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  1. The Back Pages
18 February 2014


By New Statesman

Set by Gavin Ross

We asked for updated versions of “1066 and All That”, carrying on after the original ended in 1918.

This week’s winners

Hon menshes to Nicholas Hodgson (“9/11 – or 11/9, in English – was caused by Obama Bin Liner”), Chris O’Carroll (“The next memorable prime minister was Margaret Grocer, a thatcher’s daughter, known as the Irony Lady”), Adrian Fry (“The 21st century first began in December 1999 when the Millennium Bug didn’t happen”) and M E Ault for her test questions (“Outline the causes of the War on Terror in a non-frightening way”). Everyone made a good stab at this one. Each of the four winners get £25 (Allgar, Black and Douse are clearly on a roll), with the Tesco vouchers going, in addition, to Mike Douse.

The death of Charles III

Charles III was very old when he came to the throne. He was a friend of Jonathan P Orridge, the Green Man, and he also had a Monstrous Carbuncle, which made it impossible for him to speak out of one side of his mouth. He invented the Duchy Original, which was a Good Thing, but also very expensive, which was a Bad Thing. He supported Free Schools, which were Very Costly and run by Lord Gove of Hove, or the Brighton Peer. He believed in Homeo sapiens, a species that cured itself by eating a very small extract of its big toe. He succeeded on a Tuesday in 2049, at the ripe age of 101, and failed the next day. His Reign was therefore on the short side. His last words were: “I could just have a Polo” (a reference to the National Mint).

Bill Greenwell

And then …

A man called Martin Luther King was assassinated. This was a Good King but a Bad Thing. Bill Gates became the richest man in the world by inventing Windows. Previously, anyone who wanted to look out of his house had to knock a hole in the wall. Richard Branson also became very rich by selling Virgins, although nobody knows where he found them. Scientists created Genetically Modified Wheat but there still wasn’t enough food, so they started working on Emetically Modified Humans. They will be incapable of holding down food and will need only air and water to survive. Of course, when the air and water run out, everyone will die except people like Bill Gates and Richard Branson, who have holiday homes on Mars. And a lot of gadgets were invented with silly names like iPod, iPad and iPhone. Most people feel they must have one but iDont.

Brian Allgar

After the aberration

King Edward VIII had been a Good Prince but was a Bad King as he could not reign without the Wallace Collection by his side, resulting in an Aberration. Neville Chambermaid, best known for his umbrella, waved a menu saying, “Peas with Hummus in Thyme,” which Adolf Hitler, a brutal vegetarian, declined, preferring the Rump of Czechoslovakia. A World War later, Mr Hitler, brandishing the pistol of Saint Paul, decided to Marry and Burn, thereby sparking off the Cold War and the memorable Berlin Chairlift. Test Questions: When was history changed at a / (draw at least three parallels with the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race)? Which politicians made a complete # of everything (do not include any who are quick or dead)? What became of the Scottish (formerly Irish) Question (do not answer before September)? Which is Top Nation (answers must be written in Mandarin)?

Mike Douse

After the tone of Blair

The interregnum known as the Credit Crunch (in which people ate Money but got Very Sick) led to the Memorable Panacea of 2010. Everybody (well, almost everybody) agreed with Nick and wanted the Young Pretender to succeed but the Bully Boys had other Ideas and thus began the Reign of Error (not to be confused with the Rain Forever, which didn’t happen until 2014, just before the Great Parting). The Bully Boys rebranded in 2012 as Team Bullingdon and lined their pockets by selling Education and Health Care and promising everyone Jam but instead serving up Austerity (which wasn’t very palatable and was why they didn’t have it on their Own Spoons, which were made of Silver). By 2014, the country was clearly awash with Highly Paid Bastards and the northern tribes folk, who wore skirts, said that history had come to a .

Albert Black

The next challenge

No 4314 By J Seery

On visiting an area affected by the floods, David Cameron remarked that the scene was a disaster of biblical proportions. Could we have the handling of an actual biblical disaster by the government, its departments and its agencies, with all of the usual denials, evasions and shifting of blame we have come to expect.

Max 150 words by 7 March

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