Wiffle Lever To Full!

Daleks, Death Stars and Dreamy Sci-Fi Nostalgia…

Extracts from Bob’s 1984 Diary… Volume 339

Tuesday 4th December 1984

I got up at 8.00 and at 8.45 Doug, Gaz and Burton came and we went to school. First was English, then RE, then English, then Drama. At 12.00 I had dinner, then I got a merit in French.

Next were maths and HE, and at 3.40 I came home. At 5.00 I had tea, at 5.10 I watched Star Trek, then I played outside. At 7.30 I watched Give us a clue, at 8.00 I watched Benny Hill, at 9.00 I went to bed.

Are you sitting comfortably? No? I’m not surprised with that posture. Go and get yourself a proper cushion for that chair, or you’ll be storing up all kinds of back problems for later life. Anyway, time to press on with Part 2 of ‘The Legend’, the strange, seafaring story I wrote for Mrs McDonald’s English class around this time. Remember, in Part One… actually don’t remember at all, just go and check yesterday’s entry. What do you think this is, Jackanory?


I walked to the castle and offered no resistance when the guards captured me. I was taken down a long corridor and into a large, brightly lit chamber. Sat on a throne was a well-built bearded man.

‘I am Atlas, Lord of Atlantis!’ bellowed the man. ‘Explain your business here on my island!’

I explained the situation as well as I could. The Lord of Atlantis listened intently to me, then leaned back with a smug grin on his face.

‘Liar’ he said, almost under his breath. ‘Take him away’.

I was grabbed by two guards and led back down the corridor. We marched down a smaller passage to the right for a long time and eventually I was thrown into a cold, dark cell. The air was damp on my skin and the smell of rotting flesh was all around. I shouted out for a long time, but gave in when my voice went hoarse.

Some hours later, a shadow fell across the rocky floor. A cloaked and hooded figure appeared, produced a rough key and inserted it into the lock of my cage-like prison. In seconds I was free and stumbled thankfully into the corridor.

The man did not move or speak for a few seconds but then he seemed to glide down the corridor and he gestured for me to follow. Having no choice, I followed him down the passage.

We left the castle, not by the portcullis but by a network of tunnels that ended on the hillside. Once out on the hill, my rescuer spoke.

‘My name is Kelnor’ he said. ‘I am a traitor to the city of Atlantica but I am not at all bad. You have no place here and I must return you to your own time’.

The shouts of men cut through the air. Rushing out of the castle were twenty or thirty sentries.

Kelnor began to chant. ‘Ebor foris racum! Notti forii gratia! Ebor sonaris selocum!’

With those words, everything seemed to swirl into a giant whirlpool. I caught images of sentries and blackness, then there was blackness.

‘604 ,miles off Bermuda, Captain’ said a voice. I was back in the submarine.

‘Sir?’ came the voice again.

I looked around. Everything was normal. But in my mind I could clearly see a castle, tall and grand, on a desolate hillside.

I got a rare Mrs McDonald merit for that! I’ve just been trying to work out if Kelnor’s chants are an adaptation of something filthy, but – amazingly – I can’t derive even the slightest bit of smut from them. They actually look reasonably authentically Latin, although I must have made them up. Anyway, when I’m a millionaire, I’m going to hire Bernard Cribbins to read that back to me from the comfy armchair in the front room.

(I absolutely LOVE the completely unnecessary funky little fill 13 seconds into the above clip – musicians just can’t bloody well help themselves can they? I bet the bassist pulled his best Bootsy Collins face as he did that. Then lit up a jazz cigarette and started telling stories about when he worked with Jeff Beck, maaan)

Meanwhile, in RE, Mrs Mainwaring-Taylor was still hammering a few obscure gods into our befuddled craniums… (and I’m sure you can get at least three Led Zeppelin song titles out of the previous sentence)

4th December 1984 – Gods of everyday life

In many societies there were a large number of gods, each with its own function in life. There were gods of rain, fire, wind, thunder etc. There were some gods who were reponsible for the skills of mankind such as the Mayan god ITZAMNA who invented writing and their goddess IXCHEL who looked after weaving and cooking.  This belief in many gods is called POLYTHEISM.

No mention, sadly, of the main Teesside god – AULDGADGE, the God of Believing That No Good Whatsoever Will Ever Come Of Following Middlesbrough Football Club, and ‘They’ll Only Let You Down, Son’. His disciples meet in a council allotment every matchday, in the drizzle, and repeat the sacred incantation ‘They don’t come to see me when I’m bad… they don’t come to see me when I’m bad…’ while repeatedly hitting themselves in the face with a length of timber.



  fiercelyfuzzy wrote @

I remember Mrs Man-Tank. Large lady who smelt strongly of Johnsons Baby Powder.

  Ian Farrage wrote @

You got way too close……..
with Mr Porritt for example, you could smell the tabs and Polo mint mix from just being in the same room.

  bobfischer wrote @

Teachers’ individual smells is worth a blog all of its own. I still can’t drink a cup of black coffee without thinking of the youthful Mr Parker, who seemed to seemed to fuel himself with nothing else.

There were always a gigantic bundle of betting slips in his wallet, as well. I still have fond memories of the A-Level English lesson we spent watching the 3.15 from Chepstow on the big wooden TV on the trolley.

Brilliant teacher, though. Top bloke as well.

  The Reverend Marcus Carcass wrote @

Smell is the most evocative of all the senses, my child!

I once laboured under a rural Dean who smelled very strongly of iceberg lettuce.

Even today I will never choose the Caesar salad at an ecumenical luncheon.

  bobfischer wrote @

Did he show you the tip of his iceberg?

  The Reverend Marcus Carcass wrote @

No, though don’t ask me why. Just Cos.

  bobfischer wrote @


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