The first bread roll was thrown directly after grace. As HRH The Duke of Gloucester and honoured guests of the PG Wodehouse Society’s biennial dinner took their seats in the magnificent Lincoln’s Inn Hall, the opening shot plopped into his bowl of pea and mint soup. ‘I’m terribly sorry, your Grace,’ beaked the Society’s chairman. … Continue reading In the soup!
Sitting on the end of my bed, I realise I’ve lost my sock – its perfect purple partner, present, but alone. Somewhere out there, the unemployed rascal is hiding, sneering, taunting me, free for the foreseeable future. Or perhaps it’s sad and lost, anxious for reassurance from its spouse, doomed to the dust and darkness … Continue reading I’ve lost my sock!
As Professor of Philology and Ancient Literature at Cambridge University and Fellow of Newnham College, I was recently obliged to catch a train into London to deliver a speech at the Royal Academy of Arts. I was appalled at having to open the door into First Class, carry my own briefcase, straighten the cotton antimacassar … Continue reading Querimonia!
We are comrades stuck in traffic. Nothing has moved for thirty minutes — it must be serious. Traffic opposite hurtles past, mocking our stationary plight. A lorry driver jumps down from his yellow cab, speculating through an open window. A distant ambulance wails along the line, cars crabbing away from its path. Finally, engines wobble … Continue reading Road Traffic Accident
I pull up outside her Mum’s small semi and bib the horn. ‘Sorry I’m late…forgot my leotard,’ she says, sliding onto the cream leather of my 1970 VW Beetle and lobbing her rucksack behind. I crunch a gear as we merge onto the main road; the high pedals clunking beneath my deck shoes. She lights … Continue reading Lifting me, lifting you
Sir Humphrey Hamilton Hogarth MBE FSA FBA had never been to his village Bonfire Night. Since Margaret had passed away, he had seldom ventured outside his country estate and was appalled at the thought of mixing with the locals. As retired Professor of Philology and Classics at Cambridge University, fellow of Newnham College and Royal … Continue reading Sir Humphrey is on fire!
Alison was determined to celebrate with or without her husband. When she confronted him about the hidden bottles of vodka, he exploded, driving off in a rage; the hire car skidding over the grass and flattening the chrysanthemums. ‘Will dad be coming to our party tonight?’ Sophie asked, stabbing the fleshy part of a pumpkin … Continue reading Joyeux Halloween!