Saturday, 28 July 2012

Revenge, at last, on the village gossips

The North Bucks Rural Womens' Society - a ridiculous, ostentatious title for the 'blue rinse' brigade - hold meetings in the old tin shed, which serves as the village's meeting hall, to talk about rural affairs, cookery, wines, art, nature, etc.  Rather, a very old girl called Beryl gives a 3-hour monologue on the techniques associated with Macramé Cross-Stitch or how to get the best Windsor Fondant Butter Icing, followed by a deafening rendition of All Things Bright And Beautiful.

How riveting.  If there was ever any evidence that this remote but bucolic corner of Buckinghamshire was a cultural wasteland, it is apparent now.

This is Beryl, my village's oldest pensioner with expert knowledge she loves to share on 
how to dust high-backed, winged chairs; how to shake 'n' vac on deep shagpile carpets; 
and the best way to get grease-stains out of anti-macassars.  
Described locally as "Indispensible and gripping, she's a mine of relevant information".

I don't get involved in village affairs.  However, apparently the North Bucks Rural Womens' Society heard on the 'local grapevine' that I'd recently moved to the village and of my love of film as well as my extraordinary collection dating back to the 1920s, and they asked if I could lend them a good, heart-warming film for them to watch at their next meet, this evening.

Despite being in the age of internet, email and mobile phones,
this grapevine is the sole means of communication in rural areas of England.

I went straight to my film library housed in the west wing.  It takes up a whole room.  "Something educational, inspiring.  Something that all sensibilities will enjoy.  One of the classic films, if you please." said the little note scribbled on lilac paper.

"And it's U-R-G-E-N-T" was the valedictory remark, written in two-inch high letters, yet without a word of thanks.

I was repulsed by the writer's choice of stationery.  Lilac paper?  What is the writer trying to say to me?  What an extraordinary  faux pas.

 Lilac writing paper - used in many rural areas as a hidden, coded message to make indecent propositions of a lesbian nature upon an unsuspecting party

Of course, I replied immediately, writing on ordinary white un-lesbian paper with a quill pen, suggesting Gone With The Wind, a historical, epic film and Purlizter prize-winner.   Nothing is more legendary than Vivien Leigh's performance as Scarlett O'Hara.

The suggestion of a screening of Gone With The Wind was duly accepted, again coming back to me on lesbian lilac notepaper, and it was then I realised who was behind the little note asking for help.

Let's just nickname her Mrs Blackpudding.  

I don't like her at all.  

Let me describe her, so you know her if you see her:  she runs their little, secret society with military precision, yellow clipboard tucked under her arm. 

She's clearly a "sandwich short of a picnic", as she has a very odd way of speaking, referring to children in the village as "insubordinates" and once describing my poodle with no small amount of joy as "A curious, hirsute object, it does have odd locomotion don't you think? I think it uncanny how pets look like their owners. Do you sleep with it?".

She's utterly humourless, with the face of a shrew, and is never seen without her pillbox hat, no doubt trying to create a false impression of Victorian self-righteousness.

She boasts about making her own perfume from rose petals squashed into old jam-jars full of water, which would explain the malodorous air about her.

I suspect she 'drinks from the furry cup', since she runs a cafe-cum-shop called The Ginger Pig, selling Buckinghamshire Black Puddings; black pudding production itself is a well-documented lesbian vocation.   

She gave a scathing reading last week to all those assembled at the village hall entitled "All Men Are Pigs".  Clearly, she has in-depth knowledge on the subject given that she rears pigs only to make black pudding out of them and sell it to the village.

I usually go and vandalise her shop's signs late at night, after too much vodka.  

She wrote a letter of complaint recently about the height of my topiary hedge, claiming its design was "grossly inappropriate" and detracted from the village's intrinsic beauty. 

I fail to see anything grossly inappropriate about the above photo of my front lawn.

Therefore, I swapped the video, just to teach her a lesson she'll not forget.  

Whilst the video box says Gone With The Wind, and she's announced to the entire village that is what will be screened, what they'll actually be getting is this:

I do hope they enjoy, although the ones who've clearly lost their marbles probably won't even notice the difference.  They'll be too engrossed drinking their piping-hot tea, which comes thick with unstrained tea-leaves and floating lumps of limescale from the filthy, ancient tea urn, and is served in plastic beakers, despite the presence of nice china cups in the cupboard.  

And if Mrs Blackpudding ever takes issue with me about giving her the wrong film, my response will be as Clark Gable in his final line to Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind: "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn".


  1. احب اشارك معاكم موقع متخصص في اعمال الحديد والاستانلس
    ايه رايكم فيه؟