I have been reading Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons, which is quite amusing. I fell in love with the following passages:
Mrs Smiling’s second interest was her collection of brassieres, and her search for the perfect one. She was said to have the largest and finest collection of this type of underwear in the world. It was hoped that on her death it would be left to the nation. She was an expert on cut, fit, colour, construction, and proper use of brassieres, and her friends has learnt that they could interest or calm her, even in moments of extreme emotion, by saying the following words: ‘I saw a brassiere today, Mary, that would have interested you…’ (p3)
Mrs Smiling’s character was firm and her tastes civilized. Her system of dealing with human nature when it insisted on forcing its coarseness upon her way of life was short and effective; she pretended things were not like that, and usually. after a time, they were not. Certain religions take the same approach; they are perhaps larger organizations, but seldom so successful (3).
Don’t you just know you would love to take tea with Mrs Smiling? I for one would like to live in her world, when all the world’s ills are cured by a pretty little bra!
And let’s not forget old Mrs Starkadder who saw something nasty in the woodshed when she was small that made her … different (p52).