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So, what of the future? If the
tradition keeps living, will it be
healthy and still doing the garden
at the age of ninety, or will it be in
a home, having nostalgia lessons?
Will it be blagging on Myface, or will
it be wittering on about the good
old days? Well, whatever happens
I’ll be having a crack at another 25
years. I reckon the thing to do is
avoid progress.
Where has progress ever got us?
Where we are today is the answer. q
All Things Dark and Dangerous
In the 1700s Swafield was the home
of Wesley Charles, who led the
‘Christian Realist’ movement, a.k.a.
the Pessimist Methodists (by those
who could say it). They preached
that it was all very well going on
about God’s wonderful works, and
‘For The Beauty of The Earth’ and
all that stuff, but others lived in the
real world and therefore knew better
- or worse, depending how you look
at it. If you look at it at all.
Well, Wesley did, and he said
“God’s only human, after all, and he
only had six days to do the whole
job, it was first time he’d tried it, and
you know what it’s like working to
a deadline - so everything won’t be
perfect.” The technical term was
‘the God of the gaffs’. He had some
success, gaining followers, till he
had a schism with himself over how
many pinheads could dance on an
angel, and it all fell apart. But not
before he wrote his most famous
hymn:
All things dark and dangerous,
All creatures hard and soft;
All things wet and wiggly,
What was He thinking of?
Each snake that slides and slithers,
The dog that bites for fun,
The slug so low and slimy,
He made them, every one.
the first half. And there was no because no-one’s going to listen Plus they might have a computer.
university courses in folk music in all the way to the end anyhow.
The rich man in his castle,
the old days - you had to learn at Because there’s still a lot of people
The poor men at his gate,
the feet of older performers. What But despite what you may think, aren’t on the interweb. And the
Knee deep in mud and pullets,
I learnt from Claud Cockle’s feet I’m actually pretty cutting hedge. only broadband you can get in
No wonder they’re irate.
would fill a bucket - shame I never I do CDs, play the keyboard, my village is the Womens Bright
went into chiropody, really. and have a huge netsite on the Hour Bras Band. So I send
The purple headed pimple
interweb (www.sidkipper.co.uk). out 2,000 copies of the Trunch
And blackheads, all are signs,
And, of course, there’s been I’ve even done some programmes Trumpet, three times a year, by the
Conclusively revealing
changes in technology. Our family for channel 4 Radio (www. proper post, what we all own, at
Unintelligent design.
made its first recordings on wax channel4radio.com), what you least at the moment. That keeps
cylinders, and you had to get on can upload down from their site. people up to the date about all
He gave us eyes to see them,
with a song in them days, ‘cos a They’re called The Kipper Country my performances, recordings,
And lips that might ask who
cylinder only lasted a short time. Code, and they tell city people publications and broadcasts
Created such delights as
There was no time for decoration, what to expect if they move to the - whether they like it or not. I don’t
Mumps, rickets, and the flu.
or playing instruments, otherwise country. So far, I have to say, they hand address them by quill pen
you’d end up with John Barleycorn aren’t working very well, because any more, due to the shortage of
The constant fear of illness,
still being wheeled round and they’re still coming. But it can all geese, but they still reach places
The wasps alarming buzz,
round the field, or the trees still be enjoyed in the comfort of your that computers can’t. You can
Must lead to the conclusion
growing high, and you’d miss the own home, although I find the join too, if you like - write to 10
His joke was all on us.
whole point of it. Now, of course, comfort of someone else’s home Perseverance Road, Queensbury,
we have compacted disks, where better, ‘cos then they can supply Bradford, BD13 1LY. They handle From the singing of Sid Kipper
you can go on as long as you like the heating and refreshments. such things for me. © Chris Sugden, 2008
The Living Tradition - Page 15
Issue82.indd 15 24/2/09 16:56:17
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