That Slugworth, He Was The Worst!

I don’t use the word propensity much. In fact, you could say I have the propensity to not utilise the word propensity. I’ve nothing against the colloquialism per sa, however, I have the tendency to proffer the word tendency in its place.

Alternately, I sometimes have the inclination to use inclination as a substitute for propensity or tendency. On a rare occasion, I’ve had the predisposition to replace propensity, tendency and inclination with the term predisposition.


“Why this insight into your vocabulary, Gary?” I here you cry…… Or at least those who haven’t the propensity (perhaps I use it more than I thought) to get bored and leave after the first two paragraphs.

“Why subject us to your self-indulgent wordplay. What of the colloquialisms you have the proclivity to utilise? Not to mention those words dusted off, lovingly polished before you give them a rare venture out?” I also hear you cry…. Oh, you’ve gone! Never mind!

Like Grandpa Joe in ‘Charlie & The Chocolate Factory’, the word propensity doesn’t get out much. However, unlike Grandpa Joe, the pre-requisite for propensity’s venture from my neurological ‘corridors of uncertainty’ isn’t finding a golden ticket in a bar of chocolate.

That being said, I couldn’t rule out saying something like “I can’t believe I’ve won a golden ticket. I don’t normally have the propensity to buy Wonka bars!” if I mirrored Charlie’s lucky win.

In those circumstances that would invalidate my thoughts in the previous paragraph…… Although, I’d more likely have the inclination to replace propensity with tendency in the above exclamation…… or inclination even.

If I did win a ticket to venture around Willy Wonka’s factory of confectionery joy, I wouldn’t be able to take along my Grandad Jack or Grandad Charlie as they are sadly long gone.

It would probably be a blessing, though, as they were both fond of a giggle, so we’d no doubt get thrown out for one of them winding up the Oompah Loompah’s.

On being thrown out, I’d then have the dilemma of whether to give my ever lasting gobstopper to Slugworth or go home and play subbuteo.

I know, I could give Slugworth the gobstopper, then go home to play subbuteo with my granddads and split Slugworth’s bribe money!….. Sorted! …. Should, of course, those highly unlikely series of events manifest themselves.

Grandpa Joe

grandpa joe

One thing that always puzzled me about ‘Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory’ as a kid was Charlie’s grandparents. All four of them never left the double bed they existed in together for over 20 years.

Without even touching on the cleanliness issues of that, how did they go to the loo? Grandpa Joe couldn’t walk when he initially got out of bed, so he can’t have sauntered there himself. As I got older I realised Roald Dahl hadn’t wanted to touch on that subject, so used what is called artistic licence.

After all, the scene where Grandpa Joe first walks after Charlie’s win wouldn’t have worked as well if it had been written like this:-

Grandpa Joe stands up out of the bed. To everyone’s surprise he walks steadily and without need of support.

Charlie – “Grandpa Joe, you can walk!!”

Grandpa Joe – “Of course I can! I sneak out for a fag and a piss every morning at 4 am! My bladder is as regular as clockwork.”

Charlie – “Ah. So that explains the splash back on the loo floor every morning!”

Grandpa Joe – “Yes Charlie. My aim isn’t what it was, lad.”

Charlie’s Mum (Shattered after a long day’s work) – “So you’ve been able to walk all along, dad!”

Grandpa Joe – “Yes. We all (four bed bound grandparents) can!

Charlie’s Mum – “So for the last 20 years you’ve sat there in bed watching me working my arse off doing three jobs?!”

Grandpa Joe (Unrepentant) – “Yes….. There is no way you’ll get us four doing chuffing laundry!”

Charlie’s Mum – “YOU B*****DS!!”

charlies mom

I suspect the brilliant Roald Dahl won’t have touched a suggestion like that, especially in a children’s book and would have left the scene as he originally wrote it.

However, if anyone is thinking of remaking the movie lets talk numbers! ……. This invite precludes old Frank at No 92, who’s insistent that he plans to remake the movie on his 10 year old mobile phone!

I might keep old Frank in mind for the part of Grandpa Joe, though, as he often talks of his clockwork bladder.

Anyway, I best get off as my wife is complaining about my propensity (I really do you it more than I thought) to avoid helping her with the housework.

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