Sir John in Nuneaton!

Benedicitee, good sires and ladyes alle! Thisse daye I am in Nuneaton, in the Warwickshirre, returnyng from Scotteland and Northumberlond, in they wiche contrees I have yspent the laste monthe. (Mine belye, of whych I sore complayned, ys nowe muchel bettre, and I thanke alle who were concerned for mine digestioun.)

Verily, readeres myne, I have ycome uppon verray stinkynge treasoun here in Nuneaton, and I am embroiled in falsnesse and perfidee! Ah, but I lose my waye, and I schal telle yow of howe I came ynto Nuneaton.

I am on my waye to Leamington Spa, in thatte place to see to the kynges privee busynesse, and yesternyght I came ynto Nuneaton. Methoughte yt was a pleasaunt towne, and I hadde heerd telle of a fyne market heere. Yt plesede me to stoppe at a taverne, there to have a draughte to drynke and to ete. (I prefer the Lytel Chef, of course, but I koude nat fynde one.) So I came unto the Chicago Rock Cafe, the wych taverene announced on a boarde outsyde a speciale on "garlic pizza bread", the wych sounded good to myne palate. So ynne I wente, and I gat for mynself thys garlyk breede and a delicious draughte knowne as a Long Islande Iced Tee. Tee I have nat hadde synce I was in the realme of Prester John, eeste of Ynde and atte the begynnyng of the daye, and I was of greet good cheere to fynde it in Nuneaton. (Butte thys tee ys nat wholly lyke the tee of Prester Johnnes realme; thys tee hath muchel spirit and ys sweete without sugre. Mayhap thys longe isle ys a place in the tropicale Yndes that hath by nature sweete, potente tee.)

As I partooke me of myne pizza breede and tee I looked rounde aboute me, and I espyed three gentils atte board, two menne and a fayre ladye. Manye an emptye botle of J2O was aboute that ladye, and the menne were drynkynge a beere knowne in Allmanne, yclept lager. I ordered anothre tee. The gentils, yt semed me, myght provide good companye, so I bidde them good cheere and presented myne-self as Sire John Mandeville, knyght, though that I unworthi am.

Readeres all, they semed nat impressed. I tolde them of myne booke, the whych ys a "best-sellere". They semed nat impressed agayne. I tolde them of the tee that I hadde in the realme of Prester John, and I ofred that lyke to procure for us alle. Thys impressed them.

O, the perfidee! The menne wyth whom I fell in companye were y-plotting verray treasoun! Readeres, there ys in Nuneaton a ladye who ys, by eleccioun, the Nuneaton Carnival Queene, who ys enthroned in glorie atte the carnivale, whyche ys in the fayre summre, in June. "But the girls who get to be queen, who are in the running, see, they're a bunch of stupid slags, and every year I lose," sayde the ladye--who, readeres, was nat no ladye at alle, and no gentil neyther! She sayde moore: "So we's going to make sure that I win. We's gonna bribe the jury. Plus the usual threats and intimidation to the other girls, a course." The two menne made punchynge gestures wyth their fystes.

O, gentils, I knewe nat whatte I scholde do! As yt was, I was a lytel dronke from the tee, and I excused myne-selfe. "Y have y-cutte myne foote, and myne boote is fillynge wyth blode," I sayd. "Good to meete yow, though." And thenne I lymped awaye.

I muste warne the Nuneaton Carnival Queene of thys foul treasoun that ys being plotted agaynst hir successours! Off, thenne, I go!

9 comment "Sir John in Nuneaton!"

  1. Alackaday! Sir John, thou art a verray mensch to do this servisse to the good burghers of Nuneaton!

    Ah, the world, the flesh, and the devill!

  2. Richard, second of that name, kyngeMarch 5, 2007 at 11:07 AM

    As swich ben nat directed at Ovre Person Royal, it ben nat treasoun. Stille, it ben an felonie mooste fovle. Thart an manne of gode sprite, Sir Johan.

    Houu goeth myn privie businesse?

  3. Madame Sosostris: Dostow an badde coude have?

  4. Mayster Chaucere, youre tidynges of this wicked couen are right soore to heren. Soo mayen we ensaumpel y-taken, I weene, by this vnhappy case of enuy. I see oft in commyn bokes—that menn call magasynes, entytlede Cosmepolitaune, and Mary Claire, and many oother—rede vnto yonge maydes wherefore bethynken hire beuties fleshe and shape, and pryken hem to enuy. And in soche bokes eke reden tacches vpon prykynge of mannes lustes abedde, and rede vnto game and glee. Thereby hy yetten hoote lore, but menn hauen laughes sondry thereat.

    But alas, soche bredes of garleke sauoure I loue well, and hy doon eke me to eten ouermoche, and when that ye madde mencioun of hem, soo vp stert myn appetite. I hauen wonder whether this bredde is better than the kynde of Dominos Pizza, which menn myghten weenen of that name to seemen de Domino in exclesis to comen, but noone mencioun maye I finde in hooly werkes. But pray pardoun my lewede resounynge, for I am noon clerke but oonly a knyght bacchelere.

  5. "and gladly teche"June 2, 2007 at 1:41 PM

    Potent potables upon arriving in Kalamzoo? As you said yourself, o venerable Geoffrey, in the GP,approx line 35, "me thinketh it accordaunt to resoun." Me thinketh so too.

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