Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Barging In

It's a lovely time to be alive in the beautiful Kingdom of Northumbria; this Cat is certainly full of the joys of spring. After all, there's a lot to be cheerful about: thanks to the Global Warming shamans, clowns and mountebanks like His Holiness Archbishop Georges Moonbat, we've been enjoying the wettest drought since the beginning of recorded time (or is it the last one? - I forget...); Dagwald Caedmeron - the Supreme Allied Zookeeper of the Tree/Liberationist Alliance Administration - has been enjoying some interesting and challenging political opportunities amid the customary allegations of corruption, sleaze and nosebag centred around his industrious colleagues; he and his chum Oswine have also been accused of being elitist poor little rich boys by a vituperative female politico; Edweird the Milliner has been scoring his usual astonishing political fantasy victories, and Clegge - as ever - is nowhere to be seen. Oh - and the soothsayers Beeby See and her venomous pal Guardy-Ann have been droning incessantly about the imaginary evils of the growing empire of Prince Ruprecht Evil-Merodach, whose soothsaying minions have supplied the Northumbrian population with entertaining spicy gossip, revelations and tripe about the political classes, who are getting somewhat cheesed off about being constantly exposed to the glare of the public eye. Same old same old.

But what makes my day is the forthcoming excitement about the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) Games - and the imminent nine hundredth anniversary of the accession of King Alhfrith to the coveted Northumbrian throne. It's so exciting! I've already seen people running aimlessly around with blazing torches - but what puzzles me is why they've been lit in the full glare of the spring sunshine; I suspect they're practising for the synchronised arson event. We're expected to win a medal this time...

Today - to kindle the excitement even more, the Supreme Monarch - assisted and accompanied by his loyal consort, the potty-mouthed Queen Hillida - went to the quayside in Yorvik to grace the launching of the new Great Royal Barge on the River Ouse. This colossal longship is going to be central to the celebrations in the month of June, and it will be laden with the refinements and comforts to which the Sovereign is customarily accustomed, and it will be heavily armed by special squads of homeopathic bowmen and swordsmen. When the festivities are over, the craft - contrary to logic and popular expectation - won't be pressed into the service of the defence of the Realm; it will be buried with full pomp, ceremony and business at Sutton Hoo, where it's expected to cause future archaeologists to go into fits of ecstasy and thing.

I was delighted to hear what the new boat is going to be called. With the breaking of the flagon of mead over its bows (a long established maritime superstition), he's named it Glorianus. The name has quite a pretty ring to it, doesn't it?

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