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ashokbhatia

Denizens of the Republic of Plumsville are cordially invited to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the new cabinet of its Federal Government.Blandings castle-enHon’ble President, Lord Emsworth (Clarence Threepwood, 9th Earl of Emsworth), would preside over the function. The Vice President, Mr. Chichester Clam, shall also grace the occasion.

The ceremony shall begin with the Hon’ble President raising the National Flag, to the accompaniment of a rendering of the National Anthem ‘Sonny Boy’ by Ms. Cora Bellinger.

The Hon’ble President, the Vice President and the incumbent Prime Minister shall thereafter garland the statue of Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, KBE, the Father of the Nation.

Oaths shall be administered by the Chief Justice of Plumsville, Sir Watkyn Bassett. Oaths shall be in the name of the Constitution of Plumsville, viz., The Code of the Woosters.

Here are the respective portfolios and the incumbents:

Prime Minister:

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Some residents of Plumsville might be interested in this news release from the Nordic branch of PBC, the Plum Broadcasting Corporation.

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It is a well documented fact that the epidemic of Wodehousitis peaks at two times in a year. One, around the 15th of October, the day on which P G Wodehouse was born. Two, around the 14th of February, the day he decided to start regaling his Guardian Angels instead.

This is not to say that the epidemic is dormant during the rest of the year. It merely subsides a wee bit, popping up here and there, irrespective of caste, creed, religion, sex or ethnicity.

The medical fraternity continues to be clueless as to how to contain the dreaded epidemic. Researchers of all hues continue to be baffled at the unique kind of drug resistance displayed by those who suffer from Wodehousitis – they exhibit no desire to be rid of the affliction.

It is learnt from reliable sources that residents of Plumsville, a euphimistic term deployed to identify those suffering from acute Wodehousitis, could go to any lengths to celebrate their shared suffering from the dreaded affliction. To them, cultural, linguistic and continental barriers do not count. Man-made boundaries do not matter.

Take the case of one Morten Anersen from Norway and one Ashok Bhatia from India. On the 15th of October, 2016, the two decided to put their nose bags together and meet up at the Little England Tea Rooms (LETR) at Vollen in Norway.

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It is understood that wide-ranging talks were held between the two on the occasion. The atmosphere was said to have been highly cordial and congenial. The couple running the show at LETR, Henning Edin Lyche and Liv Kjersti Lyche, when forewarned about the specific occasion being celebrated, revived the best of Drones Club traditions. British high tea was served with much enthusiasm and attention to detail.

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The talks are said to have covered the following topics:

  • BREXIT: Whether Wodehouse, had he been around these days, would have approved of Brexit. The conjecture of the duo was in the negative.
  • The Technological Twist: Would he have continued churning out juicy narratives, with his trademark old world charm, replete with eccentric lords, super-intelligent butlers, domineering aunts, goofy females, woolly-headed bachelors, romantic cops and kids who could motivate even vicars to aspire to higher levels of spiritual upliftment? Especially, in this age of technology and the Internet of Things? The guess was in the affirmative. Probably, at best, telegrams might have got replaced by WhatsApp messages and phone calls by Skype or Viber calls.
  • Of dyspepsia, class distinctions and scarabs: Some ever fresh lessons from ‘Something Fresh‘ came up for discussion. Larsen Exercises, brisk walks and cold baths and the need to have a digestive system which keeps firing at all twelve cylinders, were mentioned with much enthusiasm. The socio-economic divide between Aline Peters and Joan Valentine, inter alia, came under the duo’s lens. The correlation between being a millionaire and being a collector of scarabs was discussed.
  • Real People and Real Books: Many facets of Wodehouse’s personality were discussed. The fact that he modelled his characters based on real life people was mentioned. So was the fact that books like ‘Types of Ethical Theory‘, once used by Florence Craye to attempt to uplift the intellectual leanings of Bertie Wooster, really did exist.
  • The Nietzsche Taboo: Surprise was expressed at the fact that Friedrich Nietzsche, held to be basically unsound by a person no less than Jeeves, was also born on the 15th of October, though the year of his birth was 1844. There were mutual confessions that Jeeves’ world was taken rather seriously. Hence, no attempts were likely to be made to read up any of Nietzsche’s works.
  • No darts, please: Out of respect for the excellent interior design of LETR, as well as for several other customers present, plans to throw some darts were deferred.
  • Potential members: It was noted with much regret that such eminent members as Geir Hasnes, Jo Ingebrigt Spalder, Jens Magne Andreassen, Oystein Moe and others could not join in the festivities.
  • Of 2017: It was hoped that a meeting planned some time in either April or May 2017 would attract better attention of Plum fans based in various parts of Norway. A strong need was felt for a local Jeeves who would be able to spare some time and coordinate the affair.

