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Fifth Column – A Birds’ Eye View of Mendip

We are assured, or perhaps threatened that this could turn into a regular feature of the B.B. in the future!

If this gets past the new B.B. team it will become the first of a series of monthly articles of a slightly satirical bent, by a syndicate of ‘Mendip Birds’ giving readers a bird's-eye view of the social scene.  Firstly, I suppose we must defeat our own laziness and make an effort to provide seven pages of material apiece during our time of membership.  Since there are at least five of us, we should be able to go on for some time particularly since we intend only to deliver the best insults which are, by definition, brief.

First, I bring to your attention, the B.E.C. representation on the Hunters Shove Ha'penny team. Although the team are doing very well at propping up the league (they haven't won a match yet, have they?) Barrie and Jon-Jon have at least excessively won their rounds and it seems that we might have to recruit moody Pete if we are to retain only B.E.C. representation.

It must be cold in February, for at least three of our more senior members celebrated getting older in November.  Alan Thomas, Mike Palmer and Mike Wheadon (to name but one.)  Reviewing this scene, I can't see that it is much of a triumph for sobriety.  Their ages total at least the century even if Alan IS only thirty!

I have often wondered if there is any truth in the rumour that educational standards are in decline and on balance, I think that this years' influx of 'freshers' (for their Hunters initiation) removes any doubt.  Still perhaps their studies will keep them too busy to come back again!

Back at the Belfry there has been a significant lack of Chris Batstone, who seems to spend most of his week ends now at weddings (Pete Eckford was the latest) and it is beginning to be doubtful now whether Chris is the cause or the effect.  Incidentally, we notice that 'Mr' Nigel is back to sub-normal and free from potential matrimonial situations – SNAFU!

Novels and publications seem to be coming back into vogue now that S'nab has joined the long line of aspiring novelists.  However, with such exalted family connections who knows?  We may yet see his non-de-guerre in the bookshops.  Talking of books and publications (who was?) you may have seen a rather sorry Yellow Biddle version of 'The Caving Songs of Mendip' published by Grampian.  It's quite flattering to know that our folklore has spread so far, but it's a shame that he managed to get the words of even some of the well-known songs wrong. Never mind.  It may be just the spur to our Alfie to produce the definitive version (but don't hold your breath waiting, folks!)

Did you notice the brief mention of the Grampian back there?  Well, they've recently held their dinner and it was well attended by B.E.C. bods, some of whom were heard to mutter 'never in the field of human thirst have so many quested so far for so many pints'.  Martin Bishop went up and, naturally managed to inflict yet another injury on himself - only a sprain this time - but it is rumoured round the Hunters that if he fractures any more he'll have to go bionic!

That's about all for this month, but I thought it would be nice to finish with the odd quote or so if there is room, heard around the pub or the shed.

"If you're older than him, why does he look older than you?"

"Swildons is different from when I was last down in 1960.”