J.B. Morton was for many years the author of the Express
's By The Way
column under the pseudonym Beachcomber
. He was in my view the best of the Beachcombers (yes there have been a few) because of his wide variety
of characterisation and his timelessness. As well as this, he often started a spoof serial
at episode fourteen just to keep people guessing.
Out of his many characters, some of the most famous were:
Narkover School, with its headmaster Dr Smart-Allick, and with a casino called a library to impress the governors, and with a matron who dispenses wine to the students instead of cough syrup.
The Filthistan Trio, who would never be allowed nowadays because of the racist content of their adventures, who are adult seesaw players and write very poor English, and who have an amusing episode with a manager because of his use of the word actually, which he pronounces like their word for manure.
Great White Carstairs, a fiercely nationalist British ambassador, who salutes every time he phones the Foreign Office and cannot eat in one story because he has lost his dress trousers.
Last, but definitely not least, his most famous character Justice Cocklecarrot, from the Court of Uncommon Pleas, who is called upon to try several unusual cases including one where the plaintiffs are trying to sue themselves, one concerning the ruining of a non-existent item, whether a cow on wheels can be called a vehicle, and many cases involving varying numbers of, but usually a dozen, red-bearded dwarves.
I don't know why it's funny, I just know I like it. I'm sure you would too if you bought a collection of his works, or listened to one of the excellent radio adaptations by Richard Ingrams on BBC Radio 4.
If J.B. Morton were still with us, he would be an excellent noder on Everything.