"Comedy always works best when it is mean-spirited" - John Cleese

Author John Corby also writes as "Bulldogge" for the British Canadian newspaper.

A Farthingsworth of Tall Tales from Blighty's Fameless Blog
Newsflash from New York (no, not that one!) |  Are the British better drivers? |  The Story of the Telephone Kiosk |  Drinking Nelson's Blood |  Screaming Jelly Babies |  Flying to the UK is very dangerous! |  Brits to drive on the right |  Who hung the monkey? |  Upper class virgins |  Double, double trouble |  What a Lovely Morning for a War

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Old Scottish Lady of Threadneedle Street

In an amazing and curious reversal of logic, history tells us that the Bank of England was founded by a Scotsman and the Bank of Scotland was founded by an Englishman. How and why did that happen?

Our story starts in 1658 when the future Sir William Patterson was born at his parents' farmhouse in Tinwald, Scotland. William pursued his destiny as an entrepeneur to Bristol and then the Bahamas where he hatched a scheme to create a gateway to the Far East through Panama. Moving back to London, he unsuccessfully attempted to persuade the British government to support his scheme. Meanwhile he made his fortune as a merchant and came up with an idea to create a central bank to the government that would have the power to print money. This time his proposal was accepted and the Bank of England received its charter in 1694.

The Bank of Scotland was proposed by John Holland, a retired London merchant in 1696 and established by an act of the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh that same year. The Bank of Scotland was modelled after the Bank of England and was incorporated with the same startup capital of 1.2 million pounds sterling.

Strange, but true.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Security Level Raised in England ;-)

The following was received from an English friend and should be read with tongue firmly in cheek:

The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent terrorist threats and have raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." Londoners have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies all but ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to a "Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was during the great fire of 1666.

Also, the French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide." The only two higher levels in France are "Surrender" and "Collaborate." The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.

It's not only the English and French that are on a heightened level of alert.

Italy has increased the alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing." Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides."

The Germans also increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbor" and "Lose."

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual, and the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.