Yesterday one year ago and a mysterious smell wafted across the English Channel invading the Kentish shores. Some secret weapon in the titan battle of the Six nations?
Kent. The ‘Garden of England’.
Hazy childhood days of orchard blossom snow.
Aglow with scented esters of forbidden fruit
that left us reeling there,
feeling through our way in life.
The cloying, miasmic perfume in the air
of heavy, oily, hoppy vines.
But remember Agincourt.
Lubrizol was the culprit’s name.
From Rouen it came.
Wafting o’er the northern plains of France
across la Manche
an evil tranche of rotting corpse,
gut-wrenching, throat-catching, nostril-clenching,
The ‘French Stench’ they called it,
that smell from hell.
Unleash the dogs of war.
I tell you now their secret’s out.
They’ve blown it.
It’s that time of year again when titans clash,
when Gallic cock is matched
against the bully-beef of England.
The front row’s where the battle’s won,
the crash of brawn on brawn,
sinews stretched, muscles torn.
But this year the French have gone too far,
in trying to call the tune.
From garlic, sweat and rotten eggs
they’ve brewed an essence, an ‘eau de pong’,
to which they are immune.
Their props bathe in it all night long
and, come the day, they spray more on.
Come the day when Gallic cock meets Anglo-Saxon beef
the English team’s belief won’t overcome
the dumbing, numbing chloroform,
(the nom-de-guerre of eau-de-pong)
that seeps from every Frenchman’s pore.
22nd January 2013 – headline from Reuters
Notes: “Rotten eggs stench reaches UK after French gas leak”. A cloud of harmless gas smelling of sweat and rotten eggs leaked out of a chemicals factory in northwest France and wafted across the English Channel as far as London on Tuesday. Lubrizol France, said the gas was mercaptan, a colourless additive used in natural gas because its sulphurous smell enables gas leaks to be detected. The Paris police department issued a statement saying the gas posed no health risks but warned that it smelled like a mixture of “sweat, garlic and rotten eggs”.