Gertie by Cyril Fletcher

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Gertie by Cyril Fletcher

Postby jaydee » July 21st, 2012, 11:59 pm

I am sure I remember the following but don't know where it fits in to the tale.

The cafe clean as clean can be
Might hide behind it's posh exterior
A cook with methods most inferior
Who licking her fingers passes on
Her germs to your con-fec-tion
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Re: Gertie by Cyril Fletcher

Postby Paul » July 22nd, 2012, 10:11 am

Hi Jaydee,

Those words are very familiar and I can actually recall the cartoon showing an embarrassed cook, caught licking her fingers.
If part of the same piece, then there must be at least 2 verses missing.
I can't remember where I got the original text for 'Gertie', possibly via the old message board.
It doesn't appear in Cyril's book of 'Odd Odes'.
I shall have to do a trawl of the public information film sites.
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Re: Gertie by Cyril Fletcher

Postby davkar » November 17th, 2012, 8:53 am

In the 1950s and 1960s the BBC regularly aired a black and white cartoon with a voice over poem narrated by Cyril Fletcher (or was it Wilfred Pickles) about the virtues of hand washing and good kitchen hygiene. As a child growing up at that time I had the poem memorized.

The lines I still remember are:

"Eight" exactly Gertie's stretch,
A not too greedy little wretch.
Was taken after school to tea,
For a birthday treat by her auntieee.

Next day dawned, as next day will,
To find poor Gertie proper ill.
She cried out, "Come here quickly Mum,
I've an awful pain inside me tum."

The doctor came and shook his head,
“It's not a chill or sweets,” he said.
"Perhaps the food you've given Gertie,
Was chopped up when your hands were dirty."

Upon this Mum was really hurt,
She said, "In my home there's no dirt."
The doctor said, "In general terms,
On your hands are lots of germs.

The cafe clean as clean can be,
May hide behind its posh exterior,
A cook with methods most inferior
Who licking her fingers passes on
Her germs to your confection

Before preparing food you ought ta,
Wash your hands in hot soapy water.
At high degrees of heat they die,
If merely warm they multiply".

This story was made up, did you guess?
And here's it's message to impress.


I think there is more in the middle about other possible sources of germs but my memory has let me down.

Hope this helps - let me know if you ever find the whole thing.
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Re: Gertie by Cyril Fletcher

Postby Paul » November 18th, 2012, 11:27 pm

Davkar, you're a star!
Wilfred Pickles!... there's a name from the early days of telly. It's possible I suppose but I always assumed it was Cyril Fletcher, then again, I'm also the one who recently went to Tesco wearing his slippers!!!
Anyway, the extra lines are going straight into the existing verse.

There was another public information film on telly about the same period concerning a little car involved in a collision and ending up in a hospital bed with, I think, his front wing in a sling and a bandage on his indicator. In the next bed was an older and wiser car. I used to know all of it when I was younger but all I recall now is:

...That wise advice from the adjacent bed,
He remembered everything he said,
Success is sure if your driver's showed
A copy of the highway code...

Many thanks for posting.
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