Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Albert Ramsbottom's Recumbent Posture

Enough of Sam Small for a while and over to little Albert Ramsbottom, who today is unwell and has been advised to embark on a recumbent posture! Trouble is no-one seems to know what a recumbent posture is!! . . . . and mother hates Latin. I am please to say I have found a utube of Stanley Holloway reciting this monologue which I think is one of his greatest.

by Marriott Edgar (1939)

The day after Christmas, young Albert
Were what's called confined to 'is bed,
With a tight kind of pain in 'is 'stommick'
And a light feeling up in 'is 'ead.

His parents was all of a fluster
When they saw little lad was so sick;
They said, "Put out your tongue" - When they'd seen it,
They said, "Put it back again - quick !"

His Ma made a basin of gruel,
But that were a move for the worse;
Though the little lad tried 'ard to eat it,
At finish 'e did the reverse.

The pain showed no signs of abating,
So at last they got Doctor to call;
'E said it were in 'is 'ab-domain'
and not in 'is 'stommick' at all.

'E sent up a bottle of 'physick',
Wi' instructions on t'label to say,
'To be took in a recumbent posture,
One teaspoonful three times a day'.

As Ma stood there reading the label,
Pa started to fidget about;
'E said, "Get a teaspoon and dose 'im
Before 'e gets better without."

“I can manage the teaspoon", says Mother,
A look of distress on 'er face;
"It's this 'ere 'recumbulent' posture -
I haven't got one in the place."

Said Pa, "What about Missus Luckton ?
Next door 'ere - you'd better ask 'er;
A woman who's buried three 'usbands
Is sure to 'ave one of them there."

So they went round and asked Missus Luckton;
"Aye, I know what you mean," she replied,
"I 'ad got one on order for 'Orace,
But poor dear got impatient and died."

She said, "You'd best try the Co-op Shop,
They'll 'ave one in stock, I dare say;
'Fact I think I saw one in the 'winder'
Last time I were passing that way."

So round they went to the Co-op Shop,
And at the counter for household supplies;
Pa asked for a recumbent posture,
And the Shopman said, "Yes sir - what size ?"

Said Ma, "It's for our little Albert,
I don't know what size 'e would use;
I know 'e takes thirteens in collars,
And sixes, four fittings in shoes."

"If it's little lad's size that you're wanting,"
Said the Shopman, "I'm sorry to say
That we nobbut had one in the building,
And that one was sold yesterday."

'E sent them along to a Tin-Smith,
Who said, "Aye, I know what you've in mind;
If you'll draw me a plan I could make one."
But Pa 'ad left his pencil behind.

They searched every place in the district;
They walked for two hours by the clock,
But though most places reckoned to keep 'em,
They'd none of them got one in stock.

The last place they tried was a Chemist's,
Chap looked at 'em both with a frown,
And explained that a Recumbent Posture
Were Latin, and meant 'lying down'.

"lt means 'lying down' - put in Latin,"
Said Father, "That's just what I 'thowt.'
Then 'e picked up a side-glance from Mother
And pretended 'e 'adn't said nowt.

"They're not dosing my lad with Latin."
Said Mother, her face looking grim;
"Just plain Castor Oil's all 'e's getting,
And I'm leaving the posture to him."

The wording is slightly different in places


  1. Hilarious, once again!!! And as I've have stommick pain as of late, I'll have to try taking my physick in a recumbent posture...LOL...And loved hearing Holloway's rendition!!! His voices are terrific!!! Thanks again, Eddie...another slam dunk, as we say! ~Janine

  2. Oops, should read I've had stommick pain...but I think you get the idea...LOL.~J

  3. Cute!!! (I thought this might end up like a poem in "Where the Sidewalk Ends"...but it didn't... Loved it.
    Thank you for visiting my site...and for the comments you made. I hope that you will come back again.


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