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It is reliably learnt that Liv Kjersti Lyche, the delicately nurtured better-half of the owner of the place, a charming lady in the mould of Mrs Spottsworth, had spent some time during her teens in India, learning the art of dishing out piping hot samosas and chicken tikka sandwiches.

She also turned out to be a Plum fan, thereby adding some more sparkle and warmth to the proceedings. Another round of animated discussion is said to have followed, wherein ‘Laughing Gas‘ was merely one of the several works of Wodehouse which had popped up.

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The meeting is said to have generated much laughter and camaraderie and reconfirmed the presence of Wodehousitis in the Nordic country which already boasts of more than 40 works of Plum translated into Norwegian. It also set a precedent of sorts in terms of achieving Gender Diversity for the Drones Club.

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Vikings are believed to have had a stiff-upper-lip approach to life in the distant past. Gallows Humour is said to be a typical Scandinavian offering.

Folklore has it that the sense of humour of Indians also leaves much to be desired. If it has been there, perhaps it has been more of the loud and overt kind.

But goofy gatherings of the kind reported herein above indicate that those inhabiting Nordic and Asian regions of the world these days perhaps relish not only a chuckle or two but also a loud guffaw once in a while. Subtle humour of the Wodehousean kind appears to have gained currency in these regions.

One wonders if the Humour Quotient of Homo Sapiens tends to improve in tandem with their gradual evolution over a period of time. If so, sunnier days are ahead. Further research by anthropologists and historians is strongly recommended to validate this hypothesis.

The global per capita density of the epidemic of Wodehousitis also needs to be studied further.

(Related Posts:

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2015/07/30/the-epidemic-of-wodehousitis

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2016/01/30/a-drones-club-meet-at-asker-in-norway

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2016/10/18/what-ho-what-ho)

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P G Wodehouse was born on the 15th of October, 1881. Every year, his fans celebrate his birth anniversary with traditional fervour and gaiety. This year was no exception.

Some went out and rummaged through book stores, virtual or otherwise, to buy yet another book of his. The idea was to try to fill in the gaping holes in their priceless collections. In keeping with the current trends, shelfies got clicked and shared over social media. Others simply curled up in bed and re-read for the n-th time a work of his, a tissue restorative on their side.

Some burrowed deep into his works and came up with some lesser known compositions of his. Some paid rich tributes by sharing other details about the author and his life. Yet others came up with juicy posts on the occasion.

Here are some of the posts the residents of Plumsville may relish, arranged in an alphabetic manner, as per their names.

Arunabha Sengupta
http://www.cricketcountry.com/articles/wodehouse-at-the-wicket-the-cricketing-connections-of-the-legendary-writer-18805

Honoria Glossop
https://honoriaplum.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/the-birth-of-p-g-wodehouse-and-sherlock-holmes

Morten Arnesen
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DbiwROt0yL8

Ragini Sgh
BELATED BIRTHDAY WISHES, DEAR PGW

Ancestors,forefathers, the whole clan
Woven into an exquisite web with élan,

Romantic exploits or schemes absurd
Beautifully penned, enriched by each word,

Mundane chatter or complicated plots
Skillfully tied in bouquets of forget me nots,

Whether it’s Gussie or Lord Emsworth
Their anecdotes bring warmth like a crackling hearth,

Aunt Dahlia’s exuberance or Uncle Tom’s generosity
Can be matched by Gally’s wit or Jeeves’s spontaneity,

The maudlin soppy Madeline often a pain
Her tear drops beautifully knitted in God’s Daisy chain,

Bertie’s simplicity and sheer goofiness
Always landing him in an inextricable mess,

But the master wields his pen with panache and ease
Sailing along like a will O wisp in the breeze,

A belated Happy Birthday to the inimitable P.G.W !

