No Sex Please, We’re British

Fictitious elderly people like Terry Pratchett’s “Nanny Ogg” always come as a surprise to me, and can be downright disorientating. This is because nothing in my youth prepared me for the possible existence of older people who were cheerful, positive and horny – whether or not they actually did anything about that horniness. My expectation was that every woman over say fifty would be a scowling ranter who claimed not to have sex, never to have had it, or at the least to have once had it but not to have liked it. That God had died and left her in charge of stopping anyone else having sex went without saying.

If anyone like Nanny Ogg existed in my youth, I never encountered her, not least because Nanny was unmistakeably working-class, and so my parents would have made sure that their English bourgeois virtues of scowling, lemon-sucking and not having sex were not contaminated by such not-our-kind-of-people-dear. If there were people like Nanny in the upper classes, as I suspect there were, the same quarantine would apply.

Should any young people think that the title of the West End comedy used as my heading was not meant seriously, they are quite mistaken; it is a perfect summation of an epoch or perhaps several. Within living memory.

Posted on August 8, 2011 at 14:18 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink

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