PEMBROKE COLLEGE WINNIE-THE-POOH SOCIETY
Minutes of the Extraordinary Elevenses Meeting of the 28th August 1999
Held in: R5, Pembroke College Cambridge.
Present: Ben, Granny, Henry, Rob, Jeremy, Benedict, Kirsten, Jon, Becky.
Apologies: Brian, Rob (his statutory apology for being in France still standing).
Visitors: Mike, Emily.
- Ben opens the meeting. The President of the French Chapter, one of many surprising people here today, demands an interpreter. Henry suggests a UN-style headset.
- Jeremy rings Emily to summon her.
- Granny and Ben are both revealed as embezzlers.
- Ooh! Scantily clad ruling! [I transcribe verbatim - ed.]
- Jeremy is a fool - an apricot one.
- Rob takes over the minuting, in French, which the Secretary is requested to translate [as I here have done].
- We discuss the eclipse and the hard time Granny has had from his parents.
- Becky arrives, says hello, and goes away to read a book. We vote to censure her: F., 3, Ag., 1, Abs., 2, spoilt 1; carried.
- We vote to move the meeting outside, it being a nice day: F., 2, Ag., 2, Abs, 2 [surely three? Ed.]; hung. We buttonhole one Jean-Pierre Robin who decides for for us.
- We vote to censure Jon for being late: F., 3, Ag., 2, Abs., 2; carried.
- The Reading is, "In Which Eeyore Loses a Tail and Pooh Finds One". Rob starts reading it in a French accent but soon finds this irksome and opts for an increasingly effete British one.
- David Henderson approaches but remains at a distance.
- Vote that Robert is a French pillock: F., 3, Ag., 1, Abs., 2, spoilt 1; carried.
- Jon finally arrives, bearing minutes.
- Granny loses fifty acres from his Testaments.
- Rob, reaching the end of the Reading, reverts to the foreign accent.
- Someone says, "I'll be back," and someone else says, "And I'll be Mozart." We pause to wonder about the location of Chris Timms in these strange times. By way of commemorating his absence, we tell Robert the Two Fish Joke, which he has not heard.1 Encouraged by this success, we also tell him the Two Parrots Joke.2
- Thus fortified, we read the minutes of last week's meeting. A small child wanders close to us as we do so but retires nonplussed.
- Kirsten's apology from last week has not been noted: we vote to amend the minutes. F., 2, Ag., 1, Abs., 3, spoilt 2; carried.
- Gina's dog does not have swipecard access.
- Mike and Emily arrive, with doughnuts.
- A spelling error is detected in Jon's minutes: we vote to give him L about it. F., 3, Ag., 0, Abs., 3, spoilt 2; carried.
- Vote to commend Kirsten on the biscuits (that's making them, of course, she's not actually on any biscuits (we checked), that would be silly): F., 4., Ag., 1, Abs., 2, spoilt 1; carried. Crumbs.
- Granny reveals to us all that he keeps his pencils on his Blue Peter tins with ha'pennies.
- The people next to use are speaking French. Rob had not noticed this.
- We record, for the elucidation of knowlessmen, that it makes a difference whether your bowls are round or oval.
- In order to allow the long-absent members to get a flavour of the meetings we have been having this holiday, Jon has brought a selection of older minutes which are now read in some sort of fashion.
- Ben proposes a vote to censure the Society for conspiracy to murder Jeremy. About six other proposed votes are debated, but with due attention to the cast-iron procedure of Poohsoc, they have to be taken in order, including the vote to take them all at once. The votes on this matter fall: F., 2, Ag., 3, Abs., 2, spoilt 1; defeated.
- Vote to censure Jeremy for proposing his own murder: F., 4, Ag., 0, Abs., 2, spoilt 2; carried.
- We try to work out a way to allow Emily to pay her Pooh Levy now, be a member now, and still not be due another levy at the beginning of next term. Various ways to project the meeting or part of it through time to the beginning of next term are discussed, but none are entirely satisfactory, so Emily must remain a guest. We are all sad about this. We therefore vote that the visitors be allowed to vote: F., 5, Ag., 1, Abs., 1, spoilt 1; carried.
- We vote that the Society is Y2K-compliant: F., 3, Ag., 5, Abs., 0, spoilt 2; defeated. Nobody is able to say what Millennium bugs eat. The Millennial dating system is briefly discussed, and the conclusion is that it was the Romans fault. Several people ask loudly what the Romans have ever done for us and are therefore censured for Pythoning in a Meeting: F., 5, Ag., 1, Abs., 2, spoilt 2; carried.
- Rob's glasses are getting smaller.
- The size of the French Chapter is discussed. It would seem to be more of a French Letter. Now that Rob is back over here, what is he? We decide he should be head of the Free French Chapter.
- Rob reports that his mission to censure the entire French nation individually has failed, since they are apparently remarkably indifferent to telepathy, his chosen method of censure communication.
- Jon announces, in Shock Foreign Chapter News, that the President of the Australian Chapter, Miss Michelle Cox, is about (a) to become Mrs. Michelle Connery, and (b) having so done, to come over here semi-permanently after November 29th, during which time she is sure to visit us in Pembroke. Hurrah!
- On inspection, this will mean that we have but one Foreign Chapter whose officers are actually in the relevant Chapter. This is of course the German one, whose President has resigned her membership, but she's there for all that.
- Jeremy: "The sun's come out!" Granny: "So has everybody else in Pembroke... ".
- We debate how on earth we will manage Freshers' Week without a Secretary, and conclude that Yasmin may well be our help in time of trouble as she has been before. We also debate Poohsticks, and how to create a suspect package so as to close the bridges we'd like to play from without actually being detonated by the Police.
- We follow this with a fascinating discussion of traffic-calming in Cambridge ("There, there...").
- Ben apologises in advance for the next four meetings. Granny apologises in case an old 78xxx steam engine should be elsewhere than Cambridge.
- We vote to close, with next week's venue to be announced when it is possible to say: F., 5, Ag., 2, Abs., 2, Spoilt 1.
- There's two fish in a tank, okay? And one says to the other, "How do you drive this thing?"*
* Or: there's two fish in a tank, okay? And one says to the other, "What are we, two aquatic life-forms, doing in this land-based military vehicle?"
- There's two parrots sat on a perch, and one says to the other, "Can you smell fish?"
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