Sunday, September 16, 2012
The Lord knows that my sense of humour can be juvenile at times. I have been giggling solidly for hours now after making the discovery that there was once an American sit-com called 'That's My Bush!'. And I wanted to share that with you, in case it amused you too.
I haven't seen it, and I have no idea what it was about. I can only expect disappointment from an unwise expedition to youtube.
In my version, the central character is a beautiful black headed young woman called Kate, perhaps played by Emily Blunt, who has a job at a Garden Centre.
At first I thought that, nodding to the great Armistead Maupin, this garden centre was called something like Plant Parenthood.
But then I thought of the almost infinitely sinister 'Rheingold Nurseries'.
There was actually a Rhinegold Nurseries on the other side of the Loxley valley where I grew up.
Despite the fact that my father is a lifelong Wagner lover, and that my memories of the 1980 Chereau/Boulez centenary at Bayreuth mean that I must have seen the whole of the Ring Cycle by the time I was ten, I believe that throughout my childhood I had the vague idea that the village on the other side of the valley was called Rhinegold, and that it had a kindergarten.
I think I had my first car by the time that it occurred to me that (a) it was a garden centre, and (b) it must have been named after a German Opera Cycle with Sinister Connotations just after the war.
What is it with Yorkshiremen and Wagner, anyway? The central joke of 'It Shouldn't Happen to a Vet', James Herriot's comic novel about a Scotsman in the North, is that he works for two entirely stereotypical yorkshire veterinary surgeons who are called Siegfried and Tristan Farnon.
I mean, it would be slightly funnier if it were Siegfried and Tristan Satterthwaite, but ISHTAV is a true story. Those were their names. And when you look at the timeline for that, that's just bizarre.
Incidentally, does anyone think that Lord Vetinari in the Discworld books might be based on Lorenzo de Medici?
My sister once told me that she didn't like the Harry Potter books because Ms Rowling had stolen all the ideas from Terry Pratchett. It is enough to make a Wagnerite bang his head against the wall.
Posted by John Lawrence Aspden at 11:25 AM