R: Justice League International #19 (Nov. 1988), art by Kevin Magure and Joe Rubinstein
(Click picture to Guy-size)
Dedicated to SallyP...Happy birthday, Sally!
London Eye transformed into Fantastic Four advertEye, Eye, Eye. I know you're a working Londoner. Like everybody else in my favorite city, you have to pull in extra jobs to make ends meet. Everyone's proud of that neo-Churchillian "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" philosophy. But honestly, Miss Eye...renting yourself out as a billboard to promote a superhero movie? Oh, my, Eye. Oh my.
The hub of the London Eye was transformed this week with the addition of a two-ton PVC representation of the Silver Surfer from the new Fantastic Four movie. The London Eye features in the film Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer which opens at cinemas this Friday as the Silver Surfer saves the wheel and its passengers from disaster.
It took six days to assemble and install the figure which is secured to 32 steel brackets.
The PVC Silver Surfer turns his back on the South Bank. From Jubilee Gardens the figure is just a silhouette; for the full effect it is necessary to view the Eye from north of the river.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a good ham.or
It was the best of times; it was the worst of hams.or
Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded ham that has gone off.I could go on all day like this, but let's talk about Quick Service.
'You bought it, Sally," said Mrs Steptoe accusingly.Wodehouse fans or careful readers of this blog will have immediately spotted that as another version of the 'I've nothing against his morals, but he can't do hair' line in Pearls, Girls, and Monty Bodkin, and Wodehouse will return to the same joke again and again. And it still tickles me pink every time. In fact, since I've spotted the second occurrence of this joke in my Wodehouse a Week project, let's start tallying it through use of the handy 'I've nothing against his morals' counter I'll place in these reviews every time I spot it. Current number: 2. It'll go up in the coming weeks, trust me.
Sally was unable to deny the charge.
'I thought it was bound to be all right," she pleaded in defence. 'It came from the best people in London.'
'The question of their morals,' said Mrs Chavender, 'does not arise. They may, as you say, be the best people in London, though that isn't saying much. My point is that they sell inferior ham.'
A cheery 'Hoy!' broke the stillness, and she turned to see the very person she had been thinking about. Valets did not as a rule saunter about the gardens of Claines Hall in the quiet evenfall, but nobody had told Joss Weatherby that.Of course, Joss isn't immediately knowledgeable of the fact that Sally's engaged, which is likely to throw a spanner in his comparing her to a summer's day. There's a lovely device Wodehouse uses usually at least once a book: he ends a chapter on an absolute cliffhanger of a startling revelation through dialogue, followed by complete small talk, with no immediate depiction of how devastating or surprising this revelation must be to the party of the second part. It's a wonderful Wodehouse quirky touch, and he puts it to great use at the very end of Chapter 12 where dog-walking Mrs. Chavender unwillingly lets loose the truth and then digresses while we're left to imagine Joss's jaw hanging to his shoes:
'So there you are!' he said. 'Do you know, in this uncertain light I mistook you for a wood nymph.'
'Do you always shout "Hoy!" at wood nymphs?'
'I suppose you know that valets aren't supposed to shout "Hoy!" at people?'
'You must open a conversation somehow.'
'Well, if you want to attract, for instance, Mrs Steptoe's attention, it would be more suitable to say "Hoy, madam."'
'Or "Hoy, dear lady!'"
'Yes, that would be friendlier.'
'Thanks. I'll remember it.' He joined her at the wall, and stood scrutinizing the fish for a moment in silence. The evening was very still. Somewhere in the distance, sheep bells were tingling, and from one of the windows of the house there came the sound of a raucous voice rendering the Lambeth Walk. Despite the shirt, Joss had left Mr Steptoe happy, even gay. 'This is a lovely place,' he said.
'I'm glad you like it.'
'An earthly Paradise, absolutely. Though mark you,' said Joss, who believed in coming to the point, 'a gas works in jersey City would be all right with me, so long as you were there. A book of verses underneath the bough'
The quotation was familiar to Sally, and she felt it might be better to change the subject.
'By the way,' said Mrs Chavender, pausing at the door, 'did I understand you to say you loved Sally?'And...end of chapter. How can you not flip the page quick as a flash after a cliffhanger like that?
'Well, I don't know if it's going to affect your plans, but she told me this morning, when we were driving to Lewes, that she was engaged to this Lord Holbeton you may have seen pottering around the place. All right, all right ,all right,' said Mrs Chavender, as the imperious summons sounded once more from above, 'I'm coming, I tell you. The way these darned Pekes keep you on the jump, you'd think they thought you went around in spiked shoes and running shorts.'
'My God!' said Joss, struck by an unnerving thought. 'Do you realize that if I hadn't overslept that morning, we should never have met?'Need another lesson? Why, of course. Apply yourself, dear friends, to the lesson of Howard Steptoe, former boxer:
'No. I was supposed to be at the office at ten. If I had got there on time, I should have been gone long before you arrived. But owing to having stayed up late, shooting craps, I didn't clock in until eleven. What a lesson this should teach to all of us.'
'To shoot craps?'
'That, of course. But what u was really thinking of was how one ought never to be punctual. From now on, I shall make a point of always being at least an hour late for everything.'
'Including the wedding?'
'Mr Steptoe was a boxer?'The lesson? It's simple, of course, and Dorian will back me up on this: when you're facing off against a boxer named Wildcat, you will get the tar whaled out of you.
'Preliminary bouts on the Pacific coast. The first time I ever saw him was at the American Legion stadium in Hollywood. He was getting the tar whaled out of him by a fellow called Wildcat Wix.'