Tag Archives: scrofula


The house needs repair, summer is ending, I am old and arthritic. Politics has degenerated to infantile levels, nuclear war is just around the corner and the planet is dying.

For some reason, as detailed yesterday, I am inexplicably happy.

There is quite clearly no reason to be happy, and I don’t consider it to be normal. I prefer gloom and think that a sensible man should expect nothing from life because that is what life is likely to give him.


Botham’s Whitby – an excellent pork pie

I could probably go to the doctor for pills – there must be something I can take to calm me down a bit – though they are likely, as so often, to find something else wrong with me. I wouldn’t mind if it was something interesting but at my age it’s usually something that involves taking your trousers down.

With an interesting disease I could have a whole new career ahead of me. If you can build a modern TV career on being from Essex what could you do if you had scrofula, also known as the King’s Evil or, less interestingly, cervical tuberculous lymphadenitis. That has good historical roots, gives a chance to talk about coins and I feel less guilty making jokes about it than I do about leprosy.

Julia - looking sophisticated in Bakewell

Julia – looking sophisticated in Bakewell

Leprosy used to be a good area for humour when I was younger, as Monty Python proves, but when you read up about it and the fact that more than 50 kids a day are diagnosed with Leprosy worldwide it doesn’t seem so funny.

When you think about it, I do have a lot to be happy about.

Maybe I should look on the bright side of life.

Tea, scones and sunshine. Bettys, Harlow Carr

Tea, scones and sunshine. Bettys, Harlow Carr

I added the photos later, when WP was working properly Рthey are things which make me feel happy. And in case you were wondering, they are in no particular order.

Boredom, what Boredom?

Yes, I’ve been doing cards again. I’ve done Star Trek, The Beatles and yet more A&BC football cards (the orange and red backs from 1972-3). Thanks to an informative website I’m now in possession of much more knowledge than I really need on this subject.

I think my brain may be grinding to a halt, but I think I’ve isolated the point when the rot set into football. The 1970 set shows footballers with serviceable haircuts and quite a few broken noses. The 1972-3 set shows straighter noses and shocking haircuts. That three year window was the thin end of the wedge, and look where we ended up – diving, spray foam and perms.


Look at that haircut…


…and that moustache.

I grew my first moustache in 1975. It wasn’t a success. In truth they rarely are. Some things from the past should be left there – moustaches, I feel, are one of those things. As are rickets, platform soles and The King’s Evil.

For those of you interested in why one photo is upside down I have to confess that I don’t know. I struggled with a glitchy internet last night and had problems with a lot of photographs being upside down on the photo card. Eventually I just used two that seemed to be cooperative.

This morning I found that the post hadn’t actually loaded and one of the photos was upside down again.

So I gave up and loaded the post again with extra lines to explain the upside down photograph.

For those of you more arty types it’s an ironic take on the topsy-turvey nature of modern sport.

For the others, it’s what happens when you hand modern technology to a man who is barely past the crayon stage of artistic evolution.