by Sam Mosley
always claimed that he came from Viking stock,
and indeed the area of Northumberland that he
hailed from is steeped in Viking history. I
relate a period in his life where Granpops was
behaving in a manner even loopier than our
noticed his loopy shift some time back but
decided that it was no ones business but
their own. Then, one night, she burst into our
front room, bellowing and sobbing, causing me to
miss a vital element to the plot in Coronation
Street. Finally, managing to pause the control
button, we sat Nanna down and, between sobs,
unfolded her sad tale.
somewhere in the middle of Songs of Praise,
Granpops jumped up and announced that their
marriage was illegal.
She thought he
was mucking about and replied Oh really,
well it was you who decided to be wed in the
custom of a traditional Viking marriage. Surely
even you can't forget that ceremony. I know I'll
never forget the embarrassment, even fifty years
replied. Particularly the element where you
smacked my naked buttocks six times with a
correct, Granpops concurred. For it
is the true way of the Viking. However,
continued Granpops, the reality being it
wasn't really a live Mackerel. I was actually
wielding a mackerel from a tin.
Nanna, taken aback, broke into a fresh outpouring
of sorrow: Tinned mackerel? How do you
think that makes me feel? Dirty, thats how.
Nanna with several stouts and a Brandy which
cooled her down to a slow shaking of the head and
the repeated murmur of What will
there was a possible danger of Nanna staying
at our house, we made urgent enquiries into the
whereabouts of Granpops.
A bitter Nanna
snarled Who, the love child of Spartacus?
Well, she leered, you know how he
was always going on about wanting to be
buried at sea in a burning boat? Well,
I waited till he was asleep
up, slapped her thighs and amongst a roar of
laughter announced I GRANTED HIM HIS
squeals of laughter, she pointed to nowhere
in particular and squeaked out Hes
well alight and floating down the Tyne.
stunned silence, Big Sis grabs the Yellow Pages.
Who do you contact for that then?
Police? Fire Brigade? Viking Rescue?
again and released the pause on the television.
Granpops was amongst us, singed, wet and wild.
miracle, he roared. 'I was about to enter
Valhalla when the Viking God Odin sent these kids
to rescue me in a boat they had twocked off the
river police. They thought I was doing it for
Children In Need, had a whip round and gave me £6.33...
All right, eh?