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COLUMNIST.

Byline: DAVID BANKS

THE Lawnmower Salesman has had woman trouble before (not to mention the trouble women have had with Lawnmower) but this time it looked like he'd gone too far.

"I came in from walking the sheep," said Billy the Kid, "and there he was, looking guilty and sitting taking coffee with my wife."

Nothing strange in that, surely, I told Bill.

"I thought nothing of it," said Bill, shaking his head. "Until I came in for my afternoon tea and there he was again, having tea and crumpets with Janet and buttoning up his breeks!

"I was on the point of manhandling him out the door when he confessed what they had been up to: letting out my riding jodhpurs so they would fit him..." And there, laid bare for all to see, was Lawnmower's greatest mortal sin: vanity.

He talks the talk so he likes to walk the walk (or, as in this case, ride with pride).

When he's not demonstrating his ability to produce bowling green stripes with his Qualcast push mower or make three-point turns astride his Honda ride-on, Lawnmower plays the gentleman's part like he's the Chris Ewbank of the county shows. All he needs is the old champ's monocle.

He joined the racing syndicate last year and turned up in the parade ring at Musselburgh in hacking jacket, brown titfer and canary yellow waistcoat.

Having taken up golf he appeared at Goswick in flapping plus fours and a Pringle sweater.

And naturally it was plus twos, flat cap and waxed jacket as soon as his first shooting invite arrived.

And the jodhpurs? Well, he's fallen for a woman who's a big wheel in the horsey world and who obviously expects Lord Lawnmower to join the festivities when the College Valley Hunt sets off from the Red Lion on Boxing Day.

And to perform at that level of three-ring circus a show pony like Lawnmower simply MUST be wearing hunting pink (which, of course, he doesn't own).

So that's how Billy the ex-Coldstreamer found - twice in one day - his drink-and-dominoes pal in what looked suspiciously like 'the act'. Naturally, there was an innocent explanation but Janet, a good and proper woman, was outraged: First, at the very idea that she would be unwise enough to take up with so vain a coxcomb as the Lawnmower and, second, that her boy Billy would entertain so tasteless a notion.

"He came round this morning to borrow your riding gear," she sternly reproved her husband.

"The jacket was too short and the joddies too small, so I told him I'd put an elastic gusset in the waistband and he could come back and collect them this afternoon.

"Anyway," she added. "I told him that given the size of his big head the hat would always be three sizes too small."

Well, she got THAT right.

I AM reliably informed that what soured Australia against the cream of English cricket was the exchange at Adelaide Immigration when our Ashes touring party arrived.

I came in for my tea and "Any of you blokes got a criminal record?" asked the official.

there he was again, having tea Much puzzlement all round before one of the opening batsmen and crumpets with Janet replied: "I wasn't aware we still NEEDED one."

buttoning up his A GOLFING fourball at The Hirsel held up behind two lady members decided to ask if they might play through.

breeks!

"Perhaps you'd pop down and ask them, John," said Angus. "Bit embarrassing for me as the lady on the left of the fairway is my wife and the woman on the right is my mistress."

"Certainly," agreed John, returning a few minutes later with a stony face.

"Didn't they agree to make way for our fourball?" demanded Angus.

"Oh, the women agreed all right," said John. "It's just a bloody small world, that's all!" Still, they DID get to play through...

david_banks@hotmail.com

I came in for my tea and there he was again, having tea and crumpets with Janet and buttoning up his breeks!
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Dec 20, 2013
Words:681
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