Thursday 21 April 2022

Many Impertinent Questions & A Dozen Mere Trifles

Even NASA must have looked for answers to impertinent questions.

Have you ever wondered, Dear Reader, if you may have crossed paths with Your Correspondent?  How could you know?

Maybe we stood on the same train platform at Frankfurt airport, you en route to Milan, me waiting for the following train to Prague, perhaps? 

Or did we bob about on foam noodles in the same swimming pool of a timeshare apartment complex on the Big Island of Hawai'i? 

Or perhaps we just passed on the escalators in David Jones department store in Sydney, me on the way up to Haberdashery, you on the way down to Small Electricals. 

Or, more likely, you overheard me Carrying On about a pet topic on the adjacent bench in a park, anywhere really. Stranger things have happened. 

Is it not time, then, to acknowledge that we've known each other long enough now for me to come out of my customary shell, cosy as it is, and so shed some anonymity? 

A flyer advertising long-haired women, to be sure.
But how to tell whom here is Pipistrello?

Forthwith, I shall provide you with some trifles (beyond the unhelpful description of tall, slim, greying long brown hair, spectacles & presently clocking in at age 56) that may help to identify me in the wild, so to speak:

  • I do not drive a car: The woman [insert unhelpful description above] shaking her fist at you as you sail through a pedestrian crossing without stopping could be me**.
  • I have a peculiar sense of humour: The only person (read: woman) laughing in the darkened cinema at odd times could be me.
  • I am allergic to horses: If you own a harras of horses and it is rustled in the night, it won't be me.
  • I was once expelled from a packed lecture hall in front of the other First Year Pure Mathematics students for the mistaken Crime of Flirting (!!): If you recite Miss Ann Elk's Theory on Brontosauruses, with emphasis on the throat clearing, at a woman who then weeps with uncontrollable laughter such that she needs to be removed from a 1000-seat public forum, that could be me. Nota bene: I have more recently discovered Mr. Frank Key (dec.), formerly of Hooting Yard, and believe the same result would have occurred if the interwebs had been at our disposal in 1984.
  • I have convict ancestry: If you have as a skeleton in your family's closet an Anthony Steel or a Margaret Irwin, themselves expelled from Ireland in the early 1800s for Crimes requiring Transportation, we are probably related.
  • I have Swedish ancestry: If you have in your family tree one Augustus Lindberg AB, who may have jumped ship from the barque Choice in Sydney in 1879 (sailing from the Port of Takis in Lithuania, bien sûr), we, too, are probably related.
  • I once travelled on the Concorde: The woman weeping silently behind you on a long and tedious subsonic aeroplane journey could be me.
  • I have never been rescued from a crisis except in the medical sense: If you are a fireman and you carry a woman fireman-wise down a ladder during a conflagration and she perhaps babbles to you that on a scale of 1 to 10 she is not sure if the titanium in her head will set off a metal detector, it could me me.
  • I might occasionally make things up: The woman overheard at the table next to you in a café reminiscing about the time she kissed a (Lesser European) Prince, might make you pause to wonder both if it could be me and is this is one of those occasions? (How will you ever know? ...)
  • I am law-abiding to a fault: The woman who flashes a fake Sheriff's badge at you after having first shaken her fist at you as you sail through a pedestrian crossing without stopping could be me.
  • I believe exceptions always prove the rule: viz.:
  • I once (accidentally) travelled from England to Holland and back without a passport: If you work for Interpol, I shall not divulge my home address.

This dozen mere bagatelles should be enough to be getting on with as a handy taxonomic guide to identifying Pipistrello when out and about. So, if you think you have spotted me, don't be shy and do say Hullo!

* These so-called little known facts are quite likely to have been spoken of before around these pages, or will sometime in the future.

** Both you and I know this is a mere fiction for that would never happen when you are behind the wheel.

Image credits: 1: via: Mr. P but long forgotten and thus unattributable, possibly NASA; 2: Nathaniel Russell's Fake Fliers

Sunday 17 April 2022

Easter Tidings ...


... of the fantastic sort, Dear Reader.

Pipistrello x

Image credit: Hybridizer

Friday 1 April 2022

April Fooled

Have you ever been done like a dinner on April Fools' Day, Dear Reader? Both Mr. P & I fell one year hook, line and sinker for a very amusing spoof magazine feature on a Nordic ice cream tycoon and his family. But hunting the interwebs for delicious evidence to share has left me empty-handed and now wondering if I dreamt the whole thing. Perhaps this is the key to being properly April Fooled?

Despite spending an unseemly amount of time today perusing archived 1990s trashy magazine covers seeking editions around the beginning of April and only becoming reacquainted with the likes of Claudia Schiffer (so many times) and Jane Seymour (so many children) and 90s-headlining royal covergirls in their prime, Mr. P reassures me that he, too, can visualise the whole glorious thing. So we can't have imagined the magazine spread. But it does seem to have suspiciously vanished from said archives.

We've all pored over the occasional Exclamatory(!) guilty-pleasure magazine in the dentist's waiting room (and, ahem, purchased the occasional copy with an alluring cover) so you can picture for yourself the glossy images splashed across several pages with their breathless yet almost tongue-in-cheek captions:

The Family Portrait comprises a handsome middle-aged tycoon with a nonsense Nordic name posing in his lavish mansion, his sullen and beautiful blonde adolescent scions from a first marriage surrounding his baronial throne, his 20-something sultry and beautiful blonde second wife at his side and at their feet their sweetly blonde twins.

Subsequent Home Interior photos have the trophy wife draped provocatively across furniture, pouting at the camera in a new ensemble for each shot, the sulky adolescents glowering at the camera in the background. The accompanying editorial sings the praises of the brilliant tycoon, gushes admiringly over his beauteous family, the exquisite taste of the home, the furnishings, the fashion labels. It was all so utterly convincing and a brilliant parody of the typical spread found within their pages any other week.

And we fell for it. For an embarrassingly long time. Maybe even for weeks. I can't remember when the penny dropped but it finally did. But in the meantime, I did even tell people, sensible adults, that the Scandinavian millionaire founder of an ice-cream empire had wittily named his twins Ben & Jerry.  

Image credit: via Google

Bats In The Belfry