When you’re still on the net by Daniel P. Dern
Entries Tagged 'The Nightmare Song' ↓
Author: Andrew Crowther
When you’re under attack at the front and the back from some low, penny-pinching nonentities,
It is hardly worth while to attempt with a smile to remember their worthless identities:
For your brain is immense, and no person of sense would be foolish enough to gainsay of it;
You’re before the Committee, and now, more’s the pity, it seems that they’re making a day of it.
They’re asking you questions and making suggestions about your official expenses:
They’re so very officious, so sneaky suspicious, you’d think they were doing a Census.
They’re discussing wallpapers and similar capers, and laugh when they think they’ve been funny –
Which doesn’t distract you from noting the fact that the one thing they care for is money.
You answer the lot and you tell them what’s what without losing your temper or screaming,
But it’s so deathly dull, you’re bored out of your skull and you find yourself idly day-dreaming.
You find in your dream that you suddenly seem to be stuck on a ferry from Trondheim,
And down in the water you notice Cole Porter is synchronised-swimming with Sondheim.
The rest of the crew, and the passengers, too, all appear to be starring in _Showboat_,
While Gloria Swanson, Bob Hope, and Ben Johnson are drifting below in a row-boat.
They’re arguing over the best route to Dover (by Cromarty, Firth or Utsere?):
They fail to agree on the best of the three, so they choose to go via Madeira.
With Ben Johnson rowing, they set themselves going, and soon disappear in the distance;
With a flash and three cheers Richard Dawkins appears and attempts to dispute your existence.
The vision dissolves and a whirlpool revolves, as the very best dreams in this manner do,
And next thing you know you are in a chateau with a sign on the door that says “Xanadu”.
There’s mould on the ceiling, the wallpaper’s peeling (of course – it’s a B & Q pattern):
From foundation to slating it needs decorating to make it a place fit to chat in.
So, after some smart work, you fill it with artwork – some Breughels, Picassos and Turners –
And fill the Library with works by John Carey, Hall Caine, T.H. White and Lord Berners;
When all this is netted it’s viewed and then vetted by critics in terms that are fervent.
The tableware’s gold, all the furniture’s old, and the plumbing is worked by a servant.
You ransack the nation for all that’s palatian, to make it the peak of perfection:
A delight to the eye that would rival Versailles if it had an impartial inspection.
You put in some candles an’ find Peter Mandelson looking it over and grinning –
He thinks that your home would look great in the Dome – but you wake up to find the world spinning –
And while you’ve been asleep they’ve declared you a creep with a snobbish disdain for the poor and the plain, who believes it bad taste to be suddenly faced with the facts of expense and of monet’ry sense, when you’ve always assumed the polite and well-groomed were the only worthwhile people on this great isle, only now all your sneers are misjudged, it appears, for your standing is sadly diminished –
But it isn’t all gloom: you may now leave the room, for the session’s been long – and that goes for this song – and thank Christ that they’re both of ’em finished!
Author: Jeremy Hele
Note from author: W.S Gilbert’s Chancellor in “Iolanthe” may have had his nightmare in a ‘very small second class carriage’, mine is in an aeroplane.
If you’re travelling far, beyond reach of your car
and no railways will coincide their ways
With the end of your trip, and you can’t find a ship,
You’ve no choice but to go to the Airways.
Now, for double the fare, you can travel by air,
and for Hindus and Jews they will cater;
From Madras to L.A., you can fly in day
and your stomach arrives a week later.
For planning your ticket, the computer’s so quick it
can work out diverse permutations;
Thus your trip to Japan, can call in at Sudan
and each of the United Nations.
Airport roads systems twist and all seem to consist
of crossovers, ramps without function,
Roundabouts like a fair, and some bridges to spare;
a regular spaghetti junction.
Then your car you must park, walk for miles in the dark,
and the trolleys have all gone off shopping;
Or you’re left high and dry, with a lightning goodbye
as the Airport won’t tolerate stopping.
When you check your bags in, she’ll look up with a grin
and tell your booking got twisted;
But you needn’t look ill, you can go via Brazil,
or gamble on being wait-listed.
Your next place to stop is the duty-free shop
and with goodies you’ll stock up ‘ere take-off.
But the prices all prove, that the tax they remove,
they replace by increasing their rake-off.
Now you’re ready to go, and a voice tells you so
with a noise like a mangled steel moron.
Or you think you can hear, but it’s not very clear
if that plane is the one you think you’re on.
When you get to your seat, there’s no room for your feet
as your neighbour’s brief case has obtruded.
Your head gets a crack from the overhead rack,
from which your small case is excluded.
Everyone is then shown, in a bored monotone
what to do when the oxygen’s cut off.
And the music, which serves to soothe jumpy nerves,
when you need it, at take-off, is shut off.
So you hear the ice clink and you ring for a drink
as your nerves have all started to quiver,
But its then that you find there’s a child just behind
who is kicking you hard in the liver.
When you saw that brochure, it told you for sure
that the food would be really fantastic;
When it comes on the tray, it is quite hard to say
if its made out of cardboard or plastic.
Don’t try counting sheep, as your efforts to sleep
almost for sure be aborted;
The pillows are small and they’re no good at all
and your neck has to stay unsupported.
You’ll awake from that dream to an ear-splitting scream
from a baby, who gives you no warning.
Then in case you’re dejected, a movie’s projected
at two forty five in the morning.
So at last you arrive, far more dead than alive,
and your stomach gets over the landing;
But whichever you choose, its the slowest of queues
and it seems to take hours, when you’re standing.
If you’re lucky, your cases all reach the right places
and by customs will soon be inspected;
But it’s just not your day -they’ve been sent to Norway
and will now have to be re-directed
So, from Perth to Jakarta, though they say it’s smarter
it’s quicker, there’s no real denying.
But I’d rather by far, just not go to Qatar,
as for me, there is no fun in flying