YOU 'AVE MADE A NICE OLD MESS OF IT
 
Gus Elen
 

Don't think that I'm Dick Whittington what slept on 'Ighgate 'ill
And afterwards woke up to be Lord Mayor
Tho' you'd think by this 'ere photo taken of me when a lad
I'd 'ave been a chap what got on anywhere
I thought the same as Whittington, I'd 'ear the bells of Bow
And to be Lord Mayor too the chance I'd seize
So up 'Ighgate 'ill I crept, but since upon the brow I slept
I've 'ad nothing but rheumatics in my knees
(then to photo of himself)
A pretty chap you was to try and do the same as Dick
You fat-'ead you, to think that you could do the Lord Mayor trick.

Chorus: Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it
You said now, didn't you? you'd be Lord mayor
At a public 'ouse in 'Ighgate called the 'Twinkling Star'
Some feller closed your eye up for Lord mayoring in the bar
No bells rung out for you, although they nearly wrung your neck
Then Colney 'atch, they gave you the address of it
Then you silly-looking josser, they threw you in 'Ighgate pond
Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it.

I thought I'd be a bookie once, so down the Lane I bought
A bus-conductor's satchel second 'and
I'd carried lots of 'ods up ladders in my time
So thought to lay the odds 'twould be a change quite grand
This top-'at I was married in I perched upon my 'ead
And like a 'uman draughtboard I walked out
With a loud check suit, you see, that I 'ad bought for six and three
Off a showman who 'ad popped it up the spout
(then to photo of himself)
You silly-looking-monkey, you, to try and make a book
I feel I'd like to pull your nose, each time at you I look.

Chorus: Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it
I'd be ashamed of me if I was you
To think you went and paid out all your bloomin' tin
'Cos you 'eard from the stable 'Monkey Nuts' was going to win
The bookies tarred and feathered you, you walked 'ome in the rain
Dressed like Maud Allen, only there was less of it
Then a savage dog flew at you, where you daren't show the mark
Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it.

I think the worst luck in my life was when
I tried to be like Rockyfeller buying all the oil
For the luck I got was being burnt out of my 'ouse and 'ome
And my future 'opes it seemed somehow to spoil
I filled five barrels with it and the cistern too, as well
But I quite forgot to tell my old gal Ria
And it burnt the 'air all off 'er 'ead when she filled the kettle up
With some paraffin and put it on the fire
Silly monkey, all through 'er 'ead it caught alight
She fled with all the kids and ain't been seen not since that night.

Chorus: Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it
You said as 'ow you'd set the Thames on fire
But your proud position now that you've spent all your quids
Is - got no 'ome, and got no oof, and got no wife and kids
And now you're wanting for a crust the people pass you by
Your agony they'll never even guess of it
And now to find the gutter is the only 'ome you've got
Oh, you 'ave made a nice old mess of it.

 
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Written by Joe Burley & Gus Elen - Composed by Maurice Scott - 1910
Performed by Gus Elen (1862-1940)
From monologues.co.uk Music Hall Lyrics Collection
 
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