Friday 11 June 2010

LBW and Cromwell...

If you like literature or cricket, or history actually.... don't read this post! You have been warned. The dying of the hair from blond to brunette, has done nothing to remove the blondness from my soul...

At school I studied modern history; WW2 and the like. I seemed to have missed the Kings and Queens of the UK and, although I have, of course, heard of King Henry XIII, 1491-1547, he who founded a religion on that song D.I.V.O.R.C.E. I really have scant understanding of his English contemporaries. Interesting to me is the fact that Henry was having hissy-fits with his women, while the Italian Renaissance was in full swing: The greats like Leonardo, Michelangelo, Titian and Raphael creating masterpieces for the Catholic Church, while Henry picked a fight with a Pope.

I'm reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel at the moment and couldn't seem to reconcile the lead character, Cromwell, with the timeline of Henry. In the end I had to ask a very distinguished well-read, learned friend...

'So, Cromwell and the Roundheads, were they on Henry VIII's side or wot?'

Sheesh! ....She was more than kind.... Turns out the lead character Thomas Cromwell, is only a distant relative of bloody Oliver Cromwell! I was only a 100 years out! In the back of my head I knew that something was amiss. I should have asked my friend Google!!! So much less embarrassing.

Many years ago I was (not) watching cricket with husband and his mates.

'Oh, LBW!' They cried in unison.

The TV cut to black and white film footage of a 1960's game of cricket....and the commentator that BBC voice we all used to enjoy....sigh...

'Oh dear, oh dear, what a pity, LBW. Out for a billion...' or some such nonsense.

The film returned to present day and the boys in my sitting room calmed down. The only noise; the clunk from a ball being struck by wood and the hiss of a can being opened.

'Is LBW a famous old cricketing family?' I asked, imagining the same wooden bat, being handed down through the generations to the next fresh faced public school boy. As soon as I said it, I wished I could rewind.

I dread the cricket season because of that story, which is regurgitated often..... just thought I'd get in first this year!



  1. I love this tale. I grew up going to the cricket ground with my Grandpa as it was at the end of our road, so do adore cricket and can not wait till the boys are old enough to play

  2. Lovely- wow the music on your site made me jump!!!! Very cool....:)

  3. Try being American and understanding Wolf Hall Or cricket. I slugged through Wolf Hall and it all went in one ear and out the other. would have much preferred to read a good tale about Leo or Mike.

    As for cricket... let me just say that at one of the first matches that I ever went to, I cheered for my husband then was kindly asked to leave the green by the 'ladies tea' committee. "We don't do that sort of thing here, dear".

    So now if I have to go watch my son or the Rooster, I take a blanket and have a snooze but only if the sun is shinning. So really, I don't go very often.

  4. Thats so funny about the cricket, I am going to say that at one of the billion cricket games I have to watch this summer! Ha ha

  5. Had to look that one up! I can only imagine what the Brits must make of American sports talk. Well I guess if the number one spectator sport is 40 or 50 guys driving cars in a circle waiting for a wreck, what do you expect?

  6. You know, in my whole existence I've never understood cricket. It's all 702 over 5 and 14 out for...strawberries (or something) and men in white eating cucumber sandwiches and taking five days to play one little game. I once sat at Trent Bridge watching a game and I might as well have been trying to read War and Peace in Swahili. Having said that I'm great at baseball understanding. I get baseball, it makes logical sense. Cricket? No.

    But I didn't come here to say that, I came here to say something about royal families and incest and it all explaining prince Charles, but I forgot my train of thought so that'll have to do. :)

  7. Cricket. Brain immediately leaps to the famous radio commentators eating cake and taking about seagulls etc. (My Dad would have Radio 4 on in the car - never bowing to children's pressure to have anything else like that rubbish they call music etc like I blinkin' do). And I find that my cosy memories will always replay those plummy old boys' most famous commentary - ie 'The bowler's Holding, the batsman's Willey' - followed by at least 10 minutes of them squeakily trying to suffocate their giggles. This line HAS to be repeated by either Mr GPants or me any time we witness any cricket anywhere. And we wonder where our kids get their poo/bum/willy humour from. That's the essence of Englishness to me - not the cricket - the publicly giggling about willies.

    Similarly, on a recent Home Ed Gang ('educational'- us?) skip around The Tower of London, Mr GPants managed to convince all the kids within nudging distance that Henry VIII's unfeasibly large cod-piece was where he kept his sandwiches. Suggested fillings have been edited out.

  8. Ahh! Cricket the most well dressed athletes in the sports world.
    Good on you to get that story in before anyone else! Therefore you have dismissed the batheads in your living area! your own LBW!
    Wife (1) Mates (0)

    "Leg before wicket"

  9. TheMadHouse: Thank you. I am no less ignorant these days, but should improve as the 5yo comes of age!

    Rachel Nixon: Sorry to make you jump...I'm loving imposing my musical taste on all and sundry...hope the office folk don't get in trouble!!

    Mother Hen: OK soul sister! Weird game really, good to read the newspaper to... I must admit I am getting into Wolf Hall now, quite fancy T. Cromwell (strange girl me!)

    Justherdingcats: So pleased, now my words may live on, long after I'm brown bread and buried... passed from sniggering generation to disbelieving generation...'Was she really THAT thick?'...

    James: Oops! Yes sorry about the akro.. akrony.. initials and cricket-speak! Oh and the UK history lesson ...... All Greek to me too! My hubby is a BIG NFL fan... 1st night of Honeymoon in 1998 was spent in the Dolphins Stadium in Miami ..'nuff said!

    The Vegetable Assassin: Totally with you on the cricket stuff.... and I'm also with you on the Royals. 'Though I wouldn't swap them, hilarious family.

    MadameSmokinGun: You HAD to bring up willies.. sorry willeys .. didn't you? Henry's cod piece may as well have held his sarnies, for all the good his cricket bat did!

    Natural Selection: Good point: Wifey scores a googly!!! Yet another silly word


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