Turkey votes for ChristmasTurkey votes for Christmas

How Tenji dusts off his old school tie to obtain another Utterpants exclusive
It was a momentous and historic event when the EU agreed to talk about talks which might lead to a general discussion about the vague possibility of Turkey joining, or not joining, the exclusive EU Club situated in Grade I listed Georgian premises, on the Strand, in London

"Y’see," said club secretary Straw, from behind a cloud of cigar smoke. "Ever since 1805 when the EU club was formed, we have dealt with Johnny foreigner firmly but fairly. Take your average Froggy, give ‘em a couple of good trousers-down, no nonsense, British spankings and y’ don’t hear from them for the best part of 200 years."

He looked around the wood panelled room adorned with the portraits of Marlborough, Wellington, Churchill and Nelson. "Yes," he continued, "we don’t like to boast, but at some time or other, EU club members have probably given a good hiding to pretty much every nation on earth."
He leant forward in the plush leather chair and looked me in the eye. "Glass of port?" he asked. Without waiting for my answer he beckoned a swarthy moustachioed waiter. "Hey, you! Yes you, Johnny Turk, come over here! Two glasses of the 1856." The waiter bowed and turned to go. "No hang on, better bring us the decanter." The waiter bowed again and glided from the room.

Straw smiled as he caught the look of surprise on my face; the 1856 vintage was both rare and frighteningly expensive. "Yes," he said, "we like a few of life’s little luxuries. Gives the great unwashed something to which to aspire. Take that little Turk, gallant little feller, put up a damn good show at Gallipoli—God rot him—but a bottle of the 1856 is worth more than all of his wages for the next ten years."

The waiter returned with the decanter and two glasses. He was accompanied by a taller man in full morning dress. "Ah Fritz!" said Straw with an affable wave. "What d’ y’ want?"
"Sorry Sir," said the taller man in perfectly correct English, marred only by a barely discernible German accent. "But it is the club rules; I must ask you to sign for the 1856 vintage. The treasurer is concerned about the club budget for 1987."

Straw's face reddened with anger. "Get out!" He spat out the words with venom.
The German drew himself up to his full height and stood stiffly to attention. He fixed his gaze on some high and distant object. "It is my duty to insist that you sign, Herr Secretary Straw."
Straw leaped to his feet shouting. "Get out! God dammit. This is a Gentleman’s club Sir, and whilst I am Secretary we will behave as Gentlemen."

The German's mouth opened and closed several times.
"A Gentleman is not asked to sign a chitty by some greasy wop accountant," continued Straw. "No Sir, he is not! A Gentleman, you cabbage-eating sausage monger, is trusted to pay his bills. Go and tell that bean counter that if he wants my signature he can come and ask for it himself." Straw punctuated his outburst by jabbing his finger into the chest of the startled club official. The German clicked his heels together, bowed slightly and turned to leave. Straw took his seat. "Damned coward, sending his flunky. Bloody Italian accountant, knew it would never work."

The Turk stood by our table holding the tray and looking somewhat taken aback. "Come on laddie," said Straw. "Put the tray down and run along. You’re going to have to look a lot sharper than that if you ever want to join!" The waiter made a silent exit.

"Where were we?" asked Straw. "Ah yes, Froggy knows his place; down in the kitchen somewhere doin’ something unspeakable with garlic I shouldn’t wonder. Now, the Boche are a much trickier proposition. See that chap who just came in? Maitre D’ chappie? Bloody arrogant. Tried the same trick on the Hun, couple of good pastings, did it do the trick? Not a bit of it. They came back, rich as Croesus, tail wagging and looking for more. D' y' know what that fat Kraut, Schroeder said when I asked him if he knew the Bishop of Winchester? 'Why? Don't you like him, either?' 'No,' I told him, 'He's an awfully decent feller—but he never passes the port!' Only one thing for it, let ‘em join the club, upped the subscription till their eyes watered and then palmed them off with some bloody toy-town currency—'Micky Mouse money,' that arse Boris Johnson calls it. Swallowed it hook line and sinker. Even got them to buy their own country back off the Ruskies!"

He took another cigar from the box between us and clipped the end. As he struck a match and began to light it, a face appeared outside the window. Between puffs he said: "Don’t worry about Igor there; he’s our Hungarian window cleaner. Works all day for a slice of salami and a cabbage. One of our newer members. Very keen to get a taste of the port—if you know what I mean."

There was a quiet knock at the door and a short fat man in lederhosen entered. His hair was jet black and plastered flat against his skull with hair oil. He wore a neatly ironed, button-down, brown shirt fastened with two discrete, gold swastikas.
"Excuse me," said Straw. "Must have a word with our Austrian porter. What can I do for you, Schmidt?" He asked.
"Herr Secretary," said the Austrian, smiling obsequiously. ‘I am a little concerned about the new waiter."

"Yes, yes, spit it out man," snapped Straw. "What is it? Don’t like darkies, eh? Muslims not to your taste, I suppose? Frightened he’ll have your job are y’? Come on, out with it, man!"
"No, no, Herr Secretary, it is just that he has such a large family. He is trying to get membership for his wife, his six brothers, four uncles and seventeen cousins. I am worried the club will get too crowded and the port might run out before I get a taste."

EU Membership Deals"Look Schmitty," said Straw, rising from his chair and putting a comforting arm around the Austrian. "We all worry about that, but the thing is, if we don’t string Johnny Turk along he will set up his own club down the road with a bunch of rag-headed, religious maniacs. Good God man, you don’t want another club buying up the good vintages do you?" The Porter shook his head. "Thought not," said Straw "Don’t you worry about the port; they’ll be plenty for all of us so long as I’m secretary. Look, have you got a minute? Pull up a chair, get yourself a glass."

The telephone rang in a corner. The Turk entered, answered it and turned towards us. "Mr Straw Sir? There is a Russian downstairs enquiring about how to get on the membership waiting list..."

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Story © 2005 How Tenji. Picture and construction © 2005 utterpants.co.uk / 041005

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