The Amateur Gentleman’s New Year Review


Greetings, Tiger devotees, and a prosperous New Year

To commence, one has sadly to report that one is once again dans le chenil, so to speak, following one’s remarks regarding young ladies (I must not call them ‘fillies’!) attempting to play cricket, to which Lady B-P (no mean sportswoman herself) has taken extreme umbrage and administered oneself severe chastisement, to the extent that the covers are back on the wicket again, with no prospect of play in the foreseeable future. I fear my dear lady spouse is becoming something of a suffragette (she certainly makes oneself suffer!).

Consequently, one has had to take one’s gentlemanly pleasures elsewhere. Fortunately it has been the festive season and one has been carousing in some abundance. Firstly, there came Lord James’ bash at the Savoy – brandy and cigars, plus a sufficiency of jazz salt and debs – followed by cocktails and a few hands of baccarat at Boodles with Binky Bollinger and Fruity Fanshaw-Fiennes.

Tigers slightly past their best at Lord James’ bash


Thence came the Tiger Eleven’s Christmas convocation and Annual Congress. Lamentably, this was poorly attended, with several members truant, the intelligence upon which had been notified as follows:

Busy on superhero duties saving the world (1); engaged in a lucrative narcotics deal south of the Thames (1); twanged a pigrope running to get to the meeting on time (1); detained at London Aerodrome on smuggling charges (1); attending a pensioners’ outing (1); stranded in Edinburgh having boarded the incorrect railway train (1); prostrate in an opium den (1); changing nappies (1); on a tandem holiday in the Andes (1).

This was disgraceful and does not auger well for the coming season. Worse still, the evening proceeded in almost total darkness with cacophonic jazz music blaring from recesses in the walls. Little of consequence occurred (after Mister Wright-Herbert’s opening address had induced a soporific trance on the audience) until the Professor proposed a fixture twixt the Tiger Eleven and Finchley Fillies (sorry, Ladies) at the Wynchgate, for which he was quite rightly hooted out of the room to much derision!

As is the yuletide tradition, Bartington Hall once again opened its doors to give the poor and needy a festive troughing, this year welcoming the followers from nearby Norfolk Wanderers Association Football Club, with whom the Cannoneers recently fought a worthy tie. This did not proceed well. They are led by some old harridan who bakes cakes for a living and, having over indulged in her cooking sherry, is inclined to wander on to the field of play during oranges and berate the assembly through a loudhailer. In addition, the sidelines of their playing arena are peppered with concrete pits full of snakes and sharp stakes into which the visiting players are thrown by the home side when the arbiter’s attention is elsewhere. Worse still, they are what is termed a ‘family club’, which I comprehend to be a euphemism for all and sundry being related to one another, most probably in an Illegal fashion! One recalls much thinning of the blood among our neighbours at nearby Totteringham Manor, until one day some poor wretch popped out with twelve toes, two little chaps and a visage resembling a porker’s rear quarters!

Phileas Hillbilly

On a lighter note, there has recently been much amusement among one’s chums in the Woolwich pound stalls over the demise of the hideous cad who calls himself The Mahdi, leader of the Blueshirts from the Dog Track, given the bums rush by Mister Mosley following a number of reverses and embarrassing incidents, and replaced by a koala bear, remarkably resembling Blueshirts fanatic Mister Phileas Hillbilly. Observing The Mahdi’s discomfort and discord at recent Association fixtures has kept one beguiled for some time – Quos deus vult perdere prius dementat* – if one recalls one’s Latin correctly. Hopefully he will now drive his omnibus in a northerly direction, park it on
the likes of Newton Heath or West Gorton, and see

Gus the koala

them demoted in similar fashion.



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