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The latest Phil Evans column – February 07

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The latest Phil Evans column – February 07

Posted By RobertLloyd58


“The Book Of Heroic Failures” by Stephen Pile was published in 1979 and became a No1 Best Seller.

I only read the first few pages because the bloke thumbing through a copy in WH Smith’s got annoyed with me peering over his shoulder, asking him to turn the pages a bit slower.

I recently found a copy of the book, in good condition, on sale for 50 pence in a local charity shop.

After haggling over the price with the lady behind the counter, I handed her a shiny 20 pence piece and went home with my prize.

When I checked the index, I was astonished to find that the book that ‘Celebrates human inadequacies in all its forms’ doesn’t mention my Uncle Cledwyn, who was responsible for some of the 20th Century’s most heroic failures.

Loyal readers will recall that my Uncle Cledwyn lives alone in a small cottage in a remote part of the Wye Valley and has a habit of walking around his abode completely naked – although, on the rare occasion someone should come to his front door, he does have the good manners to put on a trilby hat.

Cledwyn likes to say he lives an ‘Off grid’ lifestyle, but the truth is he actually lives off deliveries from the local village shop!

The delivery driver, rather than risk seeing old Cledwyn as naked as nature intended, drops off the supplies 100 yards from the cottage, gives three blasts on the horn and hurriedly drives off before Cledwyn has reached for his trilby and opened the front door.

So, I hear you ask . . . “What were Cledwyn’s heroic failures?”

There’s not enough room to list them all, but, as a very young man he invented the ‘

fridge magnet.

Unfortunately, he failed to make any money from it because it would be another 10 years before someone invented the fridge.

Perhaps his biggest failure was his attempt to invent a penetrating oil that could lubricate rusty metal.

After 38 failed attempts to get the formula right, he decided to give it just one more try.

But, sadly, WD39 didn’t take off . . .


Love is in the air.

Remember the good old days when the local petrol station only had petrol, oil, and bags of coal?

It’s amazing how times have changed!

Nowadays, petrol stations are like mini-supermarkets, fully stocked with all kinds of goodies.

And this is especially great news for all the men out there, considering Valentine’s Day is just around the corner!

Gone are the days of last-minute panic when you realise you forgot to buy chocolates, cards, or flowers for your loved one.

Now, you can simply swing by the petrol station and find everything you need to save the day. It’s like a relationship-saving oasis right there at the pump!

But let me tell you, Welsh men have an extra stroke of luck.

We have St Dwynwen’s Day on January 25, which is like a three-week pre-warning for Valentine’s Day. It’s like the universe is giving us a gentle nudge not to forget. How thoughtful!

I remember last year, I decided to surprise that special person in my life with some beautiful flowers for St Valentine’s Day. And guess where I got them? At my local pub!

The landlord was so touched by the gesture that he displayed the flowers in a vase on the bar. Talk about spreading the love!

So, next time you find yourself in a last-minute Valentine’s Day frenzy, remember that petrol stations are not just for fuel anymore.

They are your one-stop-shop for saving relationships and making romantic gestures. Who would have thought?

And hey, if you’re feeling extra lucky, maybe you’ll stumble upon a petrol station that offers relationship advice, too. Now that would be something!

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Written by RobertLloyd58

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