World’s campest Robin Hood hat

I am a bit behind with my blogging. I don’t know why. It’s not like I have anything else to do, other than go round the house with a squeegee on a stick, obsessively mopping up the condensation on my single-glazed windows and muttering to myself.

I was tagged a couple of weeks ago by Gappy of the inestimable Single Parenthood ( to nominate three Shiny, Happy Things. It’s taken me this long to come up with an answer, partly because she seemed to have the whole thing sewn up with her holy trinity of tea, Dolly Parton and ‘Total Wipeout’. And partly because I seem to find it easier to come up with things that irritate me, like SHOPPING:


Anyway, in an attempt to present myself as a glass-half-full kind of person, here are my top three happy things:

Give me a large Pimm’s, an HE Bates novel and a view of the Weald (possibly a bit of Vaughn Williams on the iPod, too), and I’m content. Yes, I’m aware just how reactionary that makes me sound. You’re probably picturing me stretched out on a Union Jack picnic rug, swatting away flies with a rolled-up copy of ‘The BNP Times’. I promise you I am not a closet fascist, I’m just middle-aged.

The great American literary critic Harry Levin said, ‘The most protean aspect of comedy is its potentiality for transcending itself, for responding to the conditions of tragedy by laughing in the darkness.’
I say, ‘Hnnnuuhh-huh-huh, look at that man on the jetski! Look! His swimming trunks have fallen down! Hurhurhurhurhur!’

I think this one needs no explanation. What the hell do they put in these things? They’re like crack.

And now I must go and rustle up something suitably butch for my son to wear on World Book Day tomorrow. (Is this dressing-as-your-favourite-book-character nonsense a nationwide thing?) He wants to be Robin Hood. Trouble is, he told his Granddad, who – having never seen the Jonas Armstrong TV series in which Robin and his gang wear chainmail hoodies and camel-coloured suedette trackpants – immediately set to work making the world’s jauntiest-ever Robin Hood hat from green paper, complete with green tissue-paper feather.

It’s so camp even John Barrowman
would refuse to wear it.



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37 responses to “World’s campest Robin Hood hat

  1. As a very proud Nottinghamite I say that’s a very fine Robin Hood hat and not at all camp. xx

  2. not sweet chilli crisps, but the ones that look like mini bits of bacon – Frazzles I think. I can do six packs in a sitting. Belch!

  3. I have always loathed world book day dressing up as I am then shown up as a crap mother who can’t sew and refuses to buy expensive costumes. My son hated it too so he would go in a woolly jumper and trousers and pretend to be Charlie from the Chocolate factory.
    The hat is delightful. Let’s hope it doesn’t rain.

    • notwavingbutironing

      Very Bored and Trish: Granddad will be pleased you found the hat ‘delightful’ and ‘very fine’. I admit, it would look very stylish on Errol Flynn. But on a weedy seven-year-old with mucus permanently dribbling from his nose? Not so hot.

      Ellen A – ooh, yes, Frazzles, another favourite of mine. They formed a large part of my diet when I was a student, washed down with strong lager and mugfuls of Thunderbird.

  4. oh come on, who are kidding, nothing is too camp for John Barrowman!

  5. He could rob from the rich and the poor in that hat. It’s tremendous. Jonas Armstrong was a right wimp.

    And what was it with the packet change for those Sensations crisps? I nearly had a panic attack in Waitrose thinking they’d discontinued Thai Sweet Chilli but they’d just gone for black.

    I can only watch YBF now that Harry Hill is doing the voiceover. Before that, no.

    I’d say we were twins but I can’t stand H E Bates. He was responsible for The Darling Buds of May.

    • notwavingbutironing

      I loathed DBOM as a TV series. It was completely miscast, for a start. I always pictured Pop Larkin as looking like a scrawny Sid James, with bad British teeth and a fag permanently in his mouth. And the kids being a bit feral and dirty.
      As for Robin Hood, I still remember the Michael Praed version. Used to rush home from my Saturday job at Gateway supermarket to watch it. Sigh…

  6. A good friend has a beautiful house on a sort of cliff over-looking the entire Weald and it’s magic. I have told my husband that if and when we ever move back to England, that’s my dream house. I just have to persuade my friend that she needs to sell it. Shoudn’t be a problem at all…

    • notwavingbutironing

      Sounds galling, Expat. I’d stick to friends with 1960s semis overlooking industrial wasteland if I were you. x

  7. i’m very intrigued to find i’ve missed a whole genre of robin hoodies in chainmail and suedette; i’m hoping BBC iplayer will deliver on that particular jewel before they send that product line down the swanny too. loving the thought of the shit medieval haircut!

    • notwavingbutironing

      You haven’t missed much. For those of us who remember Michael Praed’s Robin (late 80s), Jonas Armstrong was a poor replacement. He had all the gravitas of a pair of deely-boppers.

  8. Although you must admit, John Barrowman would look pretty dapper in that hat.

    • notwavingbutironing

      He’d look dapper in most things, Mother. He takes fabulous care of himself. That glowing skin! Those teeth!

  9. Thai sweet chilli’s nice, chilli heatwave doritos are nicer!

  10. The hat is fab I think it really requires full instructions since all I can manage is a cone – and a lop sided one at that. My son went as Alex Ryder every year – he wore a black polo. The same black polo. Every year.

    The Sweet Chilli are alright but I’ll never ever ever ever forgive Walkers for stopping the Lime Thai thingy ones that came out at the same time. Bastards.

    • notwavingbutironing

      Grandpa is quite good at stuff like that – he also makes arrows in his garage sometimes (fletching I believe it’s called, not felching as I malapropped the other day). As for the crisps, those Lime Thai things have disappeared. Perhaps they didn’t have enough crack in them?

