Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Reggie Tyrwhitt Illustrations

The North Lincolnshire market town of Barton upon Humber has seen many illustrious names over its long and distinguished history. Names such as Isaac Pitman (inventor of Pitman's shorthand), Samuel Wilderspin (pioneer of infant education), Ken Harrison (cartoonist of Desperate Dan fame), and Chad Varah (founder of the Samaritans) are just a few of such illuminaries in the town's annals.

Now, we have another star continuing to keep Barton on Humber firmly on the map as home to men of distinction. Without further ado, allow me to introduce Reggie Tyrwhitt, a man to whom the pencil is but a sixth digit of his right hand; a man who will faithfully portray your family castle (whether it be Georgian townhouse, country retreat, or resplendent folly) in splendid reproductions of lead, ink and watercolour; a man who will capture the idiosyncrasy of your dinner party, the foibles of your shooting party, or the disgrace of your golfing match in less than the time it takes for you to reach for a pencil-sharpener...

Reggie Tyrwhitt, who has the distinction of having exhibited at the Hungerford Gallery, is now available to illustrate (at a very reasonable price) your greetings cards, postcards, book-plates, invitations, menus and letterheads, etc. in a unique style of your choosing.

Take a peak today at his website and start planning your new stationery for 2010!

Reggie Tyrwhitt Illustrations

Now, who do I know who could illustrate my next poetry collection....

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Misprint of the Week

The cruise company, P&O, take pride in the presentation of all aspects of their service. However, I thought that the following announcement, printed in the ship's daily newspaper (Horizons) during my recent cruise on Artemis, was taking their concern for the welfare of their passengers just a little too far:

We are pleased to advise that the spare parts for the aft lift has arrived onboard and repairs will commence forthwith. Between now and Barbados all ship's lifts will also undergo survey and safety inspections, which means that all ship's lifts will be subject to interruptions in service from time to time. Every effort will be made to minimise disruption. We apologise for any incontinence caused.'

My imagination keeps conjuring up a picture of passengers attempting to climb the stairs with their legs crossed...

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

All Things are Relative

Mr Bargewick is not a man known for his sense of humour; at least not by me within the timeframe of the twenty years during which he has been a patient of mine.

I am uncertain as to whether his origins are truly of Lincolnshire descent, or whether, some seventy something years ago, he was hewn out of North Yorkshire limestone and then transported to the territories south of the Humber River. What is very evident is that he doesn't like communicating. Once called from the waiting room, his face assumes the appearance of a foreboding, craggy outcrop of fissured rock. Couple that with his verbal ability to articulate each word as though it was meant to be the first syllable of the next, with the resulting sound drawn out into rambling sentences devoid of punctuation or, indeed, any discernable structure, and all delivered at a volume that makes an earth worm sound positively noisy, and you will start to have some idea of the character of the man I am alluding to.

One thing is for certain: I have never before seen him smile. It took a recent, prolonged cold snap, with snow falling over several days, for me to see that a sense of humour, albeit dour, lay beneath the rugged exterior. However, first I must tell you about the weather.

Like much of the United Kingdom, Lincolnshire has just seen its heaviest snow falls for some thirty years. Over a couple of weeks, each day had seen new layers added to those of previous days, causing considerable inconvenience to everyone, and not least to those living in rural areas. Mr Bargewick is one such person, living in a village six miles from the market town. The fact that he had been able to get to the surgery on time for his appointment was commendable, and I made a suitably appreciative comment.

"Aye," he mumbled. "It's been a long time since we've had such a sharp frost."

Momentarily speechless, I turned to the window, beyond which the wall was surmounted by a layer of snow some six inches thick. Returning my gaze to my patient, I shook my amused head, and replied:

"When I was in Ireland last year and happened to be soaked by a deluge which the locals dismissed as nothing more than a 'slight mist', I thought then that I had heard the best of understatements. However, yours beats that hands down. That, Mr Bargewick," I continued, gesticulating to the view beyond the window, "is six inches of is not a 'sharp frost'!"

I grinned with incredulity, and an amazing thing happened. Mr Bargewick's face burst into a broad smile and for the first time in twenty years, I heard him give a deep chortle of laughter, as though even he was amused at the dryness of his own wit.

In life, some nuts are harder to crack than others. People are much the same. Some wear their emotions on their sleeves, whilst others have solid defences. It has taken twenty years to find a crack in Mr Bargewick's hard exterior. However, it was definitely worth the wait, as it is unique moments like that which add to the delight of general medical practice.

The Power of Love

Looking through my writing archives for the month of March, I came across the following article, initially published in my weekly column for...