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The English Are A Funny Lot
by Charlie Britten

Holidays in England

An American couple, Marvin and Martha, had heard that the British were backward, but they took a holiday in the UK anyway. They were checking into Sue’s bed and breakfast in rural Suffolk one evening during their trip, when they noticed that their room did not have an en suite bathroom. “Say,” asked Marvin, “where do we bathe?”

Sue frowned for a moment then her face cleared. “Well, we’re not on the coast here... but there’s always the river.”

Marrying the English

Maciej, who was Polish, married Tracey, a beautiful Englishwoman, and set up home with her in England. Maciej worked on improving his English language skills while Tracey did her make-up and painted her nails. 

However, a few months on, Maciej rang 999, crying, “My wife, she tries to kill me.”

“Are you sure?” asked the call-centre operator.

“She has bottle of poison. With my name on it.”

“Now, sir, have you been drinking?”

“You come to my house. Please.”

The Neighbourhood Policeman, PC Smith, was sent to investigate. Maciej ushered him inside and up the stairs to the bathroom. “See, see,” he whispered, pointing to a bottle of turquoise liquid on the window ledge. “Poison.”

“Well, sir,” said PC Smith, taking out his notebook, “I don't see anything unusual here.”

Maciej thrust the bottle in front of his face. “Read, read,” he said, pointing at the label.

PC Smith pressed the point of his pencil into his chin. “‘Polish remover’, sir?”

English Hacks Abroad

During the last days of Empire, the reptiles of the press had gathered in a central African state hanging around to report on its bloody revolution. When a new dictator ordered all Western hacks out the country by midnight, they packed their luggage and got into their cars, watched by gunmen wielding machetes and Kalashnikovs. As the westerners faced a long drive through the bush, where they were unlikely to find petrol, many of them queued at a garage by the border.

Ten o'clock... eleven o'clock... half past eleven...  One-by-one the hacks’ cars edged off the forecourt and along the road to the border-post a mile away.

John from Yorkshire reached the pumps at ten to twelve. As his newspaper paid all his expenses, he asked for a receipt - naturally. He couldn't understand why his colleagues behind him had a problem with this. After all, the receipt only took the pump attendant five minutes to write.