Thursday, 13 May 2010

A bit of light relief

Here is a rather amusing video that I found on you tube. It features a rather Scottish looking ghost telling Petula Clark to return to England in French.


  1. I see my love for Petula is infectious Munguin. I'll have to let you have the address of her fan club:

    Believe it or not this was a hit for Pet in France, Belgium and Canada. The lyrics aare a bit banal, but some 45 years on, Petula told me that in France people still ask her "Que fais-tu là Pétula? (What are you doing there, Petula?)

  2. What indeed? Any idea why they used a Scottish ghost?

    And what banal things the French associate with the English-Christmas Pudding?

  3. The song is about her ancestor (Mortimer Peabody, a rather English name) who apparently was in 100 years of war with the French “du côté anglaise” (on the English side). He was killed and now haunts the skies above Petula (or Pétula as they call her in France).

    In the first part he admonishes her for being a traitor, marrying a French blokey, and then in the second verse he admonishes her for going to London, because he can’t bear to leave France “even for one night” (meme pour une nuit).

    Apparently French ghosts are so pretty that he has become “naturalisé”

    It’s interesting that the French would associate a Brit with a name like Peabody, and a British soldier with a kilt. Interestingly the British soldier, obviously in a Scottish regiment says “Come back to England”. ..........

    Ah..... plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

  4. I think that she mentions the battle of Fontenoy at 1.26 in. Which took place in 1745 as part of the war of the Austrian Succession. The British were defeated and so I am assuming that is where Uncle Mortimer was killed.

  5. In which case there is a Scottish connection as it was a result of this French victory that inspired Bonnie Prince Charlie to launch the Jacobite rebellion of later the same year. I wonder which side Uncle Mortimer would have been on?

  6. Munguin ah have tae thank ye fer findin' this. Efter the bizarre events o' the past week, it's nice tae have somethin' sae sane an' comfortin' as Pet singin' tae her deid ancestor.

    That widda made a great Eurovision entry. Such a pity Pet never went in fer it. She widda won, ah'm sure o' that.

  7. Munquin,

    Why are you plugging Pet? - when I first read it I assumed it was Tris with his fondness for old ladies in general and this one in particular. I always get her mixed up with Peggy Lee who always enchants me with an uncomparable version of "Fever".

  8. Ouch. I notice that I’m as useless at typing in French as I am in English. Du coté anglaise, not anglaise. Sorry! (Et je m’excuse aux lecteurs français.)

    Aye, Sophia. I think that it would have been a great Eurovision thing, but from what I can make out she never did the Eurovision. It would have been difficult for her to decide which country to sing for.

  9. LOL @ Brownlie.... Yep, you're right, I'm rather attached to Petula (or Pétula) and I'm a bit of a 'Murder She Wrote', Angela Lansbury fan too...

    Come to that I like Peggy Lee as well. Odd that, but I think it is less their ages than their absolutely awesome talent that I admire, and Pet is still a bit dishy: I know, I've had a few kisses and cuddles from her.. and even sung with her on a few occasions... and she can make me sound good.... Now that IS talent.

  10. What's he trying to do with his finger?
    Going down town?

  11. Conan I'm surprised at you!

  12. Conan:

    It would take a special kind of mind to turn an innocent French Top of the Pops type video into a trip Downtown.... I'm shocked!!!!

    Things'll be great when you're

    Everything's waiting for you....

    Yeah right.

  13. I can't quite believe I did that.

    It's "du côté ANGLAIS", for heaven’s sake you stupid half wit boy!

  14. Strange clip. A French singer with a Scots guy fingering her (chin) and Petula singing about England??

    Not my sort of entertainment but I suppose the electrifying video makes up for it lol.

  15. brownlie

    Petula Clark is the Parisian Lulu.

  16. It's a bit 1965 Allan.... I guess not everyone's tastes travel that far back.

    Certainly not Petula at her best I'd have said.

    But I'm rather fond of her as a rule.

  17. Lulu without the wrinkles!!

  18. Munguin: Interesting facts that you have unearthed about the battle... and its connection with Scotland. Pierre Delanoё, the writer, whom I met briefly (weird dude)a few years ago, was maybe a bit of a historian.

