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King_Ghidra
16-06-2009, 12:48:17
Some of you may have heard this phrase before, it is a euphemism used in the British press for people who are drunk. It was coined in 1937 after Naval officer Lieutenant Commander Thomas Woodrooffe did a tremendously drunk live broadcast on BBC radio commentating on the illumination of Her Majesty's naval fleet. Anyway it's rather funny.

There's more info and a link to an mp3 on this page: http://uffish.net/archives/000327.html

but here's the transcript:

ANNOUNCER:

This is the Regional Programme. The Illumination of the Fleet. Once again we're taking you on board HMS Nelson for a description of the scene at Spithead tonight by Lieutenant-Commander Thomas Woodrooffe.

WOODROOFFE:

At the present moment, the whole fleet is lit up. When I say 'lit up', I mean lit up by fairy lamps.

We've forgotten the whole Royal Review ... we've forgotten the Royal Review ... the whole thing is lit up by fairy lamps. It's fantastic, it isn't the fleet at all. It's just ... it's fairyland, the whole fleet is in fairyland.

Now, if you'll follow me through ... if you don't mind ... the next few moments... you'll find the fleet doing odd things (indistinct, but that's my best guess). At the present moment, the New York, obviously, is lit out ... and when I say the fleet is lit up ... in lamps... I mean, she's outlined. The whole ship's outlined. In little lamps.

I'm sorry, I was telling some people to shut up talking.

Umm.. what I mean is this. The whole fleet is lit up. In fairy lamps, and ... each ship is outlined.

Now, as far as I can see is about ... I suppose I can see down about five or six miles ... ships are all lit up.

They're outlined, the whole lot. Even destroyers are outlined. In the old days, y'know, destroyers used to be outlined by a little kind of pyramid of lights. And nowadays ... destroyers are lit up by ... they outline themselves.

In a second or two, we're going to fire rockets, um, we're going to fire all sorts of things (indistinct). And.. you can't possibly see them, but you'll hear them going off, and you may hear my reaction when I see them go off. Because ... erm ... I'm going to try and tell you what they look like as they go off. But at the moment there's a whole huge fleet here. The thing we saw this afternoon, this colossal fleet, lit up ... by lights ... and the whole fleet is in fairyland! It isn't true, it isn't here!

And as I say it ...

It's gone! It's gone! There's no fleet! It's, eh, it's disappeared! No magician who ever could have waved his wand could have waved it with more acumen than he has now at the present moment. The fleet's gone. It's disappeared.

I'm trying to give you, ladies and gentlemen, (indistinct) the fleet's gone. It's disappeared. I was talking to you ... in the middle of this damn (cough), in the middle of this fleet ... and what's happened is the fleet's gone, disappeared and gone. We had a hundred, two hundred warships around us a second ago, and now they've gone, at a signal by the Morse code, at a signal by the fleet flagship which I'm in now, they've gone, they've disappeared.

There's nothing between us and heaven. There's nothing at all.

(recording ends)

Funko
16-06-2009, 12:55:49
Brilliant.

Dyl Ulenspiegel
16-06-2009, 12:58:35
That sounds like a bit more than "drunk".

Funko
16-06-2009, 13:32:56
The best bit is that this was the start of his radio career. :D

techietone
16-06-2009, 16:09:46
ROFL well he was very descriptive lol

Japher
16-06-2009, 16:16:31
My Sister-in-law in a brit and I still get a kick out of her calling those lights "fairy lamps" or "fairy lights"... we call the Christmas (tree) lights.

Anyway, funny stuff there. I wonder who was lit.

Provost Harrison
16-06-2009, 17:19:48
My Sister-in-law in a brit and I still get a kick out of her calling those lights "fairy lamps" or "fairy lights"... we call the Christmas (tree) lights.

Anyway, funny stuff there. I wonder who was lit.

Depends on the part of the country. In the North they call them "Fucking pufter lights".

Dyl Ulenspiegel
16-06-2009, 18:09:05
The best bit is that this was the start of his radio career. :D

Commenting f1 races?

paiktis
16-06-2009, 20:35:06
that reminds me of the first new years eve i spent in the navy. i was stationed in one of the major military naval bases and since i was a newbie of course i got to spent new years eve inside the base, along with other newbies.
we had made a plan and we went outside the base (hidden below the tent of a jeep) and bought some strong alcohol and dry grapes (?) etc to have a feast during new years.
All of that was illegal of course. getting out of the base, buying the liquer, bringing it in etc
Anyway I had called all the newbies in my department because it had a nice view of the fleet through a very large window.
untill they arrived i had managed to drink half a bottle of whiskey by myself.
when the new year started it was phantasmagorical indeed. there were lights throughout the ships, there was a lot of noise though their horns and in general it was a great great spectacle.
being drunk and watching it was really something else. i can sympathise :D
(eh it got ugly afterwards because they called us for inspection.... luckily i was able to come through as sober, staying away and not talking much. or maybe i didn't but they cut me some slack anyway -propably the second)

mr_B
17-06-2009, 18:33:45
paiktis my hero

:lol:

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-06-2009, 18:49:02
wag wag!

mr_B
17-06-2009, 18:52:36
what a genius what a genius?

paiktis
17-06-2009, 19:55:51
good times

paiktis
17-06-2009, 19:59:33
that's beasically what i mostly remember of the military service. things like that. there are also other hilarious stories but i think they violate military secrecy so better not.
but yeah good times :D

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-06-2009, 20:00:54
what a genius what a genius?

Yes, though I thought of "what a greek".

paiktis
17-06-2009, 20:03:08
Dyl tell us some stories about the austrian navy :D

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-06-2009, 20:23:53
We kicked the Italians (until 1918)

Provost Harrison
18-06-2009, 12:36:19
that reminds me of the first new years eve i spent in the navy. i was stationed in one of the major military naval bases and since i was a newbie of course i got to spent new years eve inside the base, along with other newbies.
we had made a plan and we went outside the base (hidden below the tent of a jeep) and bought some strong alcohol and dry grapes (?) etc to have a feast during new years.
All of that was illegal of course. getting out of the base, buying the liquer, bringing it in etc
Anyway I had called all the newbies in my department because it had a nice view of the fleet through a very large window.
untill they arrived i had managed to drink half a bottle of whiskey by myself.
when the new year started it was phantasmagorical indeed. there were lights throughout the ships, there was a lot of noise though their horns and in general it was a great great spectacle.
being drunk and watching it was really something else. i can sympathise :D
(eh it got ugly afterwards because they called us for inspection.... luckily i was able to come through as sober, staying away and not talking much. or maybe i didn't but they cut me some slack anyway -propably the second)

Amazing, a Greek Naval tale that doesn't end in buggery...

MDA
18-06-2009, 13:16:39
I had friend that did some joint work with the Greek Navy while he was in the US Navy. His description of the general state of the Greek Navy was much the same as paiktis'. :wine:

paiktis
18-06-2009, 23:45:23
err, nevermind :D