A to Z: A is for Aberystwyth

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Glorious April when the magnolias flower – the garden beginning to explode with springiness..


I signed up for the A to Z blogging challenge for April, to see if I had the discipline. Here is the link and the rules. So I need a theme (well, it’s not strictly necessary but it does seem to be slightly de rigeur) and the indomitable spirit to post every day bar Sundays in April.

My theme (as you might guess from the title) is places. So why somewhere in Wales that I went to once as a boy scout and of which my only memory is one of my peers shoplifting and me having to run, helter-skelter, to avoid being wrongly done for a crime I did no more than tacitly aid and abet (though I will accept two charges of eating stolen goods)?

Limericks, that’s why. My Dad loved them. It was the earliest form of poetry that I understood and enjoyed. Dad loved people giving him a first line and he would complete the rest. He told me, as a youngster that the most difficult first line he had ever been given was

‘There was a young man from Aberystwyth’

And he followed it with something like this

‘Whose friends he’d go out to get pissed with

But his girl did reject him,

Saying, just to deject him:

‘These luscious lips, you’ll not be kissed with’

He managed some better ones…

On the subject of nose pickings…

‘Nose Pickings’ said Mrs McGraw

Have practical uses galore

By rolling and folding

And carefully moulding

You can make condoms, cheap, for the poor.’

Or when he saw a statue in our garden, which we inherited when we moved in,

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A poet, cast in concrete

said, ‘I don’t wish to be indiscreet;

But it’s a bit of a sod,

Here on your tod

When the dogs piss on your feet.’

And while this many not have been his, it was a favourite for its fabulous non-rhyme

There was a young lady from Bude

Who went to swim in the lake

A man in a punt

Stuck a pole in her ear

And said, ‘You can’t swim here, it’s private’.

 So what are your favourites? Cleaner? Cleverer? Or just ones that bring back silly memories?

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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25 Responses to A to Z: A is for Aberystwyth

  1. Gorgeous spring pics! Love the limericks. I used to do them all the time when I was about ten. And I only saved about two and those are packed up in a box in storage. Your dad was quite the character, wasn’t he? That’s awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      Indeed the old bugger would have liked the epithet ‘character’ pain in the proverbial actually but dearly loved all the same. As my mother memorably remarked, to everyone’s astonishment after some particularly egregious behaviour on Dad’s part ‘You know, Desmond, I now realise who it was who put the c*** in country gentleman’. Sorry, hope that doesn’t offend!


      • Hahaha! Oh no. No offense at all. Terribly humorous. Well, epithet liked or not, it seems he was definitely someone I would have enjoyed meeting. Your mother, too. They were a pair. I enjoy hearing you talk about them.

        Liked by 1 person

      • TanGental says:

        Thanks Jessica. Yes, you would. They loved nothing better than to be surrounded by lots of people having fun. Their parties were legendary, up to the point everyone was so drunk it all began to blur)

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Autism Mom says:

    I have not heard a lot of limericks in my life (I am not sure why) but I can imagine your dad’s penchant kept his kids in giggles!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. willowdot21 says:

    Enjoying the start of your A to Z 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Rachel M says:

    To his girl, said the sharp-eyed detective,
    “It may be that my eyesight’s defective.
    Has your east tit the least bit the best of your west tit?
    Or is it the fault of perspective?”

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Archaeologist says:

    One limerick challenge I remember my father taking on, was to listen to the news on the radio, an create a limerick based on the stories, an election in Peru, funding for the Royal Opera House, developments in plastic surgery and a the work of a restorer of musical instruments. He came up with;

    A plastic surgeon from Lima,
    Thought opera the work of a screamer,
    Said I long for a peal,
    on my Glockenspiel.
    But I fear I’m a bit of a dreamer.

    Not bad for fifteen minutes work.

    Though he could never create a limerick to his satisfaction about a female athlete. He had the punchline’

    ‘And shattered her personal best’

    But the rest never came.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Unknown provenance:
    – A Young Man from United

    There was a young man from United
    Who was so extremely short sighted
    With clinical control
    He scored an own goal,
    Which made City fans so delighted!

    And not a limerick, but fun all the same:
    In Memoriam Kenneth Wood, inventor of the “Kenwood” Mixer and the Reversible Toaster

    So. Farewell then
    Ken Wood.

    Inventor of the

    Reversible the of
    Wood Ken.

    Then farewell

    E.J. Thribb, inventor of the
    Reversible Poem (½71)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You are reminding me of Pam Ayres, with all these limericks.

    I have to vote for the garden statue one. What a classic. Would have done very well on “The Wheeltappers and Shunters Social Club”.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Norah says:

    Thanks for the mirth! I can see where you get your cleverness and your sense of humour from. What a clever dad! (Both of you!)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. roweeee says:

    I love the nose pickers one and read it out to my husband and we both laughed. Our son would love it except I’m not sure whether he knows what a condom is yet and I’m not sure whether I want him to know or not quite yet. Anyway, as long as he keeps picking his nose in public, he probably won’t be needing one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      Dad did about five on nose pickings but this was my fav. He and my uncle used to send cards and poems to each other on the bogey theme. Such babies!

      Liked by 1 person

      • roweeee says:

        I’m always said growing up is overrated. Your Dad sounds fabulous and your uncle for that matter. This was probably what people did before TV took over. My Great Great Aunt was a real character. She had a budgie called Romeo who was able to recite Shakespeare are appeared in the newspapers etc and a Kookaburra who appeared at charity events and used to be on the radio at the start of the news. She was very flamboyant and quite the actress although she owned an exclusive hairdressing salon and beauty business in Brisbane with clients like the Governor’s wife and General MacArthur’s wife.

        Liked by 1 person

      • TanGental says:

        You are correct. Don’t grow up, it’s not worth the hassle.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Charli Mills says:

    Limericks were always so fun because they were silly and naughty!

    Liked by 1 person

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