October’s ramblings

Ladies and Gents (seeing as this will hopefully be viewed by both…)
Having come up with the bold idea of actually talking to you lot on a regular basis – letting you know what is going on – I have of course failed. But only slightly.
Since the last billet-doux we have had:
At least three events run by ‘Sharkey’ Haines and his Stratford Knights involving beer and wine, food and a generous smattering of (possibly disreputable) members hailing from the southern marches. I know a few of you are a little uneasy about the “alternative” 41 Club, but having now taken advantage of his hospitality, I can only encourage you all to make the trip now and then – we used to think nothing of nipping off to Wales or Essex for an evening with fellow Tablers, so don’t let the flame go out for the sake of a 30 minute car journey a few times a year!
A bugger of a lot of golf! I still have not succumbed to charms of the game myself and I failed on all bar one to rise to the occasion, but Ian Brown / Table, Andy Ventress and Tony Mucklow have helped organise some much needed exercise for the sportier members of 41 Club. V-C Ken took some not inappropriate pictures of the annual 41 Club Golf Challenge – the results of which can be seen here.. http://www.moseley41club.co.uk/?page_id=690 – but for me the highlight was the excellent meal at a very reasonable price in the charming surroundings of Henley Golf Club. I could almost have been encouraged to take it up. Only almost. And it was good to see some of the rarer species of 41 Club member.

My younger daughter accepted the challenge of attempting to entertain us at the last speaker evening, and whilst the subject was (for 41 Club anyway) controversially religious, it seemed to go down well. It was a shame Mr Thomas could not have been there to confirm the authenticity of Lucy’s Welsh accent in her re-telling of nativity from the viewpoint of a shepherd’s wife. Lucy though is still not convinced about name ‘41 Club’, when the youngest person there was Table chairman James who a few years ago would actually have been one of our members.

I have attended a few ‘fringe’ meetings (but nowhere near as many as Table President Ian) including the Area Cricket. Still not sure if we won (I think we did) but at least we put up a good fight. It was a bit strange though being at a Table area event where the majority of attendees were 41 Clubbers! Perhaps it is because we know how to play dirty and win? But the business meetings, you will be pleased to know, as just as unruly as they always were!

Table also ran an event to brew a keg of beer which they then gave away a few weeks later in Kings Heath as part of a local initiative (fortunate it was not the centre of Moseley from 20 years ago!). I was very impressed with the quality of the subsequent beer, but, more importantly, the quality of the craic and the way total newcomers were invited in and made welcome was inspiring! Table is certainly on the up!

The last event I attended was the Table / 41 Club Bowls match. I have no idea how they did it but I am sure Table cheated. I mean to say, we’re the old farts, we’re supposed to be good at slow old farts games. But no, we were thrashed! When you see the stylish way we laid down those woods, it is hard to understand why.. http://www.moseley41club.co.uk/?page_id=693

V-C Ken organised the last 41 Club meeting (whilst I forced myself to relax with a book by the side of an empty Turkish swimming pool in 30 degree heat). I understand the aim of the game was ‘Grumpy Old Men’ (not that we know any) but I am sure you had a try at being one, just for the evening! The spirit of “Grumpy Old Men” was well received. Even to the menu which reflected the occasion – Peter never misses an opportunity. The team of grumpy old men led by David Elliot had the most disagreeable list out of the four teams and they went away with Purity beer as a prize.

The next meeting 15th October sees us returning to the Cricket Club for a gastronomic feast. The 41 Club Gourmand Evening – with a theme of ‘tradition’ (and although you all know this is the opening song from Fiddler on the Roof, unless Mr Wood chooses to grace us with his presence, who else would be up to the part of Tevye?)

The menu:
Rillettes of Pork
Traditional French, slowly cooked pork and pork fat turned into coarse textured terrine of pork. Served with ready baked French baguette
Steak, Kidney & Mushroom Pudding
A traditional autumn dinner as your Mum might have made. Served with Creamy Mash, broccoli, kale, buttered carrots
Treacle Tart
To finish this rib sticking menu, home-made with vanilla ice cream

‘Fifth Wednesdays’ have, so far this year, been an abject disaster, so I will endeavour to correct that this month – details to follow.

The speaker evening next month involves young people, animals and getting out in the open air. Ponder that!

Finally, our thoughts go out to Fred – who felt his 65th birthday celebrations last week lacked some punch – which brought on an attack of ASHD (Attention Seeking hyperactivity disorder). A brief rest surrounded by ladies in uniform (and there’s far too many of us that now about them), a flash of scalpel and the insertion of some stents and he’s back in action. But he did miss his trip to Vegas! Get well soon Fred?

To continued friendship

Nick