Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Happy Valentine's Day

Roses are assurance of the goodness of Providence.
Violets are four.
While Watson needs Holmes,
Holmes needs Watson more.

Friday, 9 February 2018

Monthly Meeting Minutes - 9th February 2018

The Shingle of Southsea Holmesian Society
Monthly Meeting Minutes

Date of Meeting:
9th February 2018

Location of Meeting:
The Sherloft, My House, Portsmouth, UK

"The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller)

"The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) apologised to himself for being 10 minutes late. Fortunately, Paul was also late, so it didn't really matter.

The Toast:

"The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) gave the following toast to Mrs Hudson, reflecting on how the rent went from being moderate enough for two batchelors of modest means in STUD to being "princely" in DYIN.

Of every indoor shooting range
Or malodorous experiment,
Mrs Hudson won't complain,
She'll simply raise her tennants' rent.

She doesn't mind the street rats
Who always come and go.
She won't complain when colonels
Shoot through her window.

For Hudson is a pragmatist
With patience Heaven sent.
She'll never ever raise the roof,
She'll only raise the rent.

So drink to the landlady!
Drink your drinky fill!
Hudson here will pour the drinks
(And then present the bill).

Unfortunately, at the end of the toast, Paul remembered he can't drink anymore because it doesn't mix with his medication, so he had to go downstairs and swap his port for some weak blackcurrant cordial. By which time, the moment had passed.


1. "The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) once again suggested that we should try to get some more members. Once again, no one seconded the motion.

2. "The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) suggested that we should recite 221b by Vincent Starrett at each meeting of The Shingle of Southsea. It seems that Steven Rothman questioned the validity of The Shingle for not already doing this.
However, no one seconded the motion.

3. "The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) suggested an annual awards ceremony for the society. He seconded it himself and the motion was passed unanimously. "The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) offered to personally put up a five quid prize fund as long as he could be on the panel of judges. All agreed. Details to be confirmed at a later date.


"The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) told us that he'd been 'round Rudyard Kipling's place the other day and happened to find the original version of his poem "If..." which he presented to the society.

If... (Original Version)
by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your hat when all about you
  Are losing theirs and dropping their goose;
If you can trust yourself when policemen doubt you,
  But make pithy remarks for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
  Or, lying about, use the press to spread useful lies,
Or being hated catch those haters,
  Who shoot your bust between the eyes;

If you can theorize — but not before one has data;
  If you can see — but make observing your aim,
If you can meet with Besting and Being Beaten
  And call the latter "The Woman" instead of her name:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
  Used to gain credit by Scotland Yard fools,
Or watch the Napoleons you hunted for, broken,
  And stoop to pluck from them long lost jewels;

If you can make one heap of all your cushions
  And sit on them with long legs crossed,
And smoke an ounce of shag tobacco,
  And solve crimes despite the sleep you lost:
If you can force your heart and base emotions
  To submit until they're all but gone,
And so preserve a calm and balanced mind
  Except when Evans shoots Watson,

If you can use street urchins to fight for virtue,
  Or work with Kings — and give their purse a touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
 'Cause you test alkaloids on them too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
  With your own seven-per-cent nostrum,
Yours is the Earth and the Sun that goes 'round it,
  And which is more: you'll be a Consulting Detective, my son!

"The Entire Canon" (Paul Thomas Miller) presented the following workplace first aid poster he made based on the ministrations of Dr John H Watson observed in the Canon.

(it is overly big. sorry.)

Any Other Business:

It was noted that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, isn't as much fun.

It was noted that when Holmes stated in The Adventure of the Five Orange Pips that he had "been beaten four times - three times by men, and once by a woman." this was a clear statement reflecting his forward thinking about sexual-fluidity and an admission that he found sexual excitement in submissive behaviour. It was also noted that at the age of 33-35 (depending on which chronology you subscribe to) it was a shame that Holmes had only ever permitted himself such release four times.

The next meeting was scheduled for 9th March 2018 at 8pm.

Here is a photograph of The Shingle of Southsea enjoying their meeting: