I originally wrote this dit back in the 1980's and gave it a tweak for the millenium. With a little tuc here and there it's still more alive than Anne Robinson... â€˜Twas midnight in Portsmouth and district the Gestapo was out on the beat, On the look-out for arson and murder and matelots asleep in the street. The Joss Manâ€™s secret agents, with a notebook full up with names, So that when they discovered a problem, theyâ€™d have some bugger to blame. Theyâ€™d been trained in the Table procedure and could handle themselves in a fight, But with armbands and nightsticks and notebooks they really just wasnâ€™t that bright. They were sneaking a fag when they found it, a dirty great sack so it were, All full up with battered in body, with tyre marks scorched down itâ€™s hair (nearly rhymed). Following their usual procedure, they kicked it â€“ to make sure it were dead, Then they tuned out itâ€™s pockets and shared out itâ€™s cash, and smoked all itâ€™s fags while it bled. So they picked up this hulking great body, one at itâ€™s head and itâ€™s feet, Then they took it down a back alley, and dumped it on a civvy copâ€™s beat. Three hours later they found it, propped up in a fish shop door, It was naked by now and the note round itâ€™s neck, said â€œThis oneâ€™s a matelot, itâ€™s yours. So they took it back to the dockyard, where the MO inspected the stiff, From the absence of heartbeat and movement he declared that it must be a Tiff! The forms to fill out were endless, with copies to Nelson and Drake, And arrangements were made for a funeral â€“ but some bugger made a mistake! It wasnâ€™t sent to the boneyard, but the Admiralty building instead, It was labelled up â€œHat Stand, Officerâ€, rather than â€œMatelot, Deadâ€. It was stored away in an office, in a corner out of the way, Where it rotted and mouldered and festered, That is, until one fateful day. An admiral left in a hurry and forgot where he hung up his hat. So youâ€™ve now got a corpse with a cap on â€“ in an Admiralâ€™s office at that! Well you know what theyâ€™re like up in London, Iâ€™m not saying theyâ€™re weak in the head. But that corpse is still making decisions, and no buggerâ€™s noticed itâ€™s dead! That now is the end of my story, as tales go itâ€™s tall, Iâ€™ll allow, But can you give me one better reason â€“ for the state that the Navyâ€™s in now. PS Since we saw in the year two-thousand and toasted the century anew I have to ask this question... Do you reckon Downing Street too?