Tag Archives: wives

Too Much Sleep!

I think I must have had too much sleep over the last few days because last night I found myself lying awake and listening to Julia breathing.

And that was how the concept of the Wifeorgan was born. It’s a little like an organ but with the added benefit of being very soothing to a married man: while he can hear his wife sleeping he can relax – free of fears about comments on his dress sense, demands for mature behaviour and suggestions that he might like to rethink his last comment.

I have checked. There are some weird musical instruments, but none involving sleeping wives.

There will be three main problems –

Getting them to agree. I can already hear a rising chorus of female criticism on the grounds of immaturity, practicality and having nothing to wear. At least we won’t have a problem with the perennial favourite – nobody’s bum looks big under a duvet.

Logistics – transporting a large number of sleeping women is going to be tricky. Not as tricky, I suspect, as transporting a lot of non-sleeping women and making them go to sleep on cue, which is likely to a a horror second only to herding meercats. It is going to take some planning.

Tuning. I’m not going to invite any husband out there to comment, but in my experience this can be tricky. One night you can be wafted away to beautiful dreams by the gentle breathing of the woman you love. The next night you may find yourself hanging onto the duvet with the fervour of the Flying Dutchman as it billows in the air movement produced by a demon imitating a chainsaw killing pigs. I’m not saying anyone in our house snores, but if you want to infer it from my words, please feel free.

And that my friends, fresh from a place hollowed out by insomnia, is my plan for the Wifeorgan.

It’s possible there might be an Arts Council Grant in this…




Bad Things to Buy on Ebay – Update

This is the update from yesterday’s post – any more suggestions?

  1. Wives
  2. Horses
  3. Things sold “for spares”
  4. Bomb-making manuals
  5. Chemical fertiliser (large amounts)
  6. TBA
  7. TBA
  8. TBA
  9. Diamonds
  10. Things with blurred photographs

I’ve had two suggestions that ebay is a bad place to look for a wife, from John Knifton and Charliecountryboy and have to admit I can see that being true. I’m surprised at how many people seem to meet online these days. It seems that 22% of couples meet online, making it the second most popular method of meeting, compared to 24% who meet through mutual friends.

John even went so far as to introduce Thomas Hardy and The Mayor of Casterbridge into his answer, ensuring that I have some culture and history in the post, even if it is a history of wife selling. It also gives me a chance to work in the story of Hardy’s heart.

The other suggestion, from The Snail of Happiness, is “things sold for spares” as the bit you want is invariably the bit that has worn out on the one you just bought. That brings back memories of searching scrap yards for car parts in the days when cars were simpler and I was poorer. When you found the right model of car it was invariably lacking the bit you wanted.

Charliecountryboy did suggest Betamax videos, but nobody (including charity shops) wants VHS either. As for Philips 2000…

I’m going to wait and see before making a decision about this.

Paths of Glory

The boast of heraldry, the pomp of pow’r,
         And all that beauty, all that wealth e’er gave,
Awaits alike th’ inevitable hour.
         The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
I’ve just finished reading The Final Whistle: The Great War in Fifteen Players . I bought it last week when I was supposedly getting rid of some books at the Oxfam shop. It is, as you may be able to guess from the title, a book about the Great War and rugby. I’m not one of those people who can quote details of Divisions and battles and all that stuff but I do have an interest in the subject, and I also like rugby.
As a result, I am now motivated to finish a post I began after visiting Southwell Minster. For me, the most interesting part of the visit is the original wooden grave marker of Major J P Becher. It’s on the wall of the graveyard at the east end of the Minster, and I always worry that one day it will disintegrate.

Original wooden grave marker at Southwell Minster

In this case, Major Becher is commemorated in many other places, as are his brothers-in-law. The brothers-in-law were both killed on the day that Becher suffered his fatal wounds. He lived on for another ten weeks before finally dying, having been too badly injured to be sent home from France.

Grave marker – Major J P Becher

His son, as seen from the small cross in the picture, died in the Second World War.

Father and son

Families were allowed to have the original wooden grave markers returned to them when the permanent stone markers were erected, though I’m not sure how many actually applied for them. I imagine that although it represented closure for many families, it was far too painful for others.
One of my great grandmothers, having lost a son and a son-in-law and seen two other sons seriously injured, refused to even to discuss the war. Another one, having been widowed and left with three young daughters, died in the TB hospital in Lancaster five years after the death of her husband.
It was International Women’s Day yesterday, so it might be appropriate to spend a moment thinking about the women in this story, who also suffered in the war, though nobody erected a memorial to them.
The above link to my great grandmother’s headstone was a complete surprise to me. I was going to add CWGC details but browsed a few others and found that. Though I’ve been in that church and graveyard several times in the past I never thought to look for family gravestones at the time and it was on the list of “things to do”.
That’s the wonder of the web, and a whole new post.