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Do you ever get the feeling they might be talking about you when you read some headlines? I do. You know, those where the police are looking for a bloke they want to have a word with, who sounds a lot like you. From the photofit he looks the spitting image of that shady character you see squinting out of the bathroom mirror each morning. It makes me think I might’ve done it just thinking people might be thinking I did it. Whatever it was. The same sensation coursed through my veins when I spotted this headline: Ancient parasite discovered by University of Leicester scientists in today’s edition of the Leicester Mercury. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up and my blood ran as cold as the swimming pool at Vestry Street corporation baths used to be. I couldn’t help imagining it was an act of revenge by the journalist manning the newsdesk, who I’d likened to a “mafiosi cyborg cracking its titanium knuckles” after a recent email exchange. Visions of the editor hiring a bunch of old boffins, with shocks of frizzy grey hair, blotchy faces and soup stains down their ties, to search out an ancient parasite from Leicestershire living abroad, kept filling my head. Surely, I couldn’t be the only one? They’d bounce rays from one of them electromagnetic, laser thingammydoofer jobs, off all those spy satellites orbiting the planet day and night, till they located my gaff somewhere in Spain. You know the sort of thing that flashes and bol-oops before shooting out a pencil of light that dashes about all over the place till it finds you. Or they’d google me. Except my idea of a proper scientist is a bit outdated, as they all look like Nazi doctors these days.
And talking of ancient parasites, what’s this thing olden day kings have with car parks? In an article headed: King Henry I, like Richard III, could be buried in a car park, say archaeologists, another load of loony boffins want to dig up a car park to see if a king might might be buried under it, according to today’s Guardian. As though people back then thought it would be more convenient for future archaeologists to bury dead kings at sites where car parks might eventually be placed in the distant future, rather than burying them under hulking great skyscrapers that had yet to come into existence. I mean, as if they knew a car park would be laid on top of the grave.
“We’ll bury him here. They’re bound to invent the car in a few hundred years time, and then they’ll need car parks. They’ll probably put one here, and it’’ll make it a lot easier for them to dig him up.”
This time it’s King Henry I, who an archaeologist thinks might’ve got himself buried under Reading car park in Berkshire. Soon we’ll have so many gangs of archaeologists in Merrie England digging up car parks to look for old kings’ bones they’ll be nowhere left to park.
Copyright © 2015 Bryan Hemming
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