Murder Most Foul

First let me apologise for the lack of a post last Friday. I was meant to bring you a review of SPQR, by Mary Beard, but technical problems meant the post wasn’t published and I was away from home and couldn’t fix it. I promise I’ll publish the review this Friday instead.

This blog is mostly about stories and last weekend I was involved in a story of a different kind. To entertain a few friends on a weekend away Liz, my wife, created a fiendish murder mystery. It took weeks to prepare, including making lots of documents for clues and a lifesize corpse, Lord William Marchmain. Plied with alcohol we played out the mystery over two eveinings. I won’t tell you whodunnit, because I’ll be posting a photoessay about it in a few weeks, but here’s a photograph of the happy corpse, about to enjoy a post-mortem meal.

Lord William Marchmain

Lord William Marchmain waiting for his post-mortem dinner. Note the letter opener in the neck, and no, the butler didn’t do it.

Now the excitement of the murder mystery is over, I’m going to spend a few days drawing up the first stab at a family tree. So far I’ve gone back five generations, but it’s all in ‘back of a fag packet’ style, so I need to get it documented properly. I’m looking forward to the challenge, and there are plenty of stories to tell about the thirty two ancestors on the tree.

Speaking of stories, I went back to an old favourite of mine over the weekend. When I was a kid I loved to read the short stories of the American humourist,  James Thurber. Some of my favourite stories of his, which are vaguely autobiographical, are contained in the collection, My Life and Hard Times. I found an old an battered copy of this book at the house we where we stayed for the weekend, and managed to read all 150 pages in and between trying to solve the murder mystery. The stories are classics of American humorous writing, and I’ll be reviewing them later this month.

I hope you enjoy the belated review of SPQR on Friday. Until then, have a good week.

Regards

Dave

 

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