So, how are you getting on with your belated Spring cleaning and
general clear-out? Brassica asked me.
It’s too difficult. Every time I investigate a box, I start reading
its contents. Today, for instance, I found a ‘Guardian’ supplement
from 2004 which was all about predictions for 2020.
Hmm…crystal ball gazing. Did they get things right? she enquired,
munching something out of her Bento box- Costamuchamoulah’s
Well, there was an article in Part Two, dated 28th September,
2004, called ‘Who Will Be Who?
Ooh, do spill the beans!
It predicted that Ioan Gruffudd would be James Bond.
You mean that guy who was Horatio Hornblower?
Yip. Timothy Dalton was Welsh, remember! So, they may have
been thinking in similar terms.
Brassie looked sceptical. She has always liked Sean Connery,
followed by Piers Brosnan.
Then it advocated Martha Lane Fox as possible Vice Chancellor
of the University of Cambridge.
Because she is big on marketing and global brands?
I was surprised that Brassie had heard of her.
Yes, students are customers now, you must realise.
What about the monarch?
Oh, they assumed The Queen would be carrying on.
Charles will be 71 then. The Queen will be 94.
Who did they think would take over from Miliband?
They didn’t know then that Ed would have been Leader!
Of course not. Who did they back?
They might be right. Could do worse. They backed David Cameron
for Leader of the Conservatives. Back then he was a fresh-faced
Chief Policy Co-ordinator, aged 37. They said he was leader of The
Notting Hill set.
I thought that was Hugh Grant.
They did mention his ‘raffish good looks.’
No, they must have mixed him up with Hugh Grant. Anyway, who
else was nominated?
Leroy Rosenior as England Football Manager; Helen Boaden as BBC
I do like their clothes, Brassie sighed.
Different Boden, I explained.
Ask me another. I pinched a sliver of sea cucumber from her
lacquered top layer.
Poet Laureate? She shut the lid.
Who?… Archbishop of Canterbury?
Canon Dr Judith Maltby.
Oh, I like her, approved Brassie. I heard her in Wintonchester
Only trouble is that she was nominated by Rev Giles Fraser.
And look what happened to him.
(Photo by Kaihsu Tai)
Brassie chewed reflectively. Wasn’t he the Dean of St Paul’s?
The one that is a Real Christian.
Brassie has her own categories of Christians- ranging from Born
Again to Brain Dead and then, suddenly she will find one to whom
she will give a Divine Imprimatur, almost as if she is standing in the
wings at The Last Judgement as The Recording Angel.
See, in 2004, women couldn’t be ordained as bishops. So, it was quite
a bold statement, I pointed out. Mind you, I think that there were three
major groups in post-Nicene Christianity that supported women priests
in powerful positions-the Pepuzians, Priscillians and some Celtic
The Celts! Brassie spat out a fibrous shred of something vegetable.
She doesn’t like Nicola Sturgeon and doesn’t believe she should be
encouraged in any Assumption to any powerful position. (Women
can be so mean about other women, n’est-ce-pas?)
What about soap stars? She changed the subject.
(Photo by Matt Pearson)
Oh, Kevin O’Sullivan of ‘The Daily Mirror’ thought that Sonia Jackson’s
baby should be kept in the ‘Eastenders’ script and could be a future
landlady, if Barbara Windsor stopped clinging to the post.
So that was two Windsors still in power, in their estimation?
Yes. But they were wrong about that. The current landlady is Linda
Carter, I believe- though I never watch it.
I looked around Costamuchamoulah nervously.
(Photo by Portlandvillage)
I could tell Brassie was losing focus now. She was more interested in
opening the Pandora’s Box- I mean the Bento box. I wondered what she
had in there. Maybe it would be like a Goya nightmare, with all sorts of
weird and frightening creatures escaping and circling our heads. And that
was only the sociological prophecies, not the contents of her lunchbox!
She took off the top layer. Yum! Beef and noodles!
Don’t you want to know who they thought would be Governor of The
Bank of England?
Well, it was the then economic adviser to Gordon Brown.
(Photo-Wikimedia Commons. Official gov.uk portrait)
She looked sardonical. Here! Try a wasabi-flavoured forkful of this!
My throat was on fire, so I didn’t tell her Evan Davis’ recommendation:
I bet they didn’t have Bento boxes in Suttonford in 2004.