'Agree With Everything - Deny Nothing - Embellish All

Friday, October 28, 2005

Cousins Jim. But not as we know it

Cousins Jim. But not as we know it.

No. Not some silica based life form but an attempt to explain the use of the word cousin in Cumbria.

Ray is my cousin.
My great grandmother on my father’s side had a sister who married a Bowes from Workington (I think). You will need a pen and paper for this. The Bowes had a son who married. His wife when he died/left(?) didn’t marry again but had some children from 2 relationships. Ray is the eldest and he is my cousin. Ray has a half sister. She is also my cousin.
My grand father’s brother (my great uncle) was briefly married. His wife ‘buggered off’ (as they say in Keswick) with some chap (again from Workington). They had a boy who they christened with the same name as my grandfather ( first name, second name and surname). He too had a son, named the same way. This chap bears the same surname as me but with the Christian names of my grandfather. He is no blood relationship whatsoever and is currently in Durham jail, not as a screw I hasten to add (that’s my first cousin who was a screw at Kirkham jail – who also bears the same name. The jail bird Tom is also my cousin.
Do you follow me?
Oh … and Mike, who works with me, whose father was in Burma with my father in 1943 is also my cousin.
Are you clear on that?


Blogger boudica of suburbia said...

no, not really!

I'll just stick to what I know best: nodding and smiling.


29/10/05 5:45 am  
Anonymous Eleanor said...

Reminds me of the comedian over here who's entire schtik is to sing a song which explains completely it's the title, which is: I'm My Own Grandpa. I am not making this up.

2/11/05 12:36 am  
Blogger RenMan said...

Ah.. The point I think I was trying to make is that, in Cumbria, cousins do not have to be blood relations. Anybody that you have known for a long time (or better still knew your mother or father) is a cousin. I think that's cleared that up. I think I know that song. Isn't it also teamed with 'Your father's not yor father but your father don't know'?

2/11/05 10:29 am  
Blogger Nick said...

Eleanor - why do you think that the duelling banjos bits of the South have names like 'Cumberland Gap'? Go figure . . . On the other hand, I've never yet gone to a family reunion with the intention of picking someone up.

2/11/05 3:56 pm  

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