Monday, January 25, 2010

Dear Tom Jones

I am always telling my children and grandchildren to write thank you letters. After a weekend in Hawkes Bay last year I thought I had better practice what I preach .

Dear Tom Jones,
I am writing to thank you for your appearance at the Mission concert in Napier. I was tempted to suggest that yours was a brief appearance, given the arrival of at least six pairs of ladies knickers upon the stage during your performance. I did notice that a lady fan took the opportunity to dispatch one of her high heels in your direction. (Was it the face lift or were you genuinely surprised). Do not get too excited regarding this fresh demonstration of adoration, a hundred years ago audiences threw their hats, fifty years ago it was gloves and handkerchiefs, two decades ago it was panties and it appears that your stage career is now, sadly, reaching the point of no return…shoes. Of course it may well have been a case of misunderstanding. Let’s face it anybody wanting to rock to the sounds of a 68 year old may act young, even feel young but will be suffering some of those ageing woes such as hardness of hearing. ‘Try throwing your shoe’ was in fact her friend saying ‘I’m going for the loo’.
I need to put your mind at rest regarding the naming of your band. Although it is unwise to attempt to introduce anyone who’s name you do not know, especially before an audience of 27,000 people, we have all experienced that temporary loss of memory. Do not be concerned with your embarrassing faux pa. I am convinced that the trombonist, who’s name you did actually forget (in front of 27,000, or was it 28,000 people) will always be remembered for the simple reason that right there on the stage in front of …you know.. he was allowed to remind you what his name actually is, so good on you Tom for giving old whatsisname, the trombonist, his moment of fame.
I am wondering what you thought of the other acts, sometimes they can outshine the main event. I thought Annie Crummer and the group ‘The Cats Away’, were excellent. However when Jimmy Barnes came on, as the warm up singer, something told me that the cats had come back again and they were doing terrible things to my lug ‘oles. Still, old Jimmy is a grand old rocker and he did not have a hernia as he screeched out some great old hits. I thought I perceived a new instrument sound but realised it was the reverberation of creaking bones as baby boomers began shaking their booties and popping their corks. I will say, Jimmy really did warm us up and I was particularly impressed with the announcement at the end of his performance that Mr Barnes would be available for autographs. I was going to give him mine but by now we had cracked open our second bottle of Merlot and I was concerned that if I fell over in the vineyard none of my intoxicated friends would be mission me and I would finish up in next years vintage.
I must say, Tom, I was intrigued by your very attractive gray shirt that gradually turned a sort of dual gray and black during your performance, my wife loves that wet look. She almost passed out when you gave us a fleeting glimpse of your chest. Personally I could not comprehend what all the fuss was about until I read on the net that those chest hairs of yours are insured for $3.5million. (My grandkids are fascinated with my long hairy eyebrows, do you think State would consider a small policy, say around thirty quid).
Now Tom it’s not that I think you are passed it…oh.. No, no, no.. there is still a bit of that old spark in your performance but sadly you were not exactly ‘burning down the house.’ It pains me to say, you are no longer a ‘sex bomb.’ The bomb bit is still there but ‘why, why, why, Delilah,’ don’t you call it a day. You’ve made $170 plus million and ‘it’s not unusual’ to be loved by someone when you are worth that sort of coin. I admire your resilience and fortitude Tom but now is the time to retire to ‘the green green grass of home’. If you insist on continuing your career and trying to do that sexy walk thing….well Tom, without wanting to be unkind, to put it bluntly, Mary is not going to be there to greet you when you step down off the train.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

'The curse of the stolen hog bristles'

We have all heard of skeletons in the cupboard. Well prepare to discover all your ancestors heinous crimes courtesy of a web site instigated by the famous Old Bailey court house in London. Just punch in a name and be ready for a shock. I did just that and am completely mortified and ashamed to declare that on 10th June 1801 a certain Thomas Glasse was indicted for feloniously stealing, ‘three pounds weight of hogs bristles to the value of eight shillings.’ Now I am convinced that in this world things tend to catch up with you. It’s a case of an eye for an eye or in this instance a bristle for a bristle. When I considered the ramifications of such a dastardly crime, I came to the awful conclusion that the injured party, a certain, ’John Allen, brush maker’, could well have been of a mind, in his moment of distress, to lay a hex on future generations of the Glasse family.
Being a Glasse it was my job to see us through the dilemma.
I spent some time reflecting.
It is a bald fact that as men get older their hair has a habit of fleeing the cranium. This phenomenon is often counteracted by ever increasing, voluminous amounts of bristles sprouting forth upon the eyebrows. If you happened to be driving in our little New Zealand town of Whakatane last week you may have witnessed an attack upon a local officer of the law (who just happens to be my son in law) Apparently his eyebrows had become so bushy that his whole family wrestled him to the ground and well and truly plucked him like a chicken. Was he a victim of the curse of the hogs bristles? It got me thinking.
Has my brother Rotundo (named after my Italian Mother’s maiden name) fallen foul of something that happened over two hundred years ago?
Under the pretext of checking a suspicious looking mole just behind his left ear, I was staggered to see veritable bush reserves flowing from his auditory canal. Copious clumps of unruly ear fuz appeared to be multiplying faster than the mangroves in Ohiwa harbour. I realised that Rotundo was so concerned with the diminishing foliage on his head that he had not noticed the increasing hairiness elsewhere. The situation was desperate. I sent a coded message to the family, ‘We need to spend a day at the orifice, hair today, gone tomorrow’ The family took immediate action, purchased a weed whacker from the hardware store, ambushed the hairy one and proceeded to blaze a trail through the undergrowth. It was like venturing where men fear to tread, we discovered things that were missing, presumed dead. Rotty’s school cap, half a pair of sun glasses, a man with a stop/go sign, an ear wig and a sizable piece of Ruby Wax.
As we hacked our way toward my brother’s brain, for no apparent reason, our thoughts went to Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space.
Imagine how delighted we were when both ears were completely free of bristly impediments and by shining a penlight into his, now naked lughole, we could illuminate the clock on the opposite wall. The battle was almost done but one further challenge presented itself. Nothing gets up peoples noses more than hairs. Many famous identities have had moderately hairy noses, Nostraldamus, Snozzal Durante, Goobychev to name a few. Rotundo, had enough wiggly spiders legs up there to furnish Ruud the bug man with a whole season of TV shows. They just had to go. With the immortal words, ‘Beam me up Snotty’ on our lips, we got to work. As each follicle was tweazered out tears fell from my brother’s eyes, visible proof that at last he can breathe easy, released from the curse of the stolen hogs bristles.