Monday, 9 April 2012

Who was Miss Watts?

(The writing has come out much smaller than I thought it would. The upper inscription says 'Campbell Lammerton', and the lower '(Drawn by) Miss Watts'. Now you can put your glasses back on/take them off.)

Going through some old papers with a view to throwing them putting them back in the drawer again I found these, done when I was a 23-year-old student.


1. Yes, I did smoke a pipe.

2. No, I did not play rugby for Scotland.

3. Yes, I did sometimes need to stand on a rostrum.

4. No, I can't remember who Miss Watts was, but Angela Gordon was gorgeous.

5. Yes, I did have a beard.


1. With some effort, I stopped smoking in June 1985. The least agonising way to give up was to concentrate on activities in which I was physically unable to smoke a pipe. For some reason I could never play the piano and smoke at the same time. I've never played better since. I gave my one and only piano recital at that time. Or take a bath, that was something else incompatible with smoking. I was very clean. My first wife did not notice that I'd given up. She gave me a 2oz tin of Gold Block pipe tobacco for the following Christmas.

2. Still no call from the SRFA selection committee. I fear it may be too late.

3. I think I may have grown since.

4. Miss Watts, if you happen to read this, you might like to remind me who you were? (No impersonations, please.)

5. I didn't keep it very long. There were inexplicable ginger hairs in it.


Rog said...

Very illuminating. The old "pipe and beard" thing.

I used to smoke Gold Block.

Z said...

I'm impressed. That level of crap present-giving takes dedication. I'm sure you looked lovely wearing your parti-coloured beard though.

(Please excuse the complete lack of sincerity in the previous sentence)

Pearl said...

Red, black, white, brown: a beard knows no color barrier.


Martin said...

Beards are strange. In the past 39 years, mine has turned from dark brown (with the odd ginger strand) through dark brown (with the odd grey strand) to white (with the odd dark brown strand). Couldn't get on with a pipe, but Redbreast Flake almost won me over.

Friko said...

Too bad, I'm not Ms Watts.

I didn't know you were back.

Rosie said...

Well, with all those digits I imagine you could play the minute waltz in forty two seconds.

Christopher said...

Pearl, how very gratifying to see you here. Thank you for calling in - the door's always open. And thank you too for your very pertinent comment. I'm sure Bluebeard felt just the same.

Martin: Yes, you can't fool a beard. Truth will out. (Can you dye beards, do you know?)

Friko: Herzlich wilkommen. I'm disappointed to hear you're not Miss Watts, but at least this reduces the identification formula to: (p/2)-1, where p = population of England.

Rosie: There are rather a lot, aren't there? - and that's only the left hand...

...are you sure you aren't/weren't Miss Watts? Please try hard to remember.

Tim said...

I had a primary school teacher called Miss Watts. It couldn't have been her though, she'd have over 100 when she drew that. Anyway, her name was Miss Wade now I think of it.
Hope that helps.

Z said...

Are you sure you're not thinking of Mis Lead, Tim?

Mike and Ann said...

I don't know if this will be of any assistance, but I think Kipling mentions her :- 'Their names were Watts and why and when and where and How and who'. No, sorry, thinking back to the previous line, all these were honest serving MEN, so that's no help.

Christopher said...

Tim, this is extraordinarily helpful and I do appreciate, indeed envy, your clear and perceptive insights. Thank you. It was perhaps foolish of me not to explain that those drawings were made in 1965/66, but I do feel that such minutiae tend to clog up and distract from the concise and bull's-eye targeted thought you evince. At least she wasn't called Miss Take.

Sir Bruin said...

Ok, it's a fair cop. I'm Miss Watts. What? you don't believe me? Must be the grey beard.

Christopher said...

Z: I was about to reply on Tim's behalf when a sudden thunderstorm meant I had to pull all the plugs. He's got friends in high places, that Tim, you know.

M 'n' A: You are a walking Golden Treasury. Thank you.

Sir B: You may well be right. As I remember she was blonde, and there was definitely something mannish about her. Maybe it was the way she rode her Norton P11. But despite what you say I don't think she was a policewoman, though.

Tenon_Saw said...

I thought you had stopped blogging - couldn't stay away eh?

Christopher said...

Hi, TS. Good to see you. No, couldn't stay away. Not very assiduous, though.