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This is a question Rogues, Villains and Eccentrics

My current toilet book is Brewer's classic encyclopedia of the same name, listing some of the great British nutters down the ages. Let's create a B3TA version based on the dodgy people you've met

(, Thu 27 Sep 2012, 13:43)
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My grandfather
Villan? No. Rogue? Depends on who you ask. Eccentric? Probably.

Married to my grandmother, he begat my mother (yes, begat) 10 years before deciding to add more to the clan. Three more. Being the Swinging Sixties, he then decided it would be proper to have another family, begetting another three offspring by another lady. Which means that I have uncles and an aunt my age (or younger). Then let's add another (allegedly) by the au-pair. Off we go.

I got to know about this all around my grandmother died. After this (married to his second wife), he would then make various visits, normally by boat as he had lost his driving licence due to inebriation, and had worked out that most of his family lived near the river. The phone would ring, and a gruff but friendly voice would say "Friend" (all grandchildren were addressed as friend, either as a friendly term or because he had lost count) "I am here, will you come aboard?" A trip down to the river would then be organised, probably involving wine, more wine, and possibly something French cooked on the boat's single gas ring.

Trips to the boat resulted in cracked ribs (pissed, failing to negotiate turn on bike on way back), river police charging up on a RIB (after an occupant of the boat had mooned at the riverside crowd laughing at attempts to get the boat going after running aground after a trip for beer) or a fine for being over the limit in charge of the boat (the fine was 70p; he asked for time to pay, and was granted it).

I have two lasting memories of him, one of helming a sailing boat he had somehow got his hands on over to the Isle of Wight and being passed endless glasses of wine and lit fags, the other of a little voice which asked "Friend, will you help me?" only to see my seventy-year-old grandfather in his kecks, up to his waist in the Thames, trying to shove the boat off another low-lying pile of gravel, broken pint glasses and shopping trolleys. What do you do? Jump in- there was always a glass of wine to reward you afterwards.

At his funeral wake, not a dry affair, I was invited upstairs by my uncles and aunts for a smoke. The joint was smooth and strong. In my innocence, I asked where it had come from. "Oh, this is the last of your grandfather's stuff" was the answer.

A, you were a legend. The best grandfather out.
(, Thu 27 Sep 2012, 22:24, 4 replies)
Top stuff, moments like that actually remind us we are humans

(, Thu 27 Sep 2012, 22:29, closed)

Awesome granddad **Click**
(, Thu 27 Sep 2012, 23:27, closed)
"[T]he fine was 70p; he asked for time to pay, and was granted it."
That's sufficient for a click in its own right.
(, Fri 28 Sep 2012, 9:39, closed)
Very much this.
(, Fri 28 Sep 2012, 10:16, closed)

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