VORSPRUNG DURCH … KAPUTT

plane

It is reported that The Luftwaffe has so many of its aircraft waiting for spare parts or repairs that German pilots cannot even get any flying practice.

The Germans ought to be ashamed,
That their Air Force has just been named,
As quite incompetent for it,
Is not exactly fighting fit.

It bought some planes but they can’t fly,
And if you ask the reason why,
They’ll say they can’t go on a fahrt,
Because they’re lacking some spare part.

If they can’t fly they cannot fight,
Which some might think is quite all right,
Considering what people know,
Of things now eighty years ago.

But now in this new day and age,
When history has turned the page,
The Krauts are supposed to pull their weight,
So enemies they can berate.

But this they are not keen to do,
They do spend euros – just a few –
But when it come to their defence,
They don’t go in for much expense.

‘Vorsprung durch technik’ as they say,
But even if they think that way,
And though it’s still one of their aims,
It seems it doesn’t work for planes!

DIVINE PROVIDENCE

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It is reported that collections in York Minster are now being made with its electronic bronze collection plates and your contactless credit card.

If you’re in church I have to say,
You might expect some cash to pay,
And probably five pounds at least,
To pay for candles and the priest.

But often people don’t have cash,
(Perhaps small change went in the trash)
Then comes the moment that they hate,
As they see the advancing plate.

It’s getting closer, what to do?
With notes the pounds are not so few,
So some pay five and others nowt,
As brave ones try to tough it out.

Now with this new plate it’s just fine,
To pay towards the altar wine;
But anyone who thinks that they,
With just some pence can get away,
Although they’re now part of the flock,
Might be in for a nasty shock.

’Cos they’ll see as they wave their card,
The next decision is quite hard,
Because the buttons there to press,
Are likely to cause more distress:
In pounds they’re only five or ten,
So that’s back to the start again!

CHRISTMAS SPECIAL

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It is reported that a baby has been born in Bethlehem and attended by three kings.

I’m writing all these words by hand,
While sitting in the Holy Land,
About two thousand years ago,
But no-one knows exactly so,
Although the date is pretty rough,
I think it’s likely close enough.

I’m glad the date is out the way,
For back then on that Christmas Day,
A man and woman, so it’s said,
Were seeking, for the night, a bed.

They told the landlord they’d come far,
But when they asked him at the bar,
He said his rooms were rather full,
But round the back he had a bull,
That might perhaps his stable share,
If they would like to check round there.

The woman now looked none too sure,
About this offer from the brewer,
But if the beast were just a cow,
Well, maybe that would do for now.

The landlord said he’d go and check,
When he came back he said, “Oh heck!”
The bull, he said, had disappeared,
But as he had the stable neared,
He saw that there was not much space,
For others had now filled the place.

There was a cow, a donkey too,
Some flocks of sheep – just one or two,
And though the night was pretty dark,
Is seemed as full as Noah’s ark.

“We’ll take it,” said her husband Joe.
“The forecast is for sleet and snow.
The sheep seem quiet, do not bleat,
But have you anything to eat?”

The landlord said, “I’m not too sure,
But I’ve some bottles from the brewer;
The beer inside is dark not pale,
For it’s our special Christmas ale.”

The woman said, “That will do well,
My baby’s coming I can tell,
And after I have given birth,
Expect some changes on this earth.

But as for now the ale is fine,
Because you will find out with wine,
That although it’s as yet unknown,
From water he can make his own.”

So there they stayed that Christmas night,
They found the stable quite all right,
But next day the innkeeper said,
“I’m almost going off my head.

I didn’t sleep a wink all night,
That star up there was far too bright,
But what was right beyond the pale,
Was that some bloke the worse for ale,
At three o’clock gets up and sings,
A song that starts, ‘We are three kings’.

I really don’t know what to do,
They’re much more trouble, them, than you;
I’ve put them in my three best rooms,
But misery for me now looms,
With prospects that are pretty bleak,
’Cos they’ve booked in to stay next week.