  11. m

    I should really be commenting on your shiny, happy things but I can’t get past the photo sporting your new haircut…if you don’t mind me saying, I think you look a tad past middle-aged but maybe it’s just the light…

    Anyway, you’re gonna love me but I’ve only gone and given you an award over at mine so you may have to don your thinking cap (or your son’s camp hat) and come up with a few more!

    • notwavingbutironing

      Thank you v much, Mummmeeee. I am going to get straight on it. Think happy thoughts, think happy thoughts…

  12. So glad to have found your blog, not least because you reminded me how much I used to love my Pippa dolls. What did I do with them (apart from give them bad haircuts)? And I have YBF on series record.
    I made eldest son an Asterix hat with cardboard ‘wings’ but we lost one on the way to school. Not my finest hour.

  13. I have YBF on series record. Nothing is funnier than a grown up falling in water or a teenage boy maring it when doing a bike/skateboard stunt for the (mobile) camera. Good shout.

    • notwavingbutironing

      Hi Knackered, thanks for visiting. My son is Asterix obsessed – perhaps I could stick wings on the Robin hat for next year?
      Why wasn’t YBF on this Saturday? I missed my fix of twats on jetskis getting their briny comeuppance.

  14. OMG I don’t know where to start! Michael Praed or John Barrowman or The Darling Buds of May or Frazzles??? Have you been tapping into my unconcious? You’re scary! And YES Pop Larkin WAS a scrawnier and lustier Sid James – didn’t I always say so – didn’t I? And Ma Larkin was a deeply sexy bitch who was 2 yards wide. And the telly series was devised in cosy-bland-valium HELL for the book is still my absolute favourite book of all time – and I’m no cosy basket-carrying pinny-wearer – and I still need therapy to get over its rape by SundayITV. I’m shuddering even now. Even just the hedonistic mix of ice-cream and crisps as described in the opening page fills me with joy – and the strings and meaningul looks of TV pathos fill me with RAGE.

    Minx and I are convinced that whenever John Barrowman needs to get somewhere fast he’s got a pink siren on his car that plays Dancin’ Queen so whenever we hear that song we wink at each other – knowing a cuban-heeled lap-dog emergency is being taken care of immediately.

    Frazzles, Don’t Go Breaking My Heart and bar billiards in a smoke-filled brown family room in some brown pub in Devon are carved into my psyche as one.

    And Michael Praed………. mmmmmmmmn I remember the leather tunics and Horned (or Horny?) beasts in mist very well. Unfortunately in our house he was known as Michael Prathead. Older brothers.

    Sweet Chilli – HHHhhhhhhhhhhh………things might just be OK again……

    • notwavingbutironing

      Ah Madame, another spooky Vulcan mind-meld! when the weather improves I will invite you over for the annual meeting of the ‘We Love the Darling Buds of Frazzles and John Barrowman and Robin-the-Hooded-Man’ Society.
      Sooooo agree with you about the TV series. ‘Oh, Pop!’ says a winsome Catherine Z-J, the screen mists over, cue whimsical oboe music… Vomit!

  15. Me again – dressing up for World Book Day: how about announcing the little darling is going to be The Invisible Man the day before and everyone stays at home and watches DVDs instead?

    You can tell I have such a regard for educational doings can’t you……

  16. And another thing – You’ve Been Framed – Saturday night sorted. My kids live their lives by doing things that they deem fit to earn £250 off Harry Hill. Comedy genius.

  17. Don’t know if you got my first comment but there’s an award for you over at mine so check it out x

  18. Daaarling – you’re up for an Oscar nomination. Visit my post on BMB (not blog) to see which category you’re nominated in. (no awards to download, memes or tags).

  19. This is scary. Are you me? Or is me you? Loved this. Giggled hopelessly all the way through apart from when I was going… OMG I Like that Too.
    Apart from the Robin Hood thing… haven’ t had to make one of those today. And who knows… John Barrymore might love it. Life is strange. xx

  20. Oh, by the way… each May I read The Darling Buds… and love it each time.
    Favourite crisp?? You guessed it. And used to love Candid Camera… but You’ve been framed will do in its absence.

    • notwavingbutironing

      I think Madame Smoking Gun and I have found another member for the ‘I Love the Darling Buds of Frazzles and John Barrowman and Robin the Hooded Man’ Society! Come over some time and we’ll watch endless repeats of the Michael Praed series and feast on artery-furring salty snacks. x

  21. Was Robin Hood ever in a book (sorry to be pedantic here)? I think just in a legend and a movie or two. But you could probably dig up a book titled “Old Legends” or “Famous Movies” or “Why does anyone ever visit Nottinghamshire?” Those would cover it.

    I think you have posted the most acute and philosophically brilliant comment on capitalism that I’ve ever seen. Marvellous.

    • notwavingbutironing

      You’re right, Iota – Son got a bit confused between ‘books’ and ‘films’. We spend a lot more time looking at the latter than we do the former. As for the ‘Buy more shit’ poster, how I wish I’d thought of it! It’s by those lovely people at Modern Toss. I just assumed people would know I’m not capable of creating such a work of wonder, given the visually-challenged nature of my blog. Can’t even put anything in my sidebar without everything else disappearing!

  22. Hi. There’s something so quintessentially English about a glass of Pimms eh? Always goes well with a nicely tended lawn I find.

    By sheer coincidence my latest post is all about World Book Day, and my childrens contribution to the schools celebrations. They had to dress up as a favourite character from a book too if it’s any consolation, although my middle son managed to get away with going as a power ranger.

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