I have had a couple of expressions of concern over the latest post.

Sources close to Dame Jenni™ Murray contacted me yesterday evening. It was rather late and they weren’t entirely coherent but I can probably summarise their concerns as follows:

One: The latest post is entitled Thumping Unnecessary, and the entirety of the last paragraph reads:

Dame Jenni™ Murray?

Two: Thumping is used in the blog as a reference to masturbation. See Bunanza!

Three: This is a deliberate and derisive reference to Dame Jenni™ Murray and her recent assertion to John Humphrys:

I’ve never needed to.

Four: Dame Jenni™ Murray has never needed to.

I jotted down sources close as remarking that this was because she gets it regular. Such vulgarity: I must have been mistaken.

Five: A woman’s control over her own body is not negotiable and is a beautiful thing,

Six: We wouldn’t be having this debate if it was a man.

Needless to say, I am distressed. I would not upset Dame Jenni™ Murray for the world. I entirely accept propositions four and five, which seem to be the crux of the matter – but not the others.

Only someone eaten away by paranoia would make the connection between the title and the final paragraph. Much water flows under the bridge in between. I’m not accusing Dame Jenni™ Murray of paranoia – of course not – but the sources close, and I can’t believe that they are authorised by her, certainly are.

It is true that I have given the soubriquet ‘Thumper’ to the better half’s devotee who telephones her in the mornings.

Curiously, what you hear through the phone, at any rate from across the bed, is less thumping than grunts, little whinnies and the snap, finally, of Lycra replaced. One infers the thumping.

Thumping in the context of The Culture, however, has no overtones of self-love. It is a serious part of the technology of creating dairy products and is dealt with in some detail in my post Vladimir Putin and the Intestinal Flora of Sheep. The word thump, like so many, has more than one meaning.

I have to say that I deplore the efforts of some people to see double entendres everywhere and to drag everything down to the level of filth.

Finally, whilst the better half’s admirer is male and would undoubtedly if close-miked (or ‘close-miced’: I must ask Kurd Maverick) make thumping noises, women are different in that regard. I concede freely – if that helps – that if Dame Jenni™ Murray were to masturbate – which of course she doesn’t, as she doesn’t need to – she would not make thumping noises.

I trust that that concludes the matter.

The second bothers me more. It is that the latest post was excessively allusive. The word ‘gratuitous’ features, particularly as regards plays on words in relation to dairy products. Some took particular exception to my ‘dragging in for the sake of a cheap joke’ that fine song by Paul Simon You Can Call Me Al.

I would say two things:

One: My saying ‘You can call me Al’ was a cheap joke. People sometimes shorten ‘Alablague’ and call me ‘Al’ but my friends generally use my Christian name. The Jibjab Women provoked me into it, however, by saying as she did ‘You can call me Jib’, and my glib answer did raise a titter from Amy.

Two: But should I have recorded the incident for you? Here I must come clean.

I suggested in the post that Amy gave me steroids. This was not true. It was the usual herbal rubbish. It was the dentist who gave me steroids. Now, steroids have the effect of making you run and cycle jolly fast, but they also make you a bit perky. This effect is less remarked as it takes a lot to make an athlete exhibit characteristics that a normal person would describe as ‘perky’. Usain Bolt’s mime is quite perky, but that militates against my argument, as Usain Bolt would never take steroids.

Anyway I went home and tried to sleep because of the pain from my tooth, but I couldn’t, because of the steroids. So I wrote the post instead. And if I failed to maintain the standard of cool and factual impartiality to which I aim and which you expect, I am sorry.

I will never again irritate you with steroid-induced maunderings again. That is my pledge.

Kefir of course is different.

Hold on. Here comes another one.

It’s signed ‘Pro Life’. It criticises me for ‘equivalentising’ my ‘decrepit old tooth’ with an ‘Innocent Young Life’ [upper case Pro Life’s]. It goes on to hope that I develop ‘septiseemia’ [It really isn’t difficult to check spelling, even with Microsoft Word] and die in horrible pain.

For heaven’s sake!

If you don’t like it, Pro sodding Life – and who’s life by the way, obviously not mine – sod off and read something else.

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