Hello. Again. England. Sorry. About. The dramatic. Pauses. Geoffrey. Rush. Is. Staring. Into. One’s. Microphone.
One year into the German onslaught, one is gratified to say that one’s country is still pulling together rather onesomely. One’s wife is thanked warmly by the majority of Londoners as she tiptoes through the rubble bestowing toffees upon them. A few rotters in the East End apparently took offense at that marvelous woman’s finery, and caused a scene. Steady on, fellows! One doesn’t pass judgment on your rags even though Lord Hawsley from the Unflappably Chipper Office says the Germans are leading on the sartorial front. (But not to worry!) One would accompany one’s wife on these “appearances” only one finds the whole thing positively loathsome and demeaning. Cheering crowds are all very well for the PM but an English monarch prefers the company of animals.
Please forgive Mr. Churchill his unseemly behavior. Posterity shan’t allow this rather odd egg to upstage his monarch with those wireless outbursts of his. Some of it was really quite rum: “We shall fight them on the beaches?” Winston, really! It puts one in mind of a sordid scene on Margate pier, and as such is talk unbecoming an officer of the Royal Navy. Still, now is not the time to correct language usage. There are more pressing wrongs that one has the moral imperative to address. One is speaking, of course, of Mr. Churchill’s lisp.
Now, more than ever, this nation must concentrate on conquering speech impediments with novel treatments. One has therefore confined Mr. Churchill to Dr. Rush’s secret warehouse surgery until such time as he has faced his personal Dunkirk. Winston shall never speak into a radio microphone again, unless Dr. Rush is on the other side of it, contorting his face in an encouraging fashion.
To those brave Englishmen on the front lines, take courage in the memory that one oneself commanded a thirty-five-thousand-ton battleship during the Second Zulu War. One shall never forget leaving one’s suite to inspect the bombardment of the tribe’s position. There were one’s chaps, eating bubble and squeak and drinking ginger ale in a most sanguine fashion, oblivious to the massive ordinance raining out of the cannons beside them. “It’s ruddy great to be an Englishman, Sir,” said my gilly, quite out of turn. “Kindly address one as ‘Sire,’ and pronounce it to rhyme with ‘fear’ or one will have you keelhauled, you impertinent oaf,” one replied. And yet the gilly’s sentiment on the deck of the HMS Crew Sin has some truth to it. God Save One!
One was called to the throne in a most irregular manner, and of that one is constantly mindful. One’s brother’s great folly was his failure to cast Mrs. Simpson aside after their dalliance. Had Edward only done that, this nation might quite easily have come to terms with Mr. Hitler, avoiding all this nasty bombing business. Rest assured: courtesans at one’s court are afforded only the courtesies they deserve, if one knows what one means.
One faces the bombs alongside one’s subjects on a daily basis, of course. One was only two wings away when a bomb landed on the Buckingham Palace entrance hall yesterday. An operation was required to save one’s left footman. Sacrifices must come from all quarters, and particularly from the servants’ quarters. Buckingham Palace staff are no longer permitted to feed on leftovers from the royal table, and must donate them to the war effort instead. Soldiers in Burma may look forward to the arrival of sherry-trifle remainders in brown envelops bearing the royal seal of approval. Neither has one’s own family been spared. One flew into one of one’s famous rages the other evening at dinner when a misinformed maidservant brought out the mango chutney in a cut-glass bowl. Give one a common jar, as instructed, girl. One will simply not put up with needless excess at this time.
For one empathizes terribly with those who go without. One once had a cruel nanny who fed one nothing but oatmeal for an entire Whitsun term. One was barely thirteen at the time and might well have perished had one’s mater not found the woman out during the biannual tour of the nursery known as the “changing of the nappy.”
Some have said one should talk more about reports of death camps in Europe, atrocities in Poland and so on. Simply ghastly idea. One is trying to put a happy face on the whole thing, after all.
No, one is quite sure that one’s elocutionary example will suffice to defeat Mr. Hitler. After all, if one can read a speech into a microphone while Dr. Rush is pulling those absurd faces in the background, surely one’s boys can go out and defeat the armies of Fascism. Might one say they are making a meal of it? Never has so much been made of so little by so many.