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Biggles is back

A weekly column reproduced from the Bristol Evening Post

Chocks away! Biggles is on his way back!

The rights to all 92 of Captain W.E. Johns’ legendary tales of derring-do have been bought up by a film producer who now plans a series of blockbuster movies starring the eponymous hero.

But amid the rejoicing amongst those of us who spent childhood years inhaling glue fumes as we assembled our Airfix kit Sopwith Camels, there are grave fears as to how the old boy will adjust. Can James Bigglesworth, DSO, DFC, MC really survive in the Cool Britannia of the new millennium?

For instance, how will the poor chap react when he finds out that gays have been admitted to the armed forces and that he’ll be sharing the mess hall with comrades who, ahem, Land on the Other Runway? Bandits at five o’clock, indeed.

And what will he do when he finds out that Algy and Ginger have both grown moustaches, set up home in Notting Hill and gone and adopted surrogate twins? It doesn’t bear thinking about.

Who’s going to explain to him that the Hun in the sun, once cannon fodder for our airborne ace, is now on our side? Should make for some interesting NATO manoeuvres, anyway. And that’s before he finds out that the Germans actually make half of our new fighter plane.

Who’s going to tell him that the factory which produced our hero’s beloved open-top MG sports car, has been bought, sold, and brought to its knees by the very chaps from Munich he used to drop bombs on?

Whos going to tell him that we don’t even make our own laws anymore and are instead governed by a bunch of free-loading continentals? Who’s going to tell him that if you use violence on a burglar, you’ll end up in chokey? Who’s going to explain to him what vegetarians are?

And who’s going to tell him that in Mr Blah’s brave new world, you can put up a plaque to honour Dunkirk veterans, but you can’t mention the war? Or that we won it?

Don’t do it, Biggles, you’re best off out of it, mate. Besides, Vera Lynn is still looking for you after that unsavoury incident round the back of the hangar on VE night.

Why all the fuss about the call-centre workers who got a message on their computer screens telling them to log off and clear their desks because they were sacked?

Why should we have any sympathy for them? These are the people who ring you up during Coronation Street trying to sell you double glazing or a new kitchen. These are the people who launch into a breathless script which doesn’t allow you to get a word in edgeways in case you tell them to push off.

These are the people who force me to keep a referee’s whistle by the phone.

It’s like asking us to have sympathy for all the bank staff who’ve lost their jobs as branches are shut down. You spend years treating us like dogshit and then expect us to feel sorry for you?

Reap what you sow, pal.

Jack Straw is about to get his knickers in a twist over whether or not to allow Mike Tyson back into Britain. Personally, I can’t see the problem.

Let’s face it, who amongst us hasn’t given a woman a gentle tap when she’s got a bit lippy? Perhaps if Iron Mike would care to visit Bristol, he could sort our local female boxer, Jane Crouch. Mind you, he’d have to avoid PMT week if he was going to stand a chance of winning.

The Pope has made a big deal out of revealing the legendary Third Secret of Fatima.

What was it? That she was able to throw the javelin so far because she was really a man all along?

– Barry Beelzebub

* The views of Mr Beelzebub are purely personal and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Editor or staff of this newspaper, or of whichever two bob actress Neil Morrisey is playing hide the sausage with this week. By the way, Cherie Blair and Zippy from Rainbow. Separated at birth, or what?

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