    France and Scotland go back a long way....

  19. Tris

    Sorry I never new you were a Petula Clark fan lol. She is a dame though and I was referring to the said clip and not Petula Clark overall as not being my sort of entertainment.

  20. Allan:

    Yeah I love Petula. I learned to speak French because of her, and that opened all sorts of doors for me. She's a lovely person too. I've met her many times and sung with her recently on a couple of occasions.

    Actually believe it or not, she's not a dame. She got a CBE some time ago, but I don't think that kind of thing bothers her much and she said on tv in an interview (in answer to a question) that she hadn't a clue where it was and the last time she saw it her grandson was playing with it... I suspect that the authorities might have thought better of giving her the next one up, given the fact she clearly didn't treat it with much respect....

    Yeah, the clip is daft, but it was 1965, and telly was a bit daft then....

  21. Petula SHOULD be a Dame IMHO, although she seems to take such things lightly. As I understand it, her "Commander of the British Empire" is the middle rank of the five classes of the Order of the British Empire, with two lower, and two higher. The two higher ranks are the ones which carry a knighthood or damehood.

    As for Tris, I have it on unimpeachable authority that only certain live concert audiences have ever heard the Petula-Tris duet version of "Downtown." I continue to hope that it comes out on CD.

  22. Hey Danny:

    I hate all these titles that change people's names. And I only use them when referring to people, I'm poking fun at. Everyone knows Mick Martin (ex-Speaker of the House of Commons) was made a Lord, although the Lords didn't want him. I always refer to him by his title and styles because they are so ridiculous, and some pompous twerps have built up a stack of titles, like Sir Lord Sebastian Coe... all for doing stuff they enjoyed, or got paid for. I like emphasising that they have more titles than the Grand Duke of Austria!

    I take your point that someone like Petula probably should get a dame hood, based on the fact that other people of her stature in show business got one: Helen Mirren, Julie Andrews, Cleo Laine, Liz Taylor, Cliff Richard, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Michael Caine, Sean Connery.

    My point though is that none of them should have got one. And I don’t just mean “popular” entertainers, I mean classical ones too. They may not be paid quite as much, but giving one’s Desdemona is hardly the stuff that titles should be born from. Well, at least that’s my opinion.

    No, this is nonsense. These people entertain for a living. They get paid handsomely because they are good at what they do and have a fan base, and a work schedule to prove it. But they are entertainers. They got their rewards living in Switzerland, Hollywood, the Bahamas...and so on. Why would they need baubles?

    The folk who should get baubles (and maybe the reformer Camerlegg would like to look at this) are the people who volunteer in our hospitals, who work with kids, who give up their time FOR FREE to coach football, or take old people to the hospital or visit in prison.

    Petula Clark has no need of a Dame hood. She can buy all the pleasures she wants after 70 years of hard work (although it seems to me from this year’s schedule that what she wants to do is to sing!). It might help the good citizens a little if they could be rewarded in some way for the years they put in for nothing.

    Just a thought.

  23. Actually, I prefer Francoise Hardy - sorry, can't do the accent - but, alas, "we were only friends".

  24. Ah yeah Brownlie. « Tous les garçons et les filles de mon âge » is a fantastic song. I love French pop from the 60s.

    As for the accents, if you use "Word" and use the "insert" page (second option along the top) there is a "symbol" tab at the top right hand side. You'll get the accents in there.

    If you opt for French as the language (bottom left) it will do your spelling corrections too!!!

    You can see I don't often bother using that! But i type a lot in French and so it is really useful.

    I saw Françoise Hardy recently on French tv, and she's still beautiful with long silver hair.... ahhhhhh. You're right. I'm silly over older women!

    PS I appologise if you knew all that already!! :¬) It's not often I get to be instructive in the sphere of computers.

  25. No, I didn't know that. I'm still trying to work out why a wheel goes round. You're rights she's still lovely and still fair shivers me timbers.

  26. Ah well... you do now Brownlie... and as for the wheel thing... nah beats me. Round you say...? well, I never....