A great man, unjustly swept under the carpet by the fickle steamroller of public opinion. Pumpy Narkwell Airport has been replaced by a fibreglass pig. The Narkwell spatula has been superseded by more modish but less functional designs. You can search supermarkets the world over without finding a single Pumpy Biscuit on sale.
Worst of all, despite months of public protest and strong representations by Dame Judi Dench, ex-Prime Minister Spencer Perceval and Cosmo, Huddersfield Town FC have taken away the statue of Pumpy that used to stand proudly outside the John Smith's Stadium and had it melted down in order to make their chairman an extra pair of bronze horns! I would go on, but I'm too upset.
Hopefully, you feel as strongly about this as I do - if so, please pledge your support to the Reinflate Pumpy campaign here
Another inspirational Pumpy story, from the WW1 diaries of Private Zbgnwyv Bznywlkwsky of the 45th Galician Consonants.
"It was 1915, and the Russian attempt to enamel the Emperor had thankfully failed, resulting in stalemate. We were dug in and stuck there, short of men, and worst of all, the Trench Carrots that we'd planted in hitherto inaccessible portions of the Company Sergeant were proving elusive. The Russians, using their steam ears, could hear our pathetic efforts to lure them out of hiding and cruelly mocked us - "Ha ha! Carrot Coaxers!" - and we were unable to reply, seeing as we'd been banished to Naughty Man's Land and weren't allowed guns until we'd learned to play with them nicely.
"When will it end?", I asked myself, turning my tear-stained eyes to the uncaring skies, where shells burst like miniature stars amongst the barrage balloons, occasionally illuminating the ragged, limp form of some unlucky soldier, entombed forever in mud and rusty wire. Men shouted, bullets whined about my ears (they weren't that bad) and above me, I could hear the whirring of the giant Louisa May Alcott the Engineers had sent up to provide eggs and ward off scrofula.
Just then, when I couldn't take it any more, Pumpy Narkwell appeared to me, surrounded by a nimbus of bicarbonate of soda, handing me three barnacles and informing me that accessory olfactory cortical areas are portions of the human amygdala that are homologous to those areas in other species that receive afferents from the accessory olfactory bulb. Thus inspired, I squirted semolina up my nose, leapt to my feet and broke through the Russian lines, scattering all before me and advancing as far as Vilnus, where, by forcing my wife to impersonate a lawyer pretending to be a horse, I brought the war to an end at a single stroke"
In this month's edition of Canvas Fiend magazine, right after our stupendous NAUGHTY LATHE IN CLAMMY HAMMOCK centrefold, Pumpy Narkwell invites Pulg for an exclusive tour around his beautiful home!
"I am met at the door by the incandescent magnificence that is Pumpy Narkwell, accompanied by what is either a lump of cod balancing on a skateboard, the battle of Rorke's Drift, or his wife. He ushers me inside, pausing only to exchange a series of slaps, insults and intestinal gurgles with his horde of repulsive children. I remark how proud he must be to have fourteen daughters who exactly resemble Winston Churchill, down to the smallest detail, at which he exclaims angrily that he's been invaded by were-Churchills again, makes a noise like a tapir making indifferent love to an invisible banjo and storms out, exuding the easy charm that has made him such a success. It looked like earwax to me, but if he says it's charm, charm it is. Just then, a distinguished-looking Frenchman with a snow-white moustache in a military uniform (and how he got a uniform to fit his moustache I'll never know) enters the room, salutes and leaves.
"Who's that?", I enquire of Mrs Narkwell, who replies, "Marshal Foch"
"Who's Marshal Foch?"
"Peek through Madame Fifi's bedroom window around 7.30pm and find out for yourself, mate"
RHUBARB IS GOOD FOR YOU.
LONGEARS INVESTIGATION BUREAU PROUDLY PRESENTS - THE THRILLING ADVENTURES OF SPACE BISHOP "PUMPY" NARKWELL AND HIS LOYAL SIDEKICK, SERGEANT SENNOKOT!
The story so far: In hot pursuit of an extremely valuable chicken, Space Bishop Narkwell and Sergeant Sennokot have journeyed to the planet Sexy Seculon, only to be waylaid by Sinister Rubber Feminists!
"Goodness gracious, Sergeant! We're trapped! What are we supposed to do in situations like this?"
"Don't be disgusting - they can hear you, and besides, that isn't what feminist means, anyway. This is terribly compromising for a man in my position!"
"Not that sort of position, you filthy military twerp! Do something!"
"Orright, Yer Grace - I'll give 'em a bit of the old laxati-fu! 'Ere, this'll keep you regular, you latex-coated harpies!"
POW! WHAM! SOCKO! BOOINGG! SQUEEEK! SQUEEAK! *TEE HEE!!!*
"Lummee, chief! I'm just bouncing off 'em! Use your Atomic Crozier, or it's curtains for us!
"I... I... It's not working! The capacitoral distifiblurator is at 0.11 zogribules and somebody's inverted the sub-distal auxiliary wukk drives - BUT WHO?!"
"MYNAHA! HA! HA! HAHAHA! MYNAHAHAHAHAHA! HA! HA! HAHAHAHHAHAHA!"
"My goodness me! Gyne Dales! YOU!!!"
"Yes, Narkwell, and now I have you right where I want you! MYNAHAHAHAHA! Andrea! Shulamith! Fetch the Specially Adapted Vehicle For Extracting Pious Testosterone From Newly Strained Clergy and turn power to triple maximum! You shall not survive this day, you patriarchal lust-bucket, you! PREPARE TO DIE!!!"
Can Narkwell and Sennokot get out in time for the General Synod? Will the Valuable Chicken escape? Are the Sinister Rubber Feminists dry-clean only or will a wipe down with a damp cloth suffice? How many beans make five? Tune in next week to find out!!!!