They’ve all brought gifts, they say they are,
For me to keep behind the bar,
Until a fourth king should appear,
In Bethlehem or somewhere near,
And then the gifts they will bestow,
On this king that they barely know.

But I think we might play a trick,
Because these kings are pretty thick.
So I’ve a Christmas cracker here,
Just very slightly stained with beer,
It’s painted blue and red and brown,
And inside is a paper crown.

If your child will just put it on,
The kings will think he is the one,
To have the gifts as was foretold,
And one of them is solid gold.

So after that just pay your bill,
I’ll put it over by the till;
It might be big but do not bitch,
Because by then we’ll all be rich!

And as for my three guests from hell? –
We’ll all be shot of them as well!”

SHEAR IMPUDENCE

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It is reported that animal rights group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has declared that the Dorset village of Wool is an affront to sheep and have asked that the village be renamed Vegan Wool.

It sounds ridiculous, I know,
That somebody should have a go,
Complaining that a village name,
Should be changed so it’s not the same.

The name in question? It is Wool,
And though it’s all a load of bull,
They say the name is rather cheap,
Insulting, then, to Shaun the Sheep.

But villagers who this have heard,
Say that these folk have badly erred,
Because their facts have not been checked,
Perhaps through lack of intellect.

Despite appearances, the name,
Though as sheep’s fluffy coats the same,
Has no connection with, in fact,
A fleece which may be white or black.

In fact this short word means a well,
Back in the days when few could spel,
And since this fact has now been proved,
The Wool sign need not be removed.

But there’s a lesson in this rhyme,
For those who complain all the time:
If you want to a nuisance be,
Then first please check your history,
And if you find you are not right,
Try not to history re-write!

THE LEANING TOWER

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It is reported that the Leaning Tower of Pisa has straightened up a bit.

In Italy the tourist scene,
Revolves around that which does lean,
Folk flock there in their thousands and,
Discover that it’s built on sand.

More accurately, sands and clays,
And back in mediaeval days,
This mix was softer at one side,
Resulting in a sort of slide.

When I say ‘slide’ I do mean ‘tilt’,
Because the tower was jerry-built,
And when they reached floor number three,
With tilting there for all to see,
They stopped not to the footings shore,
And carried on past level four.

Eventually, as decades passed,
They reached the top, complete with mast,
And then in decades still to come,
It leant a bit more and then some.

Surprisingly, it didn’t fall,
Not just one bit, no not at all;
But in the end the main concern,
Was that the money it could earn,
Might finish, maybe or perhaps,
If Pisa’s landmark should collapse.

So first they tried to add some weight,
In tons, I think, some twenty-eight,
And, though there was a bit of flak,
The tower started leaning back.

But since then methods have improved,
And with more work the tower’s moved,
A bit more vertical, I think,
And that much further from the brink.

The work now finished was quite wise,
It sought the lean to stabilise,
And now it’s done there is no risk,
And tourist trade is rather brisk.

FRENCH COLLECTION

wellingtonnelson

It is reported that President Macron has offered to lend the Bayeux Tapestry to Britain as a gesture of cultural cooperation and goodwill (and a reminder of who won in 1066); that he is demanding a payment of £44 million for policing the Channel ports and, of course, that he wants us to pay an enormous Brexit bill in return for not much at all. What could Mrs May possibly offer him in return?

The French are all supposed to be,
Great experts in diplomacy,
And so they rarely give short shrift,
But come, instead, armed with a gift.

These gifts do get a lot of thought,
Are chosen ’cos they are the sort,
Of thing to take ones breath away,
But, in the end, to make us pay.

And there might be a lesson hid,
Reminding us of what they did,
When, in the past, they were our foe,
And won one battle as you know.

So Macron’s gift that he now brings,
Which may look like the best of things,
Should be regarded in that light –
Reminder of past Norman might.

