Sunday, March 05, 2006

James Blunt's Dad

I have been following Listmaker's burgeoning obsession with James Blunt with interest. I personally don't mind the bug-eyed British singer who sounds like he has a strangulated hernia but any excuse to further work the Blunt bug into Listo's ear can never be passed up, so it was with a degree of glee that I forwarded a story from the BBC about Blunt conquering the US charts to my American Brooklyn chum on Friday.

While reading the story I noticed that the BBC had a link to an interview with Blunt by one of its regional branches. And not just any regional branch, but BBC Norfolk, state broadcaster to my spiritual homeland. So I clicked on the link.

Who knew? Blunty's family is from Norfolk! Jimmy dropped the "o" from his name, going from "Blount" to Blunt" in order to appear slightly less posh (a tall order for a former member of the Queen's Life Guard) but as the BBC Norfolk interview says "say the name Blount in north Norfolk and his family's link with Cley Windmill is sure to pop up in conversation."

Further reading revealed that James Blunt's dad owned and operated the mill (pictured above) as a bed and breakfast; the very bed and breakfast I tried to book Country Mouse and myself into after my mum's wedding in 2004. I wanted to take Country Mouse up to North Norfolk on a nostalgia filled stomp around places from my childhood and around the home towns and villages of my maternal grandfather's family.

About three months before we were due to travel, I called the Cley Mill to see if I could book a room and the man who answered the phone laughed in my face! Furthermore, when I asked if he could recommend anywhere else locally given that he had the great fortune to be fully booked, he said something to the effect of "you'll be bloody lucky you filthy peasant" and hung up on me!

Of course I was able to book a room at the very next place I contacted, the exceedingly agreeble Blakeney Manor located one village over. And while on our vacation, Country Mouse and I enjoyed a charming walk across the salt marsh that seperates the two villages, a walk that culminated in my standing in the parking lot of the Cley Mill flicking Vs* at the building while yelling words to the effect that I hoped my great-aunt (who used to run the Bell pub in the neighboring village of Wiveton) used to water his relative's whisky on the sly.

Now I come to find out that the horrible man on the phone (who at the time I described to Mondale as "a Daily Mail reading, moleskin trousered, petty Tory of the sort that gives Norfolk a bad name") could well have been James Blunt's dad. Well bugger me with a toasting fork. No wonder the floppy haired balladeer's songs are so mopey.

Friends of mine have launched multi-year boycotts on half the circumstantial evidence that I have that James Blunt's dad was the one being rude to me. I however will rise above the fray: the sins of the fathers should not be visited on the sons. Even so, I think that the next time I'm back in Norfolk I could well be found a la Lloyd Dobler, standing in the forecourt of the Cley Mill at 2am, hoisting aloft a boombox from whose speakers blast You're Beautiful at full volume.

Revenge is a dish best served cold.

(*The English finger).


Mondale said...

Well, I shant purchase any of his LPs. And I shant visit that mill. And I never buy the Daily Mail anyway. And I sdhall take up piunctuation one day. Iam not mad.
I love boycotts!

youthlarge said...

little known fact: "you're beautiful" was written about mr. blount.

weasel said...

Mondale, I've been boycotting both Geoffery Boycott and Rosie Boycott for years, just for the sheer Brandreth-ian word play of it. I fully believe that Colonel Blount (Rtd) looks like Ronald Ferguson, all double breasted blazers and flesh coloured highlights.

Youthlarge, quite so, quite so. And from what I hear, Goodbye My Lover is full of cryptic sex references to the late Queen mum from Blunt's time in the army.

bri said...

Whoo-hoo! Foundation-less boycotts rule!

Weasel's little bruva said...

You can't beat a good boycott, and the more obscure the reason the better.

I for one have deprived myself the joys of an iPod based solely on an article I read over someone's shoulder on the Tube about someone who had been mugged three times for his iPod, when this chap was advised by the police to change from the white headphones to another colour he refused as no-one would know he had an iPod.

My issue is not that I might get mugged but rather that if someone like that had an iPod I did not want one.

It was on this basis I also refused to buy U2's last CD as a song was used on an iPod advert, a classic case of the secondary boycott.

Mondale said...

Anyone got any good tertiary boycotts?

Mondale said...

I boycott the best sailing shop in Norfolk as it's run by a prick. This one hurts but it's worth it.

weasel said...

I love that my boycott is essentially effort free- I'm not boycotting James Blunt so I can continue to torment Listmaker; instead I'm boycotting a b&b 3,500 miles away in the full knowledge that I don't really care for b&bs, and that its unlikely that I'll be going anywhere near North Norfolk on holiday for a while.


country mouse said...

Weasel, you failed to point out that you are also boycotting ipods based on the fact that your brother decided to. Thats like a triple unfounded boycott.

weasel said...

True, true. I do trust my little brother's irrational judgement. For what it is worth, I'm also boycotting the term "podestrian", a name for someone walking while wearing an i-pod, as it is unbearably twee.

Listmaker said...

i don't quite understand the ban of the ipod. please explain, little brava.

podestrian? ouch.

i love james blount.