Saturday, July 30, 2011

And the hate mail starts – I am so chuffed!

Received today via Facebook…

Karl, having grown up on the 'wrong side of the railway track' as you suggest in Hatfield, poor and shoeless and inferiorly educated at Hatties' Junior, I feel unqualified to comment on the prose of an obviously superior, priviledged (sic) being from such an esteemed suburb as Munt Pleasant (not a typo). But you did ask for feedback. Your ramblings are reasonably humorous but amateurish - hence the reason Godwin et al's efforts are vastly superior to yours and have enabled them to profit from their works, whereas ..... well, don't give up your day job just yet mate..!! I wish you luck though, I am sure a few whenwes like R.O. (a N. suburbs man himself) will splash out a few of their hard-earned pennies on your book.

The Times cryptic crossword is very difficult. I haven’t a clue what they are going on about. But, I recall reading years ago, the winner of that year’s crossword competition, after solving it in about 9 minutes, said along these lines…
‘It is easy. Once you know how the cryptic creator clicks, the answers are inevitable!’

So, my campaign is working. (By the way, for non Rhodies, ‘chuffed’ means to be extremely pleased - such as dropping your pencil onto the floor at school deliberately so you could look up Miss Fletcher’s skirt and get a glimpse of some spider legs.)

There was a rampant Whites Only ‘English style’ social structure. Class systems ring a bell? This, I noticed, is never addressed in any memoir from Rhodesians. It existed. How I recall when Mount Pleasant High had any match against Cranbourne High; it was simply acknowledged as a necessary slaughter.

Was I lucky to go to Mount Pleasant High? Forget it, I was B stream and we got the B and C stream teachers. They did their job admirably, sometimes not.

As the novelist Edmund White, once said
‘good writing is about bearing witness to uncomfortable facts.’

So. Look very carefully, and not just between the lines. There are gems of cryptic knowledge, much disguised humorously, but it is there. Many a line will confuse you…Am I for real or what? And that is the trick I hope to perform, for whilst many will cringe, this is a part of the history of Rhodesia…Albeit, hidden, just as is was in those days.

Any FAQs?

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