Back in the 1980s, I used to do a spot of performance poetry, and did a guest slot on the Neurotics' album, Kickstarting A Backfiring Nation. Yup, I'm 'The Big J' mentioned on the cover. This became available on CD last year, but I've only just noticed this fact (thanks for not telling me, guys).
Christmas is coming, and all that.
The poem concerned is called 'The Housewife's Trial' and was described by the NME's reviewer as "a hilarious skit on washing powder consumerism". Younger reader may be lucky enough not to remember the various TV ad slogans. But anyway, here it is ...
Your Honour, I'm only a poor housewife
And the one great joy in my boring life
Is to get my laundry white and clean
The light of my life is my washing machine
So this morning I had a terrible shock
Cos the dirt said hot
But the label said not
With the stains on his undies and the dirt on his vest
They'll never pass the window test
It really did come as a terrible fright
I'll never get them bluey white
My powder's crap crap I'm sure that it won't
Shift those stubborn stains that ordinary non-biological washing powders don't
the, all of a sudden, to allay my fears,
A man in a long white coat appeared
He said, "It's new, it's improved, it's the best you can buy,
It's fuckin' amazing, why not give it a try?"
Then more appeared, and very soon
Washing powder salesmen filled up the room
But under all that pressure, my patience snapped
And in the soap powder advert - the housewife strikes back
I attacked them all with piano wire
Put their heads in the machine and their bodies in the drier
I grabbed 'em by the willies and pulled them through the mangle
Spun 'em and wrung 'em until they were strangled
Then I washed 'em and rinsed 'em a couple more times
Hung 'em up by the bollocks from the washing line
I took 'em down and shook 'em to get rid of their crinkles
Put 'em on the ironing board and ironed out their wrinkles
I didn't mean to kill 'em - it was out of frustration
I was sick of being subjected to their patronisation
So I stand accused, Your Honour, of this terrible offence
And the one thing I can say is - it was in self-defence!
God you were an angry young woman Janine!