Yes, I am an avid watcher of these two Pommy quiz shows - but my main criticism goes to the way the red hairdo witch on the weakest link comes over as a presenter. Her rude inferences to the contestants do not make her my favourite person. The ingrained British way the contestants grovel to any personage of higher position or presumed importance irritates me. It seems the only questions that I provide an answer to are those whom I can guess her suggested prefixed letter such as P D E C, or N M and F and S just to name a few phonetic possibilities. However I would be totally useless on the show due to my complete misunderstanding of bang clang music from which the majority of questions are hatched. And, someone in charge should tell the Question Master that Haiti is not an Island but Dominica is.
How mighty are the fallen. Recently shown in Strayer was the EGGHEADS falling on their sword four times on the trot. There was one occasion where it could have been avoided should they have known the answer to "Who was president Nkruma"?.
It was the sort of question I Vest would have liked when facing up to the million dollar quessy on millionaire. Here goes.
Kwame Nkruma became the Prime Minister of Ghana on March 6 1957 when the Brit West African colonies of the Gold Coast and Togoland were united as one, pres Nkruma as he later became went to his maker in 1978.
Soon after taking on fuel at Gibraltar, the ship sailed to Takoradi on the Gold Coast of West Africa, where we unloaded stores and provisions for the ceremonies that were to take place further down the coast in Accra, the capital. Almost the entire population of Accra was Negro. They were friendly but misguided by their leaders. “Freedom, Freedom” was their familiar chant. On 6 March 1957 the Gold Coast, Ashanti, and Togoland became ‘Ghana.’
There was much celebration and dancing amongst us and the locals, this generated a fair ‘Whiff’ from the gyrating bodies as they shouted “Freedom! Freedom!” and I then shouting “Rexona! Rexona!”
I stayed at the United Africa Co. Guest House. I remember “Reg “H, a well-known red-haired professional cyclist from Nottingham England, who was in Accra flogging Raleigh bicycles to the locals; he had fallen down the stairs. He was not at all well from our binge the night before. Fortunately, he managed to find someone who looked like him to take his place. I recall this visit later in an interview in 1964.
During our stay in Portland, England, I was wearing civilian clothes and walking along the jetty on my way home for weekend leave. HMS Wiltshire (or was it Lancashire?), one of the latest 5,000-ton destroyers, had just secured alongside when a voice called down to me from the bridge area. “Come aboard! I want to see you.” I replied that I would, and then went up the after gangway of the ship. When the quartermaster approached me, I told him I was the guest of the commander. The quartermaster replied, “He is our CO ‘captain.’” After I showed him my security pass from HMS Maryland, he told me to carry on.
I eventually found the mysterious commander who I then remembered as my divisional officer on HMS Lanyard in 1957. In a short space of time, the Commander had revealed to his navigator most of my escapades on HMS Lanyard seven years earlier.
The main one he remembered was the saga of John Leonard Spencer AKA Vest etc, in Accra, Ghana on 7 March 1957. I had supposedly telephoned the ship at 6:30 am saying I had lost all my clothes and was in a police station naked, and would probably get back to the ship later in the day.
This story was bandied around the ship in many forms. I became the subject of ridicule. The truth was that I had telephoned the ship at six am in the morning to tell them I was staying at the United Africa Co. Guest House. I said that someone had loaned me a shirt and a pair of shorts because a well-meaning houseboy had washed my uniform, and that I would return to the ship as soon as I could get properly dressed.
The ship-to-shore telephone line with its distorted sound certainly added to the misinformation. Twenty-four hours later when I arrived back on board looking clean and tidy, I was told to forget what had happened. Commander ‘Queeg’ had not been interested in my most recent debacle (or in me, for that matter.) Despite this, many jokes about this incident circulated for quite a while.
The captain of the Wiltshire (or Lancashire) also reminded me of my departure day from HMS Lanyard. I was surprised he remembered the nickname ‘Queeg.’
“What did you say to Commander ‘Queeg’ when he gave you that large smelly wooden spoon and then threw his hat on the deck and pretended to jump on it?” he asked.
“All I said was… ‘It was great serving with you, sir,’ and he replied, ‘Commiserations to your next captain.’ We saluted and I left, but someone on the truck taking us and our gear to the barracks in Portsmouth said, ‘It’s the first time I’ve seen Queeg smile.’”
After saying goodbye to the captain of the HMS Lancashire (or Wiltshire… I also cannot remember his name for the life of me), I left the ship and caught a later train home.
The weather is cooler and more pleasant, the telly is off and nearest and dearest has gone to the theatre, a deadly silence prevails.
Oh BTW would that bloke who is sending me death threats; knock it off please and get yourself a job.
Well that's all folks, dont forget to smile at someone today.
As promised from comments:
Dominica is an independant Republic island nation in the Windward Islands.
The Republic of Haiti controls approx one fifth in the west region of the Island of Hispaniola the remaining area in the east is controlled by the Dominican Republic.
Note the 'N' difference, Dominica and Dominican.
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
To advise that Vest (Les Bowyer) passed away this morning. Regards, Chris (Son).
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