Lawlessly Yours column

Bill Lawless.
Bill Lawless.
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Well. It’s been and gone and the abject failure of one Guido Fawkes to bring about a premature general election by blowing up Parliament in 1605 has been been celebrated by the detonation of millions of quids worth of fireworks.

I have always felt that the wrong man was hung, slung and slaughtered.

This fate should have befallen the spoilport who frustrated the plot. Show me a man who has never wished to blow up the place and I will show you a rascal, as Dr Johnson would certainly have said if he had thought of it before me.

Anyway, I do wonder that in these days of multi-megaton explosions the bangers are about as noisily impressive as a flatulent flea.

They are more like damp squibs than the blockbusters we used to have back in the mists of time when I was a kid.

In my young day the Mighty Atom penny banger was reputedly tested in conjunction with the Atomic Bomb at Los Alamos.

One of these was guaranteed to disorientate veterans of the blitz and send them hurtling them to the back garden which once housed an Anderson shelter.

And as for rip-raps! We let one off behind Softy Sedgewick who had never been the same since one July day in Normandy in 1944 and he hit the deck as if the Wermacht were still after him with machine guns.

Roman candles were best launched in mid-afternoon and come nightfall they burnt up beautifully when re-entering the earth’s atmosphere.

There was one little triangular job called Vesuvius and it producd more molten lava than did its namesake when it pumiced-of Pompeii.

A few of these detonated simultaneously and it was like the recreation ground had been napalmed. We had the bangs but not the bonfires.

The luftwaffe kindly provided these with incendiary bombs, and the old story about hating the Germans because they bombed our chippie was very likely true.

I once stuck my head outside and saw, unforgettably, a bomber in flames over Manchester. In those violent days I got a thick ear for leaving the shelter, but it was well worth it.

The old story about hating the Germans because they bombed the local chippie was very likely true...