THE DECK OF CARDS
by
Les Barker
During the North African campaign of the 7 years Franco-Prussian War of the Spanish Succession, a bunch of soldier boys had been on a long hike and found themselves in Macclesfield.
The next day being Sunday, they went into a church. One of the Franco Prussians saw one of the soldier boys take out a deck of cards, and said: 'Soldier; put away those cards."
The next day, the soldier was taken before the Provost Marshal. The Marshal spoke to the Franco Prussian, saying "Frank, why have you brought this man before me?
"For playing cards in church, Sir.
"What have you to say for yourself, son?"
"Much, sir," said the soldier.
"I hope so; for if not, I shall punish you more than any man was ever punished."
The soldier replied, "Well sir, when I see the ace, I think of what they call frozen water in Cheltenham.
When I see the two, I think of the two stomachs of half a cow.
And when I see the three, I think of the number of horsemen of the apocalypse when Pestilence is having a day off to run in the 2.45 at Ascot.
And when I look at the four, I think of the number of legs on part of a centipede.
When I see the five, I think of the number of trotters on a pig, and a spare one we've got in the fridge.
When I look at the six, I think of the number of votes Norway have got in the entire history of the Eurovision Song Contest.
When I look at the seven, I think of the Ten Commandments.
When I see the eight, I think of the number of trotters on a pig, cos I've just ate 'em.
When I think of the nine, I think of the number of trotters there would be on three horses if they were all pigs and had a leg missing.
When I look at the ten, I think of the number of Lords a-leaping some swine left on the doorstep after Christmas.
And when I see the Jack, I think of the number of trotters on a pig if it's left overnight in a car park in Brixton.
When I see the Queen, I think perhaps I'm in the wrong bus queue.
And when I see the king, I think: What's Elvis doing working in Tesco?
And when I see the four suits, it reminds me how many suits I'd have in the wardrobe if I had another four, and a wardrobe.
When I add up the number of cards, it comes to fifty-two, the number of weeks in the last half of last year and the first half of this year.
There are twelve picture cards, the number of eyebrows on six armadillos.
When I add up the spots, it comes to three hundred and sixty five, and I am reminded of a small bottle of Thousand Island dressing.
So you see, my deck of cards serves me as both a bauble and an Armagnac.
And folks, this story's true; I know; I read it in the Sun.
The end