Tuesday, February 22, 2005

The Frightening Thing

For many years now I've been carrying around this postcard in my collection of strange curios. The woman on the front is Madge Crichton, an actress of the early 20th Century, who, on a cursory Google search, seems to have been more famous for her appearance on postcards than much else. There's another photo of Madge at this page - [Link]

Madge is not the reason I've kept the postcard though - this is what's written on the back:
Dear Eileen,

Mick said he did not mean to frighten you he told me what he had it for.

He wants to go over to Burwood next Saturday night but I cannot go over till Saturday week.

I got a lot to tell you when I see you about Ethel

12/10/08 Mary

Now I don't know about you, but I really want to know more about Mick, Eileen, Ethel and Mary, and particularly about the frightening thing that Mick had. Speculations welcome...


Anonymous Cissy Strutt said...

Mick frightened Eileen with a Slightly Unusual Thing - a prototype of the Unusual Thing that Landon Flannagan's father & sister were to perfect nearly 100 years later. Mary wants to tell Eileen in private how much Ethel enjoyed the application of the Slightly Unusual Thing, and to recommend it to her. Mary & Mick were well-known characters in fin de siecle Burwood, Burwood being a hot-bed of cutting-edge mechanical invention from about 1896 til 1911. In february 1911, an explosion in the Mechanical Pleasure Perfection Palace put everyone off inventions for a while.

February 25, 2005 3:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mick was courting Eileen and eventually planned on marrying her. Mary was Eileen's best friend and Mick's sister.

One evening, in a drunken stupor, Mick and some friends decided to go cow tipping (in a little hamlet by the name of Burwood). Unfortunately, they unleashed a tetherd cow (named Ethel), which belonged to Eileen. She loved the cow, it was given to her by her deceased Great Aunt Ethel, the cow's namesake.

When Mick found out what he had done, he was horrified! He searched and searched for Ethel, but all he found was the rope by which she was tetherd.

So, one evening, after much thought and angst, he decided he had to tell Eileen what happened. But, being the typical male that he was, he didn't exactly think through how to go about doing this. So, he visited Eileen with the evidence. Mary happened to be at Eileen's having afternoon tea when she saw Mick walk in...with Ethel's rope.

Mick proceeded to try and explain to Eileen exactly what happened the evening of Ethel's disappearance (well, as much as he could remember), but decided the better of it. So, instead, he asked Eileen if she would like to join him for an evening meal. Being a meat and potatoes man, he informed her that it would be an evening of fine wining and dining -on steak and garlic butter potatoes. Having already seen Ethel's tether, Eileen was outraged!! She immediately kicked Mick out and asked Mary to leave. She was too upset to finish their afternoon tea.

Mary immediately went to her brother to find out the story behind Ethel's disappearance and find out if he really was planning on making Ethel the dinner's main course. After he finished telling Mary his story, he informed her that they should all go to Burwood and try one more time to find Ethel.

Upon leaving his house, Mary wrote Eileen the postcard that has kept your wonderment for all these years.

And what became of Ethel, the tetherd cow? She lived out her days on a farm owned by an old man with the last name of McDonald.

February 27, 2005 12:13 PM  

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