Hoodening Play 1985

(Joe pushes Moll in)
Get in there, Moll, and sort 'em out
We haven't got time for mucking about!
Quieten down, you bloody rabble
They'll never hear us above this babble
Come on, you lot, let's have some hush
We're already late and in a rush
(Joe enters)
All right Moll, that's quiet enough
We don't want them to cut up rough
Before they start to get too bold
Let's get our mates in out the cold
(The rest enter — SPECIAL LINES read)
Down on the farm now, things are hard
Old Dobbin fears they've marked his card
He's destined for the knackers' yard
If Dobbin's sacked, our Boy goes too
Without the horse, he's nowt to do!
I'm too old to take another trade
I'd simply never make the grade
Don't worry, Boy, 'cos I've been thinking…
That makes a change from bloody drinking!
Ignore him, Moll, I'm listening
Our Waggoner is getting old —
Always griping about the cold
What he needs's an understudy
To bail him out in times of worry
Oi, steady! I'm not past it yet!
Unlike our horse, don't need the vet
If the boss says Dobbin's head must roll
I think our Boy'll be on the dole!
Lucky old sod! No longer a worker
I'm proud of being a bloody shirker
No more slogging for a measly shilling
While the gaffer happily makes a killing
Come off it, Sam, and shut your gob —
Unlike you, I want a job
Quiet, you two — Joe's the boss
Could we keep the boy without no 'oss?
The fact is, he's no longer young
His rutting days are truly done
His what?
I only asked
Two year ago, he took a wife
She only seemed to give him strife
The old horse really went quite wild
He even managed to father a child!
We need to rejuvenate our old horse
The gaffer'll keep him then, of course
That way, we'll manage to save the Boy
And keep him in his present employ
Trouble is, this horse don't want to work
Show him a plough and he goes beserk!
Dobbin has got problems medical —
His guts, at times, do sound quite critical!
Our nag, it seems, has mastered the art
Of generating the timely fart
Or p'raps he'll belch, or maybe vomit —
He's as colourful as Halley's comet!
With the promise of some tempting bait
He might be made to demonstrate!
(After production of sprouts, Dobbin demonstrates and hurls 'poops' into the audience.)
You've done it now, you stupid twit
He's gone and sprayed the place with sh…
Hey! That's enough, now! Language, Moll
Let's get back to the matter of the Boy on the dole
Two year ago, his foal did race
And won some ruddy steeplechase!
If Dobbin could go and do the same
Could save the Boy financial pain
You couldn't race Dobbin cor 'struth, what a farce!
He wouldn't win with dynamite shoved up his arse!
Remember what got him moving last time around?
A handful of oats and a song sung as a round
That's right — much better than a bomb in the bum!
A song gets him jumping just like old Red Rum!
All right, let's give it a try
(To the tune of 'The Ash Tree')
Our horse is called Dobbin
And he works like a Trojan
On days when 'e's lazy
We shove a bomb up his bum
Then he works a lot harder, he works a lot harder, he works a lot harder
Well, wouldn't you too?
If that doesn't work
We sing him a song
And that keeps him running
Away all day long
C'm'ere, Boy. If you're saved from the chop
I'll make you a present of my old riding crop
Give him a crack round his hindquarter
And repeat the dose if he starts to falter
Don't hesitate. Don't feel no sorrow —
Belt him like there's no tomorrow!
(Boy mounts and hits Dobbin)
It looks as if he's going to bolt!
He feels the whip and starts to revolt
(Dobbin flattens Joe)
Oh no! He's gone and flattened Joe!
That really is a serious blow
No, he was a silly sod —
Always pompous and playing God
As the boy and Dobbin have shut HIS gob
It's only right they should have his job!
(Sam hands Joe's hat and whip to Boy)
You can't abandon him there to die —
His body'll rot and putrefy
It's too late now, Moll, I fear
Joe'll never see another year
It looks as though we'll need some spades
Don't get too close! He might have AIDS!
Show some respect, you morbid pair
After all these years, it's only fair
He's snuffed it. Let's get out of here
He might not be dead for long, I fear!
