Tuesday, 11 August 2009


My Mum always said that things run in threes. And so it is with trousers.

Saturday saw me in Bristol with the 'favourite, wonderful' daughter (she's also the 'very worst, shockingly awful' daughter and the 'pretty good' daughter as she is the only daughter I have - well, in fact, only step daughter I have) and her fiancé, trying on trousers for their wedding. I might add that she won't be wearing trousers; no, she will be the one in the long beautiful dress.

This trial fitting needed to be attended to as I was a mad four inches out in my waist measurement. As Lord Elpus has once mentioned, I think there are a lot of these Chinese tape-measures out there these days. That was my first Trouser experience. The trousers will be in a fetching bright grey. Happiness.

My second trouserly tousle was this afternoon; this time trying on a dark grey stripy pair, interestingly two inches nearer my correct tummy measurement but intriguingly one inch shorter in the leg department, but seemingly a perfect length. It's an age thing. I am the incredible shrinking man. These trousers are intended for my eldest, most wonderful son's wedding (you have guessed it already; he is also the eldest incorrigible rogue of a son, and the pretty okay bloke eldest son). Unsurprisingly he won't be wearing a long beautiful dress and neither will his younger brother, the best man: We will all be wearing the same trousers. Well not exactly the same trousers, but you get the idea.

This takes us inevitably, yes you have guessed, it to the third trouser tribulation.

I received a call on my telephone that, after my customary greeting, consisted of swishing and gurgling noises from the caller. I talked to the mystery caller's trouser pocket for a little while. It should be said that this type of conversation will not be uncommon to anyone who has a name starting with 'A' as mobile telephones in trouser pockets have a habit of dialling the first name on the caller's list. I went through my normal procedure of first of all talking reasonably and then raising my voice and then whistling loudly into my phone.

The cat just laughed.

Eventually I talked to an apologetic chap out walking with his terriers, taking time out from the tyranny of his office. He was delighted the trouser pixies had decided to call me. This gentleman is the Coffee Connoisseur, the Beau Brummel, the Literary Leviathan of the TGO Challenge.

With all his literary low-down, he offered me a cookbook to partner my new wok purchase. The China Town Chinese supermarket basement room had come up trumps yesterday and supplied me with a wonderful wok for the princely sum of £6.33 Tonight's meal was a culinary masterpiece, even if I say so myself.

If this goes on, I might soon need to be fitted for larger trousers.


  1. In our house, there is always someone talking pants.

    Maybe that's a whole other story.

  2. Louise!

    I have often wondered about a sub-title for this blog.

    "Talking Pants" might just be the one!

  3. Wouldn't have believed a tale about trousers could have been so funny..great stuff Alan! LMAO!!!

    ...and well done on getting something out of the wok - I assume it was edible? J just bought me Rick Steins latest far eastern cookery book for my birthday so I'm looking forward to whipping out my own wok...if you'll pardon the expression.

  4. I don't know...
    With Fatdog losing so much weight recently and then 'laughing his arse off' he will constantly be going back to his tailors.

    My kitchen cupboards are now slowly being stocked with all manner of wonderful far-eastern produce. Chinese Supermarkest are now a new fascination destination.

  5. Humph, these TGOers get everywhere, don't they? Though it was a big shock to discover a Grumpy one in our local shopping centre recently.
    'Talking Pants' is perhaps an appropriate sub-title for many blogs, Alan.
    But not yours.

  6. Don't worry about gaining weight, I've never seen a fat Chinese person. Their diet is like a permanent régime.

    Apropos not trousers, but woks reminded me of the time my dear dad came to stay with us and volunteered to do the washing-up. He seemed to be taking longer than normal and we discovered the reason as he emerged from the kitchen proudly clutching a particularly (now) shiny, very shiny, parabolic mirror-finish wok which had just minutes previously possessed a time consumingly laid down thick black coating, 'It took a couple of Brillo Pads, but I managed to get it clean', he exclaimed, triumphantly.

  7. Des: Priceless, absolutely priceless.
    Could you send him round as I have loads of baking tins and saucepans that require your Dad's attention.

    And this morning an excellent cookbook arrived from Amazon c/o Humph -- another man so shiny his wife must have spent years rubbing him down with Brillo pads ~ I bet he enjoyed it tooi...

  8. Don't know about Humph's reflective qualities but he may have The Shining because he's heard of and knows Tinahely, in County Wicklow, the place that my wife's family comes from. Notalotofpeopleknowthat!

  9. Ooh, I *love* Chinese supermarkets! It's one of the great blights of my life that we don't have one here.


Because of spammers, I moderate all comments, so don't worry if your comment seems to have disappeared; It has been sent to me for approval. As soon as I see it, I'll deal with it straight away.
Thank you!