Written by Erskin Quint
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Wednesday, 22 February 2012

image for Selected Ridiculous Letters To The Editor Some Letters, Yesterday

Dear Sir,

I note that Paddington Bear will appear at Dalemain country house near Ullswater on the 25th and 26th of February, where he will visit The World's Original Marmalade Awards & Festival.

He won't, though, not really. Because he doesn't actually exist, does he?

Some soft-headed twerp buys his idiotic wife a teddy bear, then decides to write a book about an imaginary bear. It takes all of 10 days to craft this work of art, so it isn't exactly what you might call Dostoevsky. As we might expect, this is tripe every bit as soppy and vacuous as the ninny and his wife.

This is smug, sentimental bourgeoise drivel of the first water. Here we are invited to imagine a Peruvian bear sent to England because its Aunt has gone into the Home For Retired Bears in Lima. A Peruvian bear that can speak English and that loves to eat marmalade.

Peru? Africa was rejected, apparently, as there are no bears there, unlike Peru, who can boast the spectacled bear among its treasures.

Let us take a bearing. The spectacled bear being germane to our tale, perhaps we might fancy Paddington Bear to bear a passing resemblance to one of these.

Alas, our hopes are dashed by the illustrations that garnish the insipid broth of our text. Sadly, we discover the malign influence of deadly suburbia.

It may be that I am in error. Perhaps the spectacled bear of Peru really is a kind of dwarf biped bear, all nose, child's raincoat and idiot's hat, bearing a suitcase, speaking like a refugee from a gravy advertisement, and perambulating away on its hind legs in search of marmalade.

Perhaps there are still families in England who have a housekeeper.

These books are staggeringly popular.

Meanwhile, I caught this morning morning's minion, a missive from a publisher, the 57th to reject my novel Sun Day, a Joycean stream of consciousness fable set in the Inca Kingdom of Cusco and written entirely in the runasimi language of the Incas.

Ah, but 'tis after all an error of judgement on my part. I ought to have written about an exiled English-speaking Peruvian marmalade-eating dwarf biped bear in a hat who is adopted by a family with a housekeeper.

Yours faithfully,

Austin Cambridge,
2 Pacariqtambo Villas,
Tipperary


Dear Sir,

who is the seventh beatle? Many days I work then rest. On the mantlepiece a shilling saved shines in the gaslamp's ugly brass glare. Are the cupboards bare again, Wilfred?

Ho, yes, and we shall have eggs and butter. Nary a simnel cake escapes her ministry. She goes, again against the April breeze, to catch gooseberries in a wicker pinafore.

These are the latter days, of black toast and cheese-water, when vicars fight to the death, naked among the nettle-groves. Who is the seventh beatle?

Build us then a goose-hunter's barge, sail us to the very reed-beds at the end of the world, where we discover our own deathmasks among the discarded nest-materials of the Hooper Swans.

Who is the seventh beatle?

Yours,

James Corden,
Crewe Junction,
Babylon-on-Sea


Dear Sir,

I have been researching our histories of Britain and her peoples, and I would be glad to share with your readerships an instance of my theories which I posit, having completed my researches, for the time being.

Firstly, to take up the cudgels once more in the vexed question of King Caractacus, Chieftain of the Catuvellauni tribe in the first century - who says it was the first century?

Leaving aside this question as to the labelling of century this or century that, we arrive at the thorny issue of the tactics employed by King Caractacus in his battle with the fledgling Roman Church of Pope Cadillac IV.

It is commonly supposed that Caractacus foiled the designs of Cadillac IV - who was intent on erecting a replica of the Vatican at Stevenage - by the expedient of guerilla tactics.

But I am here to confront this. I have it from the Vulgata Sacroiliac of the 5th century Phoenician trader Convolvulus that the gorilla was not exported from the Thracian Archipelago until at least the 4th century, when the balsa rafts of King Thermos plied the Adriatic.

Thus the use of the gorilla in any deployments by the Catuvellauni is obviated and bereft as a figment of revisionist historians such as Pubis of Rheims, or Cardamom the Levantine.

I hope that this is of interest to such of your readerships as retain a healthy keenness for the truths of our heritage and value the humble efforts of one who would preserve the backbone of our weal in the face of the new barbarisms.

Yours,

Hereward Middlemass
Magna Carta Sidings
Bombay

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