Moll: (sobbing)
He bossed us around so many times
But that really was the worst of his crimes
Although it's true I feel quite sad
I'm sorry, Moll. I agree with the lad
Joe would have liked us to go down the pub —
Let's mosey on down for a pint and some grub
We can't just leave him here like that
Cover him with this sheet, you callous prat
At least, we ought to sing a lament
To express our mournful sentiment
Our group's one short with him on the ground
With that in mind, I'll buy a round
(moves off)
The Boy's never bought a round before
I'd better get up off this floor!
(Moll goes into raptures — the others look a bit browned off
He's alive (sings) He's alive, he's alive, he's alive…
Of course I'm alive, you wrinkled old sod
I'm not that ready to meet my God
Here, what are you doing, wearing my hat?
Give it back here, you cheeky young brat
Boy: (mournfully)
Here you are, you have it back
I know that I will be getting the sack
Surely, Joe, your 'death' must prove
We need a deputy to get in the groove
He's right, Joe — that's a good point, that man
(Amazing! We've got an idea from our Sam!)
Shut up, Moll — I'm not that thick
Well, what do you reckon, Joe, you… dipstick?
I've put up with much from all you lot
My job's the only thing I got
Still, there's no use getting into a state
(They say it pays to delegate!)
All right, Boy, you can have a try
(He just might be ready when I REALLY die!)
Thanks, Joe. I'll not let you down
Now I'm heir apparent to your crown
What we need now's a drop of beer
But buying it is getting dear
I think I've got a better idea
Our host here should give us a drink
If he won't, we'll really kick up a stink!
Although I'm thirsty, fit to burst
There is another matter first
Now, once again, we want your money
But for a cause that isn't funny
It's for the good of your ladies' health
So please be generous with your wealth
To finance this plan, they need some backers
So let us relieve you of your ackers
In Thanet and in Canterbury too
They've installed machines that see right through you
In short, they have devised a plan
To give the girls a clear breast scan
It takes pictures of your glands with ease
So doctors can tell if you've got the disease
It helps to provide a quick diagnosis
So's you can avoid the worst prognosis
They've got these handy new inventions
But haven't cash to run 'em, despite good intentions
Your money is needed to keep them in use
And save 'er indoors from cancerous abuse
We know each year you're generous to a fault
So allow us to give their appeal a jolt
We Hoodeners trust that you will do your best
And try to preserve the Great British Chest!
So, while we're drinking your beer and wine
Please open your wallets — five quid'll do fine!
For if ye the Hooden Horse do feed
Throughout the year ye shall not need
While our host gets us all a drink
You've got a while in which to think
Just how much you can afford
While waiting, so's we don't get bored
In case you're going to take too long
We will sing this little song…
We're Hoodening, we're Hoodening, we're Hoodening today
We're Hoodening, we're Hoodening, we're Hoodening today
We're Hoodening, we're Hoodening and we'd like to say
We wish you a Merry Christmas the old Kentish way
We've been on the wireless; we've been in 'Kent Life'
We've been interviewed by the world and his wife
This public acclaim has not borne us much fruit
But we've had a few drinks and got (hic) as a newt
Old Dobbin is what we call our Hooden Horse
He really lets rip after each puddin' course
Though he don't say a word, you know he's been round
For he leaves his reminders all over the ground
We first met our Molly while up at the forge
(She reminded us all of an ageing Boy George)
She belched at the fire, then she downed a stiff drink —
She was used when the gas poker went on the blink
Old Joe got a battering from Dobbin this year
Got a hoof in the groin and a nose in the ear
You know how you feels when you takes a few falls
You gets a bit faint when you're kicked in the… halls
Old Sam is a miser; he don't spend that much
His pocket's so deep it goes under his crutch
Not a pound will he give; not a pound will he lend
And he never lets go of his flexible friend
Our boy's getting older — he now can drink beer
He's been off the shandy for over a year
For much of his life he's drunk soda and lime
But now is the year he makes up for lost time
This year is the twentieth year we've been round
And in those twenty years you've given us a few pound
Over 2,000 nicker over all of those years
But, more to the point, over 3,000 beers!

Produced by Ben Jones (contact details). All rights reserved. .