STANDARD BREAD
 
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My old woman was as weak as any rat,
Never shook a table cloth and never beat a mat.
If she 'ad a little drop to keep 'er on 'er feet
'Adn't strength to water it so always 'ad it neat.
One day our lodger went and said to 'er
'This Standard Bread is nice.
It'll make you strong as Sandow*
If you've only had one slice.'
She 'ad one slice and, dear oh Lor',
Her strength she hardly knew
She threw the lodger down the stairs
Shoved me up the flu.

Chorus: Bread, bread, bread,Standard Bread.
I'm going to do the washing now the old girl said.
Like a lion she began to scrub,
Pushed my shirt through the bottom of the tub.
Six months washing it was done in 'arf a jiff,
And when she came to bed,
In 'er arms she 'ad the copper,
The mantle and the chopper,
And a little bit o' Standard Bread.

We kept a fowl and 'er lot was very 'ard.
She 'adn't got a single feather on 'er Scotland Yard
When the wind was blowin' 'ard, she couldn't do 'er graft,
'Ad to put a curtain up to keep away the draught.
She tried to mash a cockle-doodle-do next door
Named Chanticleer. He said, 'Pop off I'm busy
You are much too bald old dear.'
She found some Standard Bread one day
And now she's not the same,
She'd hardly got it down her neck
When out the feathers came.

Chorus: Bread! Bread! Bread! Standard bread!
She grew a feather duster on her old bald head.
Ostrich plumes on her, I suppose,
Landed stickers on her parson's nose.
She got married to the cock-a-doodle-doo.
It's a fact, now they are wed.
They're a-cooing and a-billing,
And it's twenty for a shilling
Through a little bit of standard bread.

Our greasy cook was a-screaming down the house.
Standing on the dresser, she was shouting, 'There's a mouse!'
The animal skedaddled. When he took his flight,
Saw her fancy garters and couldn't bear the sight.
I went and got a bit of standard bread and set it in the trap,
And after waiting fourteen hours, I caught that little chap.
The mouse had ate up all the bread. His muscles grew and grew,
And when he saw our old tomcat, you'd hardly think it's true.

Chorus: Bread! Bread! Bread! Standard bread!
The mouse he went and jumped upon the old cat's head.
Lifted up one massive paw,
Caught poor Tommy such a wonder on the jaw.
They got wrestling together on the mat,
And the poor cat dropped down dead.
The mouse, lord lumme,
Got a pussy in his tummy
And a little bit of standard bread.

*Eugen Sandow, the Victorian Strong Man and Father of Modern Day Bodybuilding.

 
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Written and composed by E. Bateman & F. Murray - 1911
Performed by Harry Champion (1865-1942)
From monologues.co.uk Music Hall Lyrics Collection
 
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