On Weymouth (100% True FACTS)
My home town has a chequered and varied history. The town brought the Great Plague to England, changed hands several times during the Civil War and was the favoured holiday haunt for "Mad" King George III, who had a caravan at Littlesea. He could often be seen in the holiday camp members' club singing 'Simply the Best' on karaoke night and proclaiming "See that? That's class, that is" to any visiting cabaret act. No wonder they thought him mental.
Such was the late King's influence on the dark arts of the seaside entertainment industry which make even circus performers look talented, the town is cursed as the acknowledged international centre for holiday camp variety.
There is, you will be sickened to hear, an annual beginning-of-season showcase where acts do a turn at the none-more-seedy Pavilion Theatre in front of all the holiday camp bosses, in the hope of getting hired. Next year, for the good of the nation, I shall be calling in the RAF to bomb the place into the sea.
Latterly, Weymouth was the departure point for the US Forces on D-Day, and it is sobering to think that Ernest Hemingway might have wenched his way through the Borough, yet still it stands.
Like any town, Weymouth has its own charming little quirks which make life there worth living. For example:
* As a result of public pressure, a local bylaw allows for a roped-off 'Jimmy Area' on the seafront where tramps and winos may congregate and ask passers-by for the price of a cup of tea. If you guess the correct amount, you win a tramp.
* Weymouth has been recognised by the United Nations as the Grab-a-Granny capital of the World.
* As a result of a clerical error, Weymouth is theoretically in a state of war with neighbouring Dorchester. If a citizen feels so inclined, he may take himself over the Ridgeway, relieve himself through any Dorchester letterbox and return to his home without fear of reprisal.
* The town was briefly an independent nation in 1957 following the constitutional controversy over the town's 'Carnival of Bumming', which saw the historic Pier Bandstand destroyed in a bizarre spacehopper accident. The Carnival then moved on to Brighton, and the rest, as they say, is history.
* Weymouth is twinned with Your Mum's bedroom, and there exists a thriving exchange programme.
Interestingly, the town's named is derived not from its position on the mouth of the River Wey - a common mistake to which many local historians have fallen foul - but because of Weymouth and Melcombe Regis' history as the centre for the European insect trade.
Merchants were paid for their cargoes by the pound, hence the name "Weigh Moth". The original scales are now positioned at the Town Gateway on the Ridgeway above Weymouth, and used as a means of ejecting fat northerners who frequently fall foul of strict European Union pie quotas.
In his novels 'Far from the Madding Crowd' and 'The Mayor of Casterbridge', Dorset author Thomas Hardy referred to Weymouth, somewhat prophetically, as "SuperExcellentScaryduckTown".
Conversely, the nearby Isle of Portland derives its name from the Old English 'Place of Terrible Cunts', a title that is still remarkably accurate to this day.
What, then, stands your home town out from the crowd?
Also: Duck News on rubbish laws.
Also also: Curs-ed footwear update *bowk*
Also also also: I've changed to Blogger Beta. Let me know if you find any glitches.