No doubt his kind gift we accept,
Forgetting that he is adept,
At using such a gesture kind,
To imply that we shouldn’t mind,
To pay him many pounds and pence,
To, at Calais, erect a fence,
So migrants just cannot get through,
And end up living close to you.

What he is after, in exchange,
Is cash somewhere within the range,
Of fifty million – that’s pounds –
To pay his police to do their rounds,
At Calais through the night and day,
Which they’re supposed to anyway.

But two sides can play at this game,
With with other gifts, not quite the same,
But which remind him of the cost,
And who it was, in fact, that lost,
The last time our two nations fought.
Now here I don’t mean Agincourt,
But rather, as you likely knew:
Napoleon at Waterloo.

We should lend them that picture large,
Depicting Wellington in charge,
Of maybe history’s greatest feat:
That was Napoleon’s defeat.

Then, while we’re at it, as you know,
Our admiral, Horatio,
Also beat Boney by a mile.
At both Trafalgar and the Nile.

And if we would annoy some more,
Perhaps we could again restore,
The Eurostar, for which folk queue,
From St Pancras to Waterloo!

CHRISTMAS SPECIAL

Nativity-1863840__340

It is reported that a baby has been born in Bethlehem and attended by three kings.

I’m writing all these words by hand,
While sitting in the Holy Land,
About two thousand years ago,
But no-one knows exactly so,
Although the date is pretty rough,
I think it’s likely close enough.

I’m glad the date is out the way,
For back then on that Christmas Day,
A man and woman, so it’s said,
Were seeking, for the night, a bed.

They told the landlord they’d come far,
But when they asked him at the bar,
He said his rooms were rather full,
But round the back he had a bull,
That might perhaps his stable share,
If they would like to check round there.

The woman now looked none too sure,
About this offer from the brewer,
But if the beast were just a cow,
Well, maybe that would do for now.

The landlord said he’d go and check,
When he came back he said, “Oh heck!”
The bull, he said, had disappeared,
But as he had the stable neared,
He saw that there was not much space,
For others had now filled the place.

There was a cow, a donkey too,
Some flocks of sheep – just one or two,
And though the night was pretty dark,
Is seemed as full as Noah’s ark.

“We’ll take it,” said her husband Joe.
“The forecast is for sleet and snow.
The sheep seem quiet, do not bleat,
But have you anything to eat?”

The landlord said, “I’m not too sure,
But I’ve some bottles from the brewer;
The beer inside is dark not pale,
For it’s our special Christmas ale.”

The woman said, “That will do well,
My baby’s coming I can tell,
And after I have given birth,
Expect some changes on this earth.

But as for now the ale is fine,
Because you will find out with wine,
That although it’s as yet unknown,
From water he can make his own.”

So there they stayed that Christmas night,
They found the stable quite all right,
But next day the innkeeper said,
“I’m almost going off my head.

I didn’t sleep a wink all night,
That star up there was far too bright,
But what was right beyond the pale,
Was that some bloke the worse for ale,
At three o’clock gets up and sings,
A song that starts, ‘We are three kings’.

I really don’t know what to do,
They’re much more trouble, them, than you;
I’ve put them in my three best rooms,
But misery for me now looms,
With prospects that are pretty bleak,
’Cos they’ve booked in to stay next week.

They’ve all brought gifts, they say they are,
For me to keep behind the bar,
Until a fourth king should appear,
In Bethlehem or somewhere near,
And then the gifts they will bestow,
On this king that they barely know.

But I think we might play a trick,
Because these kings are pretty thick.
So I’ve a Christmas cracker here,
Just very slightly stained with beer,
It’s painted blue and red and brown,
And inside is a paper crown.

If your child will just put it on,
The kings will think he is the one,
To have the gifts as was foretold,
And one of them is solid gold.

So after that just pay your bill,
I’ll put it over by the till;
It might be big but do not bitch,
Because by then we’ll all be rich!

And as for my three guests from hell? –
We’ll all be shot of them as well!”