Tuesday 11 December 2007

Wizzard get it wrong; the Authorized Version gets it right

I’m beginning to feel better, though puzzled as to why I ever felt so bad in the first place. The only logical explanation seems to be that my body staged an all-out strike (with extensive secondary picketing) in protest against being forced to attempt to digest three incredibly large and rich meals (including two traditional Christmas dinners) in the shortish space of 36 hours.

Fair enough, I suppose, but how come that Bloke gets away with it who celebrates Christmas 365 days a year (except in Leap Years, when it’s 366)? He’s always on the wireless as a seasonal filler at some point in December, explaining how he puts on his party hat every day and sits down to a full turkey spread with all the trimmings before watching his recording of the Queen’s Christmas Message. The silly sod. Come to think about it, I’ve never seen him on the TV. He’s probably 35 stone and bright yellow. On the other hand, I’m pretty sure he’s got a girlfriend, which puts him one giant leap ahead of me.

A piece I wrote in my local newspaper about the coming Apocalypse produces a flurry of e-mails. One supports my contention that all attempts to prophesy the date are doomed to failure with the following Biblical quotations:

“Of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” (Matt. 24:36)

“Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.” (Matt. 24:42)

“Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.” (Mark 13:33)

“If the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.” (Luke 12:39-40)

Glad to have got that one cleared up. Meanwhile, a devout Catholic friend I cited in the article writes that “I believe in the eventual Apocalypse not because of what the Bible says (that is Protestantism) but because of what the Church teaches. Where the Church derives her teaching from is a matter for her.”

Perhaps I should stick to writing about things I know something about. But then I wouldn’t do much writing at all.

This afternoon we drive to Holkham and park by the Hall for a circular walk around the lake, striding out through a huge herd of fallow deer and taking in the church within the park. It has the unusual name of St Withburga’s, which is the oddest thing I have heard since some woman decided to call her hedgehog sanctuary St Tiggywinkle’s. I suspect that the latter is not a name that my Catholic friend would recognize from his calendar.

It is alleged that the Parochial Church Council of St Withburga’s came within a whisker of signing up a major ten-year sponsorship deal with McDonald’s, but it fell through when the company insisted that they change the name to St Withfries.

An English Bloke's home

The sort of modest tribute to which every Bloke aspires

A inscription likely to inspire hollow laughter among the hill farmers of Northumberland

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