Friday, May 28, 2010

Where Children Play Without Despair

We find ourselves gathered around the portal leading to part 30 of “A Couple of Tenors Short”.

This is another post where the title is taken from a song lyric with some kind of associated picture to give you a clue. This one is linked to the number 30.

Not quite so difficult today given the clue, but in the spirit of infant cordial, I give you the answer.

OK, the quiz questions out of the way, here is my mantra. This is a serial. Any new-joiners should start with the opener known as Part One.    
And having devoured the mantra, you will now find yourself looking down the road awaiting that troublesome recap. But wait! What has happened here? It’s gorn!

Well, not really, I have picked it up and placed it on a page of its own. If you feel the need to oil your important little places, feel free to find the recap here!

Now read on...

Jones stared at the block of ice as the chain saws slowly revealed the figure of Britannia. He watched the smiling faces of the dancers as they twirled and leapt on the pavement and on the street. He watched the glowing faces of the impromptu children’s choir as they belted out a rousing version of On Ilkla Moor Baht 'at.
Jones swore under his breath again.

Jones slowly opened the door of the car and went to the boot where he retrieved the previous Thursday’s copy of ‘The Sun’. Slamming the boot shut, he climbed back into his seat.

The occupants of the Zephyr watched in silence as two elderly men in white linen suits and broad brimmed fedora hats appeared from an office building. They were struggling with a waxwork of Oliver Cromwell dressed as Father Christmas. A couple of the children broke from the choir and helped position the waxwork by the piano. The elderly men rewarded the children with some Werther Original toffees.

“What do you make of that?” Jones shook his head slowly and passed the paper to Johnson.

“It’s on old newspaper, guv.” Johnson flicked idly to page 3.

Jones snatched the paper back and folded it to the entertainment section before thrusting it back to Johnson. “Read that.”

The girls had finished the ice sculpture. They had switched off their chainsaws and were standing back to admire their work. The various dancers, musicians and singers joined them and engaged in a round of exuberant hugging, back slapping and laughing. The crowd broke up and went on their way. In a few moments, all that was left behind was a waxwork of Oliver Cromwell looking disapprovingly at a haughty ice Britannia.

“Wow!” It was Brown who broke the silence in the back seat. “That is going to cause an absolute uproar. How on earth do they think they can get away with printing lies like that – and attributing them to the Prime Minister?”

Jones crossed his arms and stared straight ahead. There was a rustling of paper in the back.

“Hang on.” Johnson gave a laugh. “This is all a joke, right? This is one of those parodies. It’s full of daft stories about people I’ve never heard of. Is it Student RAG week or something, guv?”

Jones took a deep breath. “You’re the detectives, you tell me.”

The three detectives started to look for explanations for the article with the sat-nav occasionally interjecting to admonish Smithy over his driving, provide directions or to bring attention to various shoes on display in shop windows.

 Jones withdrew his mobile phone from his pocket and went through the address book. Hitting the dial button, he placed it to his ear.

“Evening Standard? Can I have your diary editor, please?” Jones hummed like an old fridge while hold music played in his ear. “Mike, you old dog, how are you doing? It’s Glynn Jones and I wonder if you can help me out. Were there any student RAG weeks or major charity events week commencing 11th April?”

The arguments in the back seat continued as Jones made a series of grunts and nods.

“OK, so nothing big. Have you heard anything of anyone doing a large print runs of parody newspapers?”

The back seat fell quiet as the two detectives became aware of the inspector’s conversation.

“You’ve heard of nothing at all? Thanks, Mike.” Jones turned to the two detectives in the back seat and gave a huge grin. “Oh, it’s just one of those silly bets we have at the station. You know how it is. See you soon. Bye”

Jones hung up.

“Well lads, it seems you need to get your thinking caps on.”

The theories that sprung from his companions became more fanciful and ludicrous to the pensive Jones. He sat back in his seat and let them flow over him.

“You have now reached your destination.” The sat-nav interrupted, adding. “Classy place!”

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