Friday, 2 November 2007

Idle's Edwardian Manners, Part 2

When it became clear that the Second World War was going to take much time, treasure, and manpower, civil servants were dispatched from Whitehall and county councils to have a quiet word with the bigger landowners and stately homeowners, to address their staffing levels.

One such official made a visit to Chatsworth and spent a morning counting the number of gardeners, footmen, gamekeepers and chefs. Before lunch, he had an audience with the Duke.

"We thought" began the chap from the county council, "that you might be able to reduce the number of gamekeepers, Your Grace".

"Bother" said the Duke. "Oh, very well"

"And perhaps one less man in the kitchen garden" said the official.

"Has Birtwhistle said he could spare one? I suppose so, then"

"And one less pastry chef, we thought" said the public servant.

"Dammit all" said the Duke, "can't a chap have a biscuit?"


electro-kevin said...

Enjoyed that aristocratic humour.

Churchill was in the bath (I may get this a little wrong)and a minister came in to advice him that one of his MPs had been caught buggering a rent boy in Hyde park. Churchill mused and replied "Good God, it's minus ten out there !" he smirked and then added in characteristic bulldog tone "Makes one proud to be British."

CityUnslicker said...

I think this could have an easy modern re-work.

Sometime in 2008...Badger Darling despatches his minions from the treasury up to Humberside...

In the local council office, they explain budgets are tight:

- could you do with one less five a day counsellor
- There seem to be a few spare class 3 change management assitant executives too

We are poor and sold all our gold, please can you release these people back to the private sector!

Scroblene said...

Lovely Idle!

His Lordship woke one morning feeling decidedly frisky.

He called his butler and said "Ayscoughe, I find I have an erection'!

The butler tactfully replied 'Oh well done sir, shall I fetch her Ladyship'?

His Lordship replied, 'Good God no, bring the Rolls round, this is a London job'!

Newmania said...

I went to to Chatsworth and heard the tales of the war years , where they all slept and everything . I thought it was rather thrilling.

When you visit the room where Churchill was born at Blenheim they play ( sniffle ) Elgar or something and stirring speeches . I was obliged to blow my nose and harrumph.....

Sadly I cannot think of amusing aristocrat related story . If only PG Wodehouse had said the same thing whilst interned.

The Hitch said...

The duke was a notorious smack and coke head, I kid you not.
He used to employ a thug to carry it about for him.
Hitch knows this as his grandfather was detailed to nail him in posession.
he failed.

Newmania said...

Did you get your name from Jerome K Jerome ?

idle said...

No, newms. It was an ironic nickname given to me during a brief industrious spell in my working life.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

can't a mermaid have a new post? Oh Idle we miss your erudition! C'mon!

idle said...

ok, ok. The plutocrats are dominating my every waking hour. tonight perhaps.

Newmania said...

No, newms. It was an ironic nickname given to me during a brief industrious spell in my working life

Well do read Three men in boat if you haven`t you would love it ..I think