The Spring Clean

‘You’re going to meet Catherine Dawes? Wow!’ Gary’s sharp intake of breath showed his friend Dave what he thought of the idea. Dave had been accepted for Catherine’s programme, the Spring Clean where, to put it crudely, slobs who lived in squalor were taught the virtues of being clean and house proud. Catherine Dawes was a star of cable television and an object of fantasy … Continue reading The Spring Clean

In Mary’s Month

In the Catholic tradition May is Mary’s month, a month of devotions to the Blessed Virgin. Events I read about this week reminded me about a short story by the Polish writer Marek Hłasko.  Hłasko (1934-1969) was the enfant terrible of post-war Polish literature, not so much attacking sacred cows but rolling them in the dirt and making his relish clear.  He revelled in the … Continue reading In Mary’s Month

I Place My Hand on Myself

In  the 1930s there was a musical called Young England. Inspired by the ideals of Baden Powell and Moral Rearmament it was a call to build a purer better Britain. UKIP would have approved, not least some of the party’s loopier elements. Intended to be stirring and patriotic it bombed and its unintended humour had the audience rolling in the aisles. It suffered the ignominy … Continue reading I Place My Hand on Myself