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A Fitzrovian Evening

For those of us of a Wodehousian disposition, life can occasionally be very difficult. There are few Jeeveses in today’s harsh modern world. There are yet fewer bemonocled Psmiths, impeccably dressed and always up for some sort of dashing adventure.

We wander about, us Wodehousians, reading away in every spare moment and heaving the occasional resigned sigh that life has become so lacking in linguistic finery. Every once in a while we meet another Wodehousian and there is great rejoicing. (Also frequently a lot of wine, but that is neither here nor there.) But mainly, we are solitary creatures of a retiring disposition, longing for a world that was paradoxically both simpler, yet more full of hijinks.

It is for this reason that I became deeply excited to read about the Fitzrovia Radio Hour. 1940s radio show? Live at the Ambassadors Theatre? With sharply-cut dinner jackets and those RAF airmen accents? That, Jeeves, would appear to be chockablock full of sublime “What-Ho!”ing and “I Say”ing.

(The sharp-eyed reader will inform me that Jeeves made his first appearance way back in 1917, which is not in fact in the 1940s. The sharp-eyed reader will kindly shut up.)

So, I booked tickets with a friend for Valentine’s Day. At first I was keen to avoid going on Valentine’s Day, for there will be moony couples everywhere clogging up the auditorium and I’ll be tempted to kick them like wayward pigeons. However, I was talked round on the basis that the tickets were slightly cheaper, and we are both hard-nosed bargainers. (More money for Wodehouse books!) And I probably won’t kick anyone. Probably.

This leaves me with only one problem: what does one wear to a 1940s radio hour? Twinset and pearls? Great big hat? Can I wear my long velvet cape? (Actually, I know the answer to that last one. I would wear my long velvet cape to the opening of an envelope.)

Loyal readers, I look forward to wrestling with that problem as the Fitzrovia Radio Hour grows nigh. I shall update you on my choice, and on the general spiffingness and dapperness of the evening at large. Until then, pip pip!

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