Invokes the Code of the Woosters in a snark on Canadian attitudes. What more could one ask for?
How perfectly foul.
The burden of my wide and varied acquaintance is that I will sometimes find myself committing the ghastly bloomer of recounting some sprightly anecdote to the same crowd of fellows. The lark may sing twice, but B. Wooster’s inadvertent lark imitation never can recapture the f. f. f. rapture. On the other hand, one sees the glassy-eyed multitude, tongues hanging out, adraft on a sea of boredom, positively ravening to be captivated by some master raconteur’s fund of personal narrative. Courage, Bertie, I seem to hear them say. Press on, old glabwort, they intone. And so I shall.
Though I mention, merely in passing, that I wish Jeeves would see his way clear to developing one of those app thingummies for the Wooster smart-phone to quietly and efficiently track the disbursement of anecdotage. But when I put it to him with considerable old world courtesy, the fellow met my straightforward suggestion with a nolle prosequi of the frostiest. Scarcely feudal, I must say. I urged him to summon up the blood like a good ‘un and not let his native resolution sickly o’er with the pale cast of thought, but if his response was not a raised eyebrow and cold refusal, I’m a dataminer.
Well, making it snappy and getting down to brass tacks, the gist of my tale, or gravamen if you prefer, is this:
One Boat Night—you know Boat Night, of course—I and a selection of the best and brightest of the Drones embarked on a course of manly, determined revelry that what with one thing and another, spitting on our hands and getting down to it, ended with self and company on board a liner to the Frozen North, viz., Canada. Not in unseemly haste, you understand, one step ahead of the rozzers, having committed outrages against the weal that could be brought home to us, but purely in the care-free What-Ho! spirit, if you get me.
Passing lightly over the affecting farewells between Jeeves and his young master, Jeeves having very decently toddled around with a few necessaries, and hurrying past the three shipboard romances effected by the Drones, the four shipboard bust-ups of the same effected by the same, and the hair-raising escapade of Lumpy Bodgkin-Bisset and the unknottable tie, I draw the reader’s attention to some sort of metrop. that they have over there, where all and sundry were debouched. Or rather, debarked.
Whereupon, with all the possibilities of the New World and of bustling northern boulevards before us, Catsmeat Pirbright proceed to make a perfect fathead of himself.
“Why,” said he, “this is Canada!”
“No, ass, of course it’s Canada,” he replied, “I meant to say, this is Canada! Here they hunt the Great White Snark.”
“Oh, ah,” I replied, and thanked him courteously for the information. But the goggle-eyed hellion had more in mind than bantering trivia. With loathsome elan and a deplorable can-do spirit, he chivvied the lot of us onto some sort of conveyance that rapidly conveyed us, as it were, into the desolate regions. At least the blighter had the decency to select a decentish pub as the base camp for the ordeal.
In case you are ever called to hunt the Great White Snark in a crowd of Drones, I will tell you how the thing is done. You foregather with your friends and comrades while a frothing lunatic named Catsmeat harangues you about the tedious finer points of hunting the Great White Snark. You sullenly stream out-of-doors along with your fellow sufferers. You blunder about in the dark for a bit until, a suitable interval having elapsed, you execute a quick sneak back to the pub where you again chew the fat with your boon companions all of whom, sans that plague Catsmeat, have also unerringly identified the pub as the strategic high ground positively begging to be seized.
Then, a good deal of swilling and convivial fat-chewing and the usual genial back and forth having elapsed, you suddenly pause in mid-riposte, as the air is pierced by a horrible sound reminiscent of a woman wailing for her demon-lover—one of Jeeves’ gags—whereupon, after a bit of comedy at the door, self courteously preferring to let the more robust Drones have the honor of preceding out first, the more robust Drones just as courteously preferring self to take precedence—one rushes out en masse to behold Catsmeat Pirbright staggering from the woods, face sunk into a grave pallor, horror emanating from him well into the double digits on a scale of 1 to 10. You then rally around the blighter and generously apply restoratives. His hairs all standing on end like the fretful porpentine, he warns you to flee before it is too late. It seems he had, absolutely unprepared, come upon a flock of Canadians liberally festooned with pink footer bags. Wearing them, if you take my meaning. Positively.
One understands his shock, of course. One tries to cultivate the broad, tolerant outlook, but there are limits.