Monday, 27 August 2012
Should Queens ever be Captains?
'The thing is,' said Captain Bill, 'it's a very tricky job and quite different from Queening. I mean there's hardly any waving involved...and there's maps, lots of maps and charts and bits of paper and you wouldn't believe the decisions you have to make, it's constant, you'd be bored by it, it's tiresome and...'
'But One wants to be Captain,' interrupted Queen Phoebe, 'One's even 'ad an 'at run up especially like.'
'If it were only as easy as putting a hat on,' replied Captain Bill, 'and there's years of study, exams, further exams, resitting exams...more resitting, pleading with the examiners...and don't forget the bare minimum requirement is that you need to be able to tell your port from your starboliarboliboard.'
'But I've got you to do that for me,' replied Queen Phoebe.
'HA!' called out Bertha from the cows nest.
'See!' mooed Captain Bill, 'see the sort of thing that you have to put up with and she's one of the more competent members of staff. Have you ever tried to get a poet to steer a ship? It's a force 10, you're heading straight towards a reef and he's still trying to find something to rhyme with 'dismemberment'!' And quite frankly if you can get Cyril or Annie out of the kitchen you're doing better than me!
'But One doesn't get those sorts of problems,' replied Queen Phoebe, 'when One has a natural authority in One's voice and a big dungeon people just do as you ask of them.'
'And there's deciding what direction to go in,' added Captain Bill, 'just which 'Not North' would you suggest we head towards? And if it needs to be pointed out I think you'll find that I've got the only knitted compass on the ship!'
'You could give One a lend of it!' replied Queen Phoebe, 'or I could get one of the girls to run me one up, I'm sure they would if I asked.'
'But you can only wear one when you're a Captain,' said Captain Bill, 'it's a law or something. You can't just put one on because you feel like it!'
'But I can!' replied Queen Phoebe, 'I can do what I like! After all that's what being a Queen is all about.'