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'... he had noticed how many of his fellow members had fat uncles, too, and he felt it a sad waste of good material not to make these the basis of a sporting contest...'

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All right! Blandings, dash it all. Plum was quite right, of course. An author must always 'be very careful in the early stages how he commits himself to dates and what is known as locale.'

Summer Lightning

By P.G. Wodehouse

More of the Empress and her many trials, poor thing.

'He (pink Ronnie Fish) bounced tennis-balls on my pig!'

'Do you mean to tell me,' he said sternly, 'that all this fuss, ruining my morning's work, was simply about that blasted pig of yours?'

'I refuse to allow you to call the Empress a blasted pig! Good heavens!' cried Lord Emsworth passionately. 'Can none of my family appreciate the fact that she is the most remarkable animal in Great Britain? No pig in the whole annals of the Shropshire Agricultural Show has ever won the silver medal two years in succession. And that, if only people will leave her alone and refrain from incessantly pelting her with tennis balls, is what the Empress is quite certain to do. It is an unheard of feat.' (From Chapter 3, The Sensational Theft of a Pig,pgs. 65-67)

Jeeves: I have information regarding the choirboys' handicap, sir. The probable winner of that event is even now under the very roof of Twin Hall. Harold, sir, the page boy.

Wooster: I don't see it, Jeeves. He's practically circular.

Jeeves: The boy is a flyer, sir.

Wooster: How do you know?

Jeeves: I happened to be pursuing him this morning with a view to catching him a clip on the side of the head.

Wooster: Great Scott, Jeeves, you?

Jeeves: The lad is of an outspoken disposition, sir, and made an opprobrious remark respecting my appearance.

Wooster: What did he say about your appearance?

Jeeves: I do not recall, sir, but it was opprobrious. I attempted to correct him but he outdistanced me by yards and made good his escape.

Wooster: This is sensational! We are sure, are we, Jeeves?

Jeeves: (Lowers chin in collusive nod). (From the Series 1 episode, The Gambling Event, in which gentleman Jeeves provides his young employer Bertie with the skinny on the village choirboys' 100-yard dash).


Plum, the master, and Ethel Wodehouse in especially good cheer, having smuggled the beloved but, alas, contraband Pekes aboard ship. Read the wonderful tribute P.G. wrote his turtle dove on the occasion of their 59th wedding anniversary when Plum was still a fresh, young thing of 80-something. He managed to carry on rejoicing for another decade and a bit - not quite long enough, I'm afraid, to complete the last of the pig saga, Sunset at Blandings.

A Few Quick Ones

By P.G. Wodehouse

Although he had never mentioned it to anybody, feeling that it was but an idle daydream and not whithin the sphere of practical politics, the idea of having a Fat Uncles sweepstake at the Drones Club had long been in Freddie Widgeon's mind, such as it was. Himself the possessor of one of the fattest uncles in London - Rodney, Lord Blicester - he had noticed how many of his fellow members had fat uncles, too, and he felt it a sad waste of good material not to make these the basis of a sporting contest similar, though on a smaller scale, to those in operation in Ireland and Calcutta.

Perfectly simple, the mechanics of the thing. Put the names of the uncles in a hat, put the names of the punters in another hat, draw a name from the first hat, draw a name from the second hat, and the holder of the fattest uncle scooped the jackpot. No difficulty there.

But there was a catch, and a very serious one - to wit, the problem of how to do the weighing. He could not, for instance, go to Lord Blicester and say "Would you mind just stepping on this try-your-weight machine for a moment, Uncle Rodney? It is essential to satisfy the judges that you are fatter than the Duke of Dunstable." At least, he could, but there woud be questions asked, and explanations would lead to pique, bad feeling and possibly the stopping of a much-needed allowance. It was, in short, an impasse, and he had come to look on the scheme as just another of those things which, though good, cannot be pushed along, when, coming into the bar one morning, he found an animated group assembled there and as he entered heard McGarry, the man behind the counter, say "Ten stone three". Upon which, there was a burst of hearty cheering and, enquiring the reason for this enthusiasm, he was informed that McGarry had revealed an unsuspected talent. He was able to tell the weight of anything from a vegetable marrow to a Covent Garden tenor just by looking at it. (From The Fat of the Land, p. 1)


Jeeves Takes Charge

By P.G. Wodehouse

'If you ask me, Aunt Dahlia,' I said, 'I think Angela is well out of it. This Glossop is a tough baby. One of London's toughest. I was trying to tell you just now what he did to me one night at the Drones. First having got me in a sporting mood with a bottle of the ripest, he betted I wouldn't swing myself across the swimming bath by the ropes and rings. I knew I could do it on my head so I took him on, exulting in the fun, so to speak. And when I'd done half the trip and was going as strong as dammit, I found he had looped the last rope back against the rail, leaving me no alternative but to drop into the depths and swim ashore in correct evening costume.'

'He did?'

'He certainly did. It was months ago, and I haven't got really dry yet. You wouldn't want your daughter to marry a man capapble of a thing like that?'(From Jeeves and the Song of Songs, p. 98)

Very Good, Jeeves!

By P.G. Wodehouse

All these things counted with me, but what really drew me to Bleaching Court like a magnet was the knowledge that young Tuppy Glossop would be among those present.

I feel sure I have told you before about this black-hearted bird, but I will give you the strength of it once again, just to keep the records straight. He was the fellow, if you remember, who, ignoring a lifelong friendship in the course of which he had frequently eaten my bread and salt, betted me one night at the Drones that I wouldn't swing myself across the swimming-bath by the ropes and rings and then, with almost inconceivable treachery, went and looped back the last ring, causing me to drop into the fluid and ruin one of the nattiest suits of dress-clothes in London.

To execute a fitting vengeance on this bloke had been the ruling passion of my life ever since. (From The Ordeal of Young Tuppy, pgs. 203-204)