More from Our Columnist, the Scabrous Clement Crabbe, of the Rockpools Register, Who Takes a Wry, Whimsical Look at a World Increasingly beyond Parody

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Byline: Clement Crabbe

EVENTS in Burma are being monitored at Heathens, London SW15, home ofthe Putney secularists Clive and Peta Lapse. The Lapses are no great friends ofmilitary juntas. In fact they are paid-up Liberal Democrats. But they have asneaking regard for the way Rangoon's State Peace and Development Counciltreats meddlesome monks.

If only Western governments would do the same to our own priestly confessors.If only London police chief Sir Ian Blair and his sharpshooters would set up amachine-gun nest opposite Holy Trinity Brompton and mow down a few of thosetambourine-rattling happy clappies! Clive came in from another day's hardcampaigning for disestablishment. He turned on the ITV news, saw Burmesesoldiers firing at various orange-robed monastics, and gave a heartfelt cheerof 'Banzai!' Peta, embroidering a nice cover for her hardback copy of RichardDawkins's The God Delusion, looked up from her needlework and said: 'Don't youmean "bullseye", dear?' Militant atheists have not had an uplifting autumn.First there was the way both Gordon Brown and David Cameron used Biblicallanguage in their party conference speeches. Then came all this stuff aboutschools being allowed to teach creationism.

Shooting monks? Clive, who fancies himself a Che Guevara to A.C. Grayling'sGandhi, sighs with envy. Every time he hears Rabbi Lionel roly-poly Italiantenor (Brown).

Blue or that Anne Atkins woman on Thought For The Day he feels his triggerfinger itching.

Perhaps Burma for a winter holiday this year.

GORDON Brown, like Tony Blair, has been quick to express sorrow at fashionablemoments, be it the imprisonment of a fictitious character in Coronation Street(Blair) or the death of a roly-poly Italian tenor (Brown).

But why was there no tribute from politicians this week to Ronnie Hazlehurst,the composer whose work included the theme tunes of Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Emand Last Of The Summer Wine? Hazlehurst mined deep into the soul of England. Hedid far more for our national glue of culture than any Deirdre Rachid orPavarotti. He brought more quiet pleasure to the British people than even thatwellknown comic figure Tony Benn.

'Themes' on the BBC these days do not mean well-written melodies.

BBC2, for instance, has decided on a 'themed' comedy night for Thursdays.

Or as the BBC2 continuity announcer put it, in a forced Geordie accent:'Thursday nights are foonny.' Foonny? We'll be the judge of that thank you, MrGeordie.

LONDON 'saloniste' Lady Taupe continues to find some of the terminology ofpolitics confusing. For instance: this past month everyone, but everyone, hasbeen seeking her opinion. 'Do you think Gordon will go to the country?' theyask.

Go to the country? In Lady Taupe's world going to the country is what you do atweekends. She would be very happy if the Prime Minister went to the countrytoday. Shropshire is perfect at this time of year.

But she hopes very much he will be back in London by Monday morning.

And then there is this talk of the 'Blair Foundation'. Lady Taupe is not naive.She knows Tony sometimes wears a lot of make-up. But need he really have abrand of cosmetic foundation named after him? POSTMAN Ibex, camel of thesuburbs, sits at home, not knowing what to do.

Normally he wanders the garden paths of Metroland with his groaning bag of junkmail, whistling his fruity whistle and greeting customers with a cheery: 'Ifthat dog bites me I'll sue you for compensation. …