Shiva Kumar
I HAD A PLUM TO-DAY

I got a book, it came as a gift,
It picked me up, gave me a lift.

I’ll immerse myself in every page,
Go back in time, to a happier age.

I find myself a cosy nook,
Sit back, open my book.

Page one produces a broad smile,
I move on to two, and ponder awhile;

Page three draws from me a snort,
Someone’s already plotting a plot!

They are scheming like the dickens;
As I turn the pages, the plot thickens.

This devious planning is making me laugh,
I shake in my chair and almost fall off.

There’s a chap and there’s his butler,
There’s a planner and a plan scuttler.

Aunts pop in, here and there
Embellishing the story, as it were.

Telegrams fly, to and fro, thick and fast
I am thinking this is too good, will it last?

Page fifty, and I’m wiping the tears,
I haven’t laughed so much in years.

Is it me, rumbling with mirth,
Or just a tremor in the earth?

The book’s a riot, too funny to handle,
It’s become dark, I will need a candle

Night has fallen; I too fell, many times
Picked myself up, ignored the chimes

I’ll finish the book, come what may
I’ll try not to fall off again, I’ll stay.

I’m chuckling away into the night
When I finish the book it’s first light

Ah! I can happily get back to the old grind
After all I had a Plum to elevate the mind!

As a part of the global celebrations, two Wodehousean fans, hailing from two different continents, decided to meet up for a cosy chat over high tea in a British style quaint little restaurant in Norway. But more about that later.

(Related Posts:

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2015/02/16/fondly-remembering-plum

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2016/10/20/a-drones-club-meeting-at-vollen-in-Norway)

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What ho!

PGWodehouse

ashokbhatia

Just a week to go for the birthday celebrations,

Some of you must be concluding your Plummy deliberations;

Whipping up some juicy anecdotes and posts,

Which can be read with much glee by the party hosts.

With doors shut, the brain firing on all twelve cylinders,

Time perhaps to pen down the life’s goofy blunders;

Creative juices sloshing about, a tissue restorative by your side,

Between us bosom pals, there is never a thing to hide.

There are no contests to be entered into, nor any prizes to be won,

Either with your brain or with your heart, just pen down a juicy one;

The soft inner glow of happiness is all that you would require,

A rainbow of adulation around your shoulders you will surely acquire.

(Relates post: https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2014/10/15/an-invitation-for-the-residents-of-plumsville)

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first-birthday-cake

The Earth has turned for 365 days,

My kid brother has meanwhile grown in many ways;

He has experienced all the seasons,

To smile together we have many reasons!

 

His lungs are full of fresh Arctic air,

Yet to walk, he crawls with a flair;

Single words he only speaks now,

To take care of him, I am always in tow!

 

His eyes sparkle like a pair of twin stars,

His laughter is infectious, it never jars;

Playing tabla with a flourish he is learning fast,

The range of biscuits he eats is really vast!

 

In his life, the moon and the stars shall forever shine,

We shall travel together long, I and this brother of mine!

(Composed on behalf of a girl of seven years)

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Denizens of the Republic of Plumsville are cordially invited to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the new cabinet of its Federal Government.Blandings castle-enHon’ble President, Lord Emsworth (Clarence Threepwood, 9th Earl of Emsworth), would preside over the function. The Vice President, Mr. Chichester Clam, shall also grace the occasion.

The ceremony shall begin with the Hon’ble President raising the National Flag, to the accompaniment of a rendering of the National Anthem ‘Sonny Boy’ by Ms. Cora Bellinger.

The Hon’ble President, the Vice President and the incumbent Prime Minister shall thereafter garland the statue of Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, KBE, the Father of the Nation.

Oaths shall be administered by the Chief Justice of Plumsville, Sir Watkyn Bassett. Oaths shall be in the name of the Constitution of Plumsville, viz., The Code of the Woosters.

Here are the respective portfolios and the incumbents:

Prime Minister: Mr. Rupert Psmith (‘p’ is silent)

Commerce and Industry: Ms. Joan Valentine

Defence: Ms. Stephanie Byng

Entrepreneurship: Ms. Sally

Fashion Design: Sir Roderick Spode

Finance: Mr. Stanley Featherstonehaugh Ukridge

Food Processing: Mr. Anatole

Health & Family Welfare: Mr. Ashe Marson

Home: Ms. Dahlia Travers

Human Resource/Education: Ms. Tomlinson

International Relations: Mr. Reginald Jeeves

Information & Broadcasting: Mr. Mulliner

Labour & Employment: Mr. Gussie Fink-Nottle

Literature and Fine Arts: Ms. Rosie M. Banks

Matrimonial Bliss: Mr. Bingo Little

Milk of Human Kindness: Mr. Bertram Wilberforce Wooster

Net Neutrality: Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe

Parliamentary Affairs: Hon. Galahad Threepwood

Space and Atomic Energy: Ms. Madeline Bassett

Sports: Ms. Pauline Stoker

Taxation: Mr. Tom Travers

Terror Management: Ms. Roberta Wickham

Tissue Restoratives: Ms. Postlethwaite

Tourism: Ms. Angela Travers

Transport: Mr. Percy Craye, Earl of Worplesdon

Wildlife & Forests: Captain Cuthbert Gervase ‘Bwana’ Brabazon-Biggar

The swearing-in ceremony shall be followed by a short program, as follows:

Speech by Mr. Rupert Psmith

‘Meeting Millennium Development Goals: The Role of Humour in enhancing the Gross Happiness Index of countries’

 Brief talk by Ms. Stephanie Byng

‘Defending borders of countries with a dash of humour; The need to set up training academies in pinching helmets’

Presentation by Mr. Gussie Fink-Nottle

‘Boosting employment prospects of youth by encouraging newt-rearing industry’

Brief talk by Mr. Bertram W. Wooster

‘Managing Immigrants in an increasingly globalized world – An Innovative Approach based on the Milk of Human Kindness’

Talk by Sir Gregory Parsloe-Parsloe

‘Maintaining Net Neutrality by pinching servers and technocrats from neighbouring countries’

Address by Ms. Roberta Wickham

‘Using the hot-water-bottle puncturing strategy and other goofy schemes to neutralize terroristic endeavours’

Video presentation by Ms. Angela Travers

‘Promoting tourism by protecting sharks and whales’

A vaudeville performance by Aunt Julia and Joe Danby

A parody of the Market Snodsbury speech of Mr. Gussie Fink-Nottle, delivered by Master Seabury

The President shall thereafter be pleased to have you with him and the newly inducted team at the lavish luncheon being planned by Monsieur Anatole, God’s gift to our gastric juices. He shall be assisted by the house staff, led by Mr. Sebastian Beach.

The event shall conclude with a Guard of Honour, led by Colonel Aubrey Wyvern, astride the high-bred Potato Chip.

Venue: Forecourt of Blandings Castle
Date: October 15, 2015
Time: 10:00 hours sharp

Notes:

1. Guests and invitees are hereby requested to take their seats by 09:45 hours.

2. Pets are strictly discouraged, lest they disturb the pre-lunch siesta of the Empress of Blandings. James Pirbright shall be in attendance. All the decent sheep and cattle shall be hustled away into regions unknown, so the ceremony may proceed without any interruption.

3. Cell phones and technical gizmos of all kinds shall need to be deposited with Constable Ernest Dobbs at the entrance.

4. For those who wish to take a guided tour of the magnificent gardens and the moss-covered yew alley, Mr. Angus McAllister shall be available after the conclusion of the ceremony.

RSVP: Secretary to the Hon’ble President: Rupert Baxter.

(Notes:

  1. Inputs received from avid fans of P G Wodehouse are gratefully acknowledged.
  2. You may also like to check out: https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2015/10/10/politicos-in-plumsville-part-1)

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What ho!

Just a week to go for the birthday celebrations,

Some of you must be concluding your Plummy deliberations;

Whipping up some juicy anecdotes and posts,

Which can be read with much glee by the party hosts.

 

With doors shut, the brain firing on all twelve cylinders,

Time perhaps to pen down the life’s goofy blunders;

Creative juices sloshing about, a tissue restorative by your side,

Between us bosom pals, there is never a thing to hide.

 

There are no contests to be entered into, nor any prizes to be won,

Either with your brain or with your heart, just pen down a juicy one;

The soft inner glow of happiness is all that you would require,

A rainbow of adulation around your shoulders you will surely acquire.

(Relates post: https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2014/10/15/an-invitation-for-the-residents-of-plumsville)

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