. And it brings letters. Let's now sample a few of them!

Many people say they wish to have "green" burials when they die, in woodland surroundings. Fine. However, they have not apparently considered the probability that badgers will dig up and eat their remains. The only way to stop this would be to seal them in lead or stainless steel coffins. This would defeat the object.

Name and address supplied

What a FASCINATING letter. I suppose it's all true enough, just it tickled me that someone wrote this into the local paper.

Wife: "'s quite late...I'm going up to going to join me?"

Man: "No, sorry - I need to e-mail The Shropshire Star, to inform the good people of Shropshire the threat of badgers in respect to green burials in woodland surroundings."

Wife: "I'll just go and find some fresh batteries then."

Before we move onto the next letter, I'll give you a moment to re-read that and get the joke.

I'm so sorry.

Judging by the exam results, British youngsters are getting more intelligent every year.

I know where this is heading.

This is most gratifying but I'm afraid I have some nagging doubts.

Yep. Textbook. Every fucking year.

Why am I rarely impressed when I listen to them talking among themselves? Their language is often crude, to put it mildly.

No-one ever swore in the good old days. No-one. Ever. I think, in actual fact, the word "fuck" was invented in 1997, by Liam Gallagher.

Why do I rarely see them reading a quality daily newspaper or one of the serious weeklies?

This tickled me - the idea of there being a quality daily newspaper! Heehee.

On trains and buses, why do I rarely see them reading a book? When I do, it is invariably rubbish, like Dan Brown or a children's book.

Right, fuck off, on two counts. Firstly, I find it difficult to read on trains, buses, in cars - it makes me get motion sickness a little bit. Secondly, I like the way you said "children's book" when you clearly mean Harry Potter, but don't have the balls to say it. Harry Potter was fucking ace, you appalling man.

Why do they seem to ask of music only a loud noise and surface excitement? Some of the music of my generation was loud but it included Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Charlie Parker, not to mention Beethoven and Stravinsky.

Ludwig van Beethoven 1770-1827. From your generation, yeah?

Why, when at university, do many of them have to be sent on remedial courses to learn the basics of grammar?

This bit made me laugh, a lot, because it reminded me of a module I did in the first year of my English degree which was, to be honest, pretty much this. The fact it was taught by the most insufferably smug and patronising woman on the planet didn't help matters.

Why are academics always complaining that students don't always recognise well know literary and historical allusions? It's because they don't read enough. Why are employers complaining school leavers can't...

I'm going to take an unprecedented step, and cut the letter short. Just because he bangs on in the same vein for another four paragraphs and I don't have the space or the time for it.

Sidney Evans, Chirk

Victor Meldrew, Chirk

A few years ago a friend stated: "Why should we feel sorry for the farmers, they never felt sorry for the miners, nursers or police?"


During National Service in the RAF, I dumped some artificial mashed potato in a bin. Witnessing my acts a corporal cook threatened to charge me. I turned on him and said: "You can please yourself."


Overhearing my defiance an old sweat rallied to support me: "You can put the whole bloody camp on charge, mate," he bellowed. An RAF police corporal suggested us: "Where did you get this rubbish from?" The next day the mess sergeant (a real gent) promised me real potatoes.


Well, it's harvest thanksgiving soon, and let's raise our glasses to King Edwards and maris pipers.

Emyr Davies, Wrexham


I read recently that 38 trains built by Siemens in Germany are being delivered through the Channel Tunnel to be operated by First ScotRail. My poor old dad will be turning in his grave thinking about what happened to his former employer Metro Cammell, based in Birmingham, which was the largest producers in the world of railway carriages and wagons for the UK and overseas before its closure in 2005.

Who would have thought we won World War Two.

Oh, for fucks sake. You were doing so well.

Peter Hassall, Shifnal

Next please. You around, Allan Tucker?

According to the Blair book, he was "forced" over fox hunting and not Iraq. That says it all.

Allan Tucker, Oswestry

Another illuminating and interesting letter Allan, many thanks.

I have every sympathy for those caught up in the Pakistan flood disaster. However, perhaps if their government didn't spend so much on nuclear weapons they could look after their people better.

Andy Chaplin, Telford

Nice and tactful Andy, well done.

That's enough letters, I think we can all agree. But before I go, here's a little snippet from last nights paper, conveniently placed opposite the letters page, by reporter Andy Richardson:

Three short years ago, Gina (Yashere) was one of the UK's funniest women.

I officially give up.

1 comment:

  1. Sidney sounds like my kind of bloke. Might have to pop up to Chirk sometime soon to listen to Steve Reich and talk about what a darling Doris Lessing is.

    LOL JK I'mma lisen 2 sum NDUBZ. Readin iz 4 muppetz.