Monday, July 9, 2018


Your correspondent might not remember where he was when anything important happened like Kennedy and Martin Luther King being shot or the moon landing but for some reason he does remember where he was when the English Soccer Team last won the World Cup. The English Team had defeated Germany. Can't remember the minor details, but I do remember accidently hearing the results of the game in the earpiece of a hand made crystal radio that was sometimes able to receive the BBC World Service so long as the wire mosquito netting that functioned as the radio's aerial was properly located for radio waves and incorrectly located for keeping the Mosquito at bay, a happenstance described as wanton vandalism which under questioning required truly gymnastic explanations from me. I tried everything from blaming others to falling off chairs, without any kind of success and then it hit me. Meekly and with a little foot pointing, I handed over the precious radio and explained that I was listening out for the results of the World Cup Final.

"Who Won?" was the obvious question and reaching into the wealth of English History and tradition with as much pride as I could put into my shinny little eyes I answered "England!" It was a rock of ages moment. With all my faults and desperate flaws I was a patriot doing what patriots do, rooting for the team, hell bent on victory no matter the personal cost. "What was the Score?" At a young age a person gets a reputation and mine was far from fair. "England Four, Germany Two." In my reply I put a slight cross in my eye, an innuendo wrapped up in a sinister suggestion that my inquisitor might not be all in for England, a foreign grandmother, an aunt who married an Italian, possibly a Baptist or a Catholic, a fifth columnist in English ranks. But desperate times require certain often unappealing and sometimes loathsome tactics. Had my inquisitor known I'd been trying to hear if Bob Dylan and the Band singing Rainy Day Woman had made it to the BBC's half hour pop music program when the program was rudely interrupted by an unhealthy wave of nationalistic fever things might have gone poorly for me. Yes indeed, back when I was a callow youth I'd have been prime material for a job as legal advisor to the current administration.

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