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By Tom O'Brien



"The British Broadcast Radio News Service now takes you to Cyprus for this important announcement.. Come in Sir Plympton Gnithwold."

There was deepening and fading static, followed by several noise bursts, probably caused by short circuits or loose solenoid transistors and/or leaky vacuum tubes.

"Good evening, this is British Broadcast News .. from Cyprus." Long pause followed by second long pause followed by shuffled papers noises. "British Broadcast News has learned of a dreadful demotion deed. Fourth Lord of The Admiralty, Sir Bammy Parchbald, admitted today that Billy, a goat, was demoted from lance-corporal to fusilier, the same status as an Army Private without privileges while aboard any of Her Majesty's Ships."

"It seems Billy was most unruly while on parade during a ceremony marking Her Majesty's eightieth birthday. Billy is the mascot of the Welsh Guards and is a descendent of The Royal Herd. It was once believed he was a member of the disreputable Gay Gordon Clan."

More papers shuffling and some static.

"Rather than lead the ceremonial parade, he insisted on head butting the drummers and trombone musicians in their waistbands and nether regions. During the playing of God Save The Queen he broke away from his handler, PFC Priscilla Vicky Jenny-Penny Mirthsome, and ran to a nearby flag pole where he relieved himself. What was most dreadful was his lifting of his hind leg and doing it . 'doggy fashion.'"

"Many lads from the Home Office then chased Billy into a circle of Foreign Vice Regals who laughed and joked while exploring Billy's anatomicals. After escaping the ham handed grasp of a Russian Princess, he hopped over a barricade and trotted smartly to a rose bush and again disgraced himself."

"At that precise moment, a person, or persons, probably American, started shouting "Bar-B-Q" "Bar-B-Q" "Bar-B-Q" and soon the whole affair was turned into a Royal Row. The Irish Step Dancers and some French Legionnaires held an impromptu waltz while some low life Australians sang their one and only piece of music, Waltzing Mathilda. Calm was restored when Billy trotted up to his evening keeper and received his ration of two cigarettes .Marlboroughs, . without filters. Not one person in the War Office can give a satisfactory explanation as to why Billy prefers the smelly American brand as opposed to British Consols."

"A Military Attaché, speaking on condition of anonymity in a church graveyard, said that Billy will live at Worcestershire Olmrod, which is home for all military mascots while their platoons are at war. The present guest list includes a ferret, a python, and an elephant with a unexplained pregnancy."



© Tom O'Brien

NOTE: Demoted was awarded Honorable Mention in the prestigious June/July competition



* * * * *


Tom O'Brien is a retired teacher/limousine driver who now raises meat goats. What better qualifications are there to be a humour writer?

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