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When in doubt, go with the willy joke

I bet you thought Canterbury was all cathedrals and Chaucer and dignified shit like that. Well, it turns out all the naughty seaside postcards confiscated by the police in Kent ended up in the University Library. They’re on display in Canterbury at the moment.

I’ve written about the tradition of naughty postcards before. For a brief period in the Fifties, Britain got a huge case of the vapors (or ‘vapours’ I suppose) about it and confiscated the ones they considered over the line. Donald McGill, the most famous maker-of-rude-postcards, even got hauled into court and had to swear on a bzillion Bibles that he didn’t get the joke and certainly didn’t intend any rude double meanings in his illustrations.

Poor old Canterbury (changing the subject). It’s just inside our traveling distance for a day trip, but I find it a sad place to visit.

Hitler bombed it flat, quite on purpose, along with any other historic towns he could reach. They’re called the Baedecker raids, because it’s believed der Führer picked up a Baedecker guidebook to Britain and ordered explosives dropped on every place with a three star rating.

This probably makes me a horrible person, but thinking about that makes me feel sicker than all the WWII carnage and human misery we see endlessly on the History Channel.

Anyway, he somehow missed the honking huge cathedral in the middle of the town. And the Roman wall. The rest of it, pretty much blowed up or burned out. It’s kind of like a big shopping mall now. Every once in a while, you’ll turn a corner and see a 15th Century pub between the greeting card shops and book stores and get a glimpse of what the place must have looked like seventy years ago.

March 4, 2013 — 11:56 pm
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