Gary Strachan – "Write" Said Fred

Off The Wall Essays From Deep Within A Capricious Mind

Odyssey

Relentless precipitation is this morning’s meteorological guest in Leeds 15. Consequently, I’m witnessing a Zeusian deluge akin to that written about in Genesis, where Noah, his family and two of every animal (apart from the snargle) avoided drowning by boarding an ark.

The snargle a species of wild cat, which folklore journals could run as fast backwards as it could forwards. An evolutionary ‘gift’ which meant that, without possessing eyes in the back of its head, it had a habit of crashing arse first into laurel bushes.

Anyhow, this flawed species progression mattered not when they became extinct after one of the pair, in possession of expired travel papers. was denied access to the ark by the overly-officious Noah.

This legendary obstructiveness by the vessel’s captain causing numerous problems during the arks odyssey around the flooded globe. His inflexible edicts including the banning of mooing during daylight hours (apart from the chickens), contrarian animals being denied the right to join the ship’s choir and the insistence of a password to gain entry to the dining room.

Noah’s intransigence, though, was well-meaning and we should not forget he also bore a kindly streak. Behaviour which saw him allow his animal passengers to indulge in ‘Dress Down Fridays’; along with granting them permission to collect fridge magnets, as long as they weren’t blasphemous or containing poor grammar.

As you’ll be able to tell from the above paragraphs, my recollection of Noah and his ark story is unreliable. But it could’ve been worse – After all, it’s not unknown for me to mix up Genesis’ flooding narrative with that of another historically important wooden vessel, the Trojan horse.

These the times of confusion when my capricious mind tries to convince me the Trojan horse was a wooden dry sanctuary for two of every global creature (except the snargle).   Misinterpretations which also proffer that during the Trojan War, Greeks clandestinely gained access to Troy by hiding inside a bloody big ark. Mercifully, these times of historical confusion are few and far between.

Thankfully, I ordinarily recall the story attributed to Odysseus and his Greek army colleagues, who hid inside a wooden horse to gain entry to the city of Troy, subsequently overcoming the Trojan army.

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Odysseus the legendary Greek king who not only led his nation to victory in a ten year conflict with their Trojan nemesis’, but was also inspired the moniker of 1970s/80s US group Odyssey, along with the Odyssey Greek restaurant on Otley Road, Cleckheaton.

My neighbour old Frank*** informs me that on Odysseus’ way home after sampling victory in Troy his twelve ships were blown off course by strong winds and unforgiving seas. Storms powerful enough to jettison the Greek king’s fridge magnets and impressive European city shot glass collections into the grey seas.

*** – I’m not sure why he’s called Old Frank as he’s only 28 years of age!….. Which is a good 20 years younger than Young Frank!

Anyhow I digress!………

Blown off course, as the storm’s ferocity diminished the Greek armada were captured by one eyed Cyclops Polyphemus, who proceeded to eat several of the crew. To avoid any further deaths of his men, Odysseus and the remaining sailors got the Cyclops drunk on wine and blinded him as he slept. Subsequently escaping in their boats without picking up the cheque for dinner, or the wine.

On finally arriving home, the Greek island of Ithaca, Odysseus was greeted as a hero by islanders. During a homecoming feast in his honour, his people sacrificing village idiot Arthius to thank heavens their revered king had returned unscathed. Joy enhanced by news one of the local tavernas was holding a celebratory ‘3 for 2’ offer on ouzo.

I’m not sure why Frank felt the need to tell me all this. However, after a night listening to his tales of Greek Mythology, it’s safe to say I won’t be going for another drink with him anytime soon!

 

Categories: Blogs, fiction, humour, parody

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