February 12, 2001
Sir Charles Grandiose
The verdant hills--the grassy vales,
I think no other landscape, hands-down,
Can rival beauteous, lovely Blandsdown.
The tranquil nights, the lustrous days.
Protecting what there is to be seen
To keep the land forever green.
The fruits of mother earth, so free!
Ocelot, panda, hump-backed whale
Each rare creature has a tale to tell.
We must preserve them, two by two.
O baby seal, so soft and fair!
At least preserve a breeding pair.
Without a downy sealskin coat?
What would generations future think
If extinction claimed the mink?
Looks good in handbags or on the floor.
If we let it meet its doom,
How will the future furnish the smoking room?
We must the species promise to save
So that future dinners may boast
A crispy, succulent eagle roast.
Each elephant has a lovely tusk.
If killed all were upon a spree,
How would we get more ivory?
Heed my cry, oh ev'ry nation!
Endangered species of forest and grasses,
Must be saved for the upper classes.
In selling goods for an upper income bracket.
Thus for another week, verbose,
One e'er remains, Charles Grandiose
A Young Man of Quality writes:
I'm a young fellow with a certain social standing, if you know what I mean. Summer home in the Hamptons. Apartment in the city, near the park, fantastic view. Funny little job that I have because I want to, not because I have to. I'm sure you appreciate the distinction.
I've met a girl that I think I like. Pretty thing. Took her home to Mummy and Dad for the weekend. They think she's a bit of a climber, out for the family goods and name. Truth to tell, she rather common, and spent the entire weekend talk talk talking about how nice was the cottage and the silver and the pool and the servants. That kind of thing.
As I said, she's a nice enough girl, but is that enough? Can I train her to become more like--well, more like me? Or is it a hopeless case?
Sir Charles replies:
My good fellow,
It is the age-old question of star-crossed lovers, is it not?
Take one's advice, however. One might take one of the Lady Felicia's female terriers, give it a bit of a bath, dress it up in fine frills and a bonnet, and seat it at the dinner table. It might look like a lady, for a moment.
But the moment it starts opening its mouth and yapping and lunging after the roast as if it's never eaten before, you know that underneath all the feminine fripperies she's still a bitch at heart.
With a word to the wise, one remains,
gadzooks, sirrah, methinketh thou art a prettie snyvelling knave. Prove thy manhood and accept my challenge to a Thibetan jousting match on the roof of the rackets courts at Eton. The match to be best of one toss. Bring Penelope, she tickleth my fancy. A murrain upon thee, varlet, thou art not fit to scrub the privies at Boodle's.
Sir Charles replies:
My dear and faithful readers,
There are moments in one's life when one is given a gift that one cherishes for all time. A sense, perhaps, that one's life work has not been in vain. A feeling that, through hard work and utter determination, one has been making a change in this world, a change for the better. One receives confirmation that despite whatever doubts one may have, one has succeeded in one's duty to fill every dark corner with the light of reason and high standards. Yes, indeed, there are such moments in life, and every one is a precious jewel to be hoarded and cherished for time immemorial.
This, my fine readers, is not one of them.
Yawning and tossing a wadded-up ball of paper in the dustbin,
Lady Naimh writes:
I am a young girl, lissome and fair, who is one of your most devoted readers. (And as I have heard, our number exceeds even the number of ill-made diet meals the Duchess has choked down for money.) Your every word is like a caress upon my soul, every turn of phrase a comfort to my eyes, your very visage speaks of all that is manly to me.
All the men I meet who are of my own age (a youthful looking eighteen) seem to be unable to get past my long, golden locks and (though I grow crimson to confess it) curvaceous form, and frilly dresses to see the woman beneath.
However, I believe you could.
I know that is my curse to be forever shorn of your presence, as you are most enamored of the Lady Felicia, (who is a most worthy wife, no doubt, for you to have chosen her) hence my question. How, where, can a comely girl such as myself find a man as wonderful, as tasteful, as sweet and gentlemanly as yourself?
Sir Charles replies:
My dear Lady Naimh,
It is a pity that there are not more men such as oneself. What a jolly time it would be, if every young girl could have a titled, privileged, and devilishly handsome chap like Sir Charles Grandiose for her bosom friend and boon companion.
Well, my dear, now one can. Thanks to the excellent toymakers of Grandiose Enterprises, Ltd., every young woman can now own the Sir Charles Grandiose Posable Action Figure Doll. Yes, the young third-world children labouring for three pence an hour have produced the finest Posable Action Figure Doll available on either side of the Atlantic Ocean. Pull the string and he says one of several phrases:
Accessories for the Sir Charles Grandiose Posable Action Figure Doll are sold separately. Be the first on your block to own the Sir Charles Grandiose Portable Epergne, suitable for placement in the Dining Room of the Sir Charles Grandiose Jolly Weston Super-Mare Beach House. Collect the Sir Charles Grandiose Rolls Royce Camper and have your very own personal Sir Charles Grandiose Posable Action Figure Doll enjoy breakfast in the great outdoors with your own personal Anita Manceau-Baddeley Posable Action Figurette! (Boas, Platform Shoes, and Lycra Capri Pants sold separately.)
So, Lady Naimh. Look for oneself in the finer toy and Posable Action Figure Doll shops near you.
Sighing gratefully for the miracle of modern sweatshops, one