Saturday, April 23, 2011

God for Shakespeare England and St George

Happy St George's Day! The Irish have St Patrick, The Scot's St Andrew and Burn's Night and the Welsh St David and everybody forgets poor old England and St George.

When I was a teenager I always bought a red rose to sport on the 23 April and I felt special. I love being English although now I am really more of a New Zealander. I haven't been back for over 16 years and I expect it has changed a bit.

This year 23 April has outdone itself. Not only is 23 April St George's Day but also Shakespeare's birthday as well and this year it is Easter Saturday to boot. It is also my beloved Grandfather's birthday. Pop Thorpe who was born the son of a railway wagoner, that means he built railway wagons that held coal in the slums of Manchester, rose by hard work and industry to become the first graduate of the London School of Economics, became Governor of the Ceylon Railways nearly bought Wembley Stadium  and in 1948 was chief account for the 1948 Olympics.

23 April was also my only introduction to Jonathan  Miller. In about 1963 ITV were looking for a young woman to join Miller on a chat show and teenagers of my age were encouraged to write a short article on any subject on the front of any paper on the 23 April. I wrote about the date! I wrote well even at 17 and was shortlisted. Of course when I turned up Mr Miller must have had  a fit. I was not the OxBridge student that was expected. In fact I think they thought that I hadn't actually written my article but I had.

I should have got Miller on to Britten and 'The Turn of the Screw' and he might have been impressed.

So to all true English persons everywhere a Happy St George's Day!

No comments:

Post a Comment