Sunday, December 05, 2010

An Anthology of London Marathon Runners

I am a bit behind on this. Both Warriorwoman and Jogblog have long ago commented on The Official Register of London Marathon Runners , which lists everybody who has taken part in the London Marathon, with their times.

My only comment is that it sounds a lot like "The Anthology of Huntingdonshire Cabmen" :
It can hardly be claimed for the newly published Anthology of Huntingdonshire Cabmen that it is, in the words of an over-enthusiastic critic, 'a masterpiece of imaginative literature'. The Anthology consists of the more striking names (with initials) from each of the three volumes. It is a factual and unemphatic work, and the compiler has skinned the cream from the lists. Here are such old favourites as Whackfast, E.W., Fodge, S., and Nurthers, P.L. The index is accurate, and the introduction by Cabman Skinner is brief and workmanlike.
I have mentioned this before but failed to attribute the quote
It was written by J B Morton who wrote a humorous column for the Daily Express under the name of Beachcomber. I don't know how well he is remembered today but he influenced a whole absurdist/silly strand in English comedy including Spike Milligan, Monty Python and Terry Pratchett.
In a time when someone has a criminal conviction and lost his job merely for the flippant tweet: "Crap! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You've got a week... otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!" (a fuller account of the case can be found here), his influence might be spreading wider. Absurdity seems to have escaped from the humour section into the main news pages. To use another Beachcomber quote:
Justice must not only be seen to be done it must be seen to be believed

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