Disqualified for being sane – is that why Alf’s name is absent from today’s list of new knights?

Alf is sulking again this morning, despite Mrs Grumble’s best efforts to condition him for disappointing news.

If you were in for a knighthood, she was saying last week, the functionaries in charge of these things would have let you know.

Alf remained hopeful.

But no, damn it, he has missed out again.

The best construction he can put on the absence of his name from the list of Queen’s Birthday Honours published today is that they are honouring lunatics these days instead of hard-working, long-serving members for Eketahuna North.


Yep. A gong has gone to a bloke called Peter Leitch, who is described in the Herald as New Zealand rugby league’s biggest and loudest fan.

Anyone who gets excited about rugby league, of course, clearly demonstrates he is at the daffy end of the sanity scale.

The Herald also says Leitch was a working-class boy from Wellington but so far as Alf can ascertain he now lives in Auckland, which reinforces the belief the bugger must be deranged.

And sure enough, the Herald goes on to say he is known as The Mad Butcher.

The Mad Butcher? So how do you get a moniker like that?

Is it his habit to run amok with a meat cleaver?

Alf is astonished.

Obviously, these Royal honours are being dragged down market. That’s not the way it was meant to be, when Eketahuna North’s favourite son was feverishly campaigning for the restoration of knighthoods, damehoods and what-have-you.

But the Herald says:

Sir Peter – a larger-than-life character noted for punctuating his speech with “mate” and “to be fair” and letting drop the f-word now and then – left school at 15 having battled dyslexia.

As well as learning a trade by working in a butcher’s shop, his early jobs included being a telegram delivery boy and a gravedigger.

“When you’re a working-class boy from Newtown, a knighthood is pretty special,” he said.

The Herald says Sir Peter’s passion for rugby league is matched perhaps only by his extensive charity work, “and officially he is being knighted for his services to business and philanthropy.”

Alf, of course, has made enormous contributions to business too, especially to the profits of the liquor trade.

As to philanthropy, he regularly buys poppies to wear on Anzac Day and often buys Lotto tickets, the proceeds of which go to good causes (but – like gongs – never to him, alas).

He can only suppose he has been disqualified from the Queen’s Birthday Honours today on the grounds he is sane and did not make a career of chopping up pigs and lambs.

2 Responses to Disqualified for being sane – is that why Alf’s name is absent from today’s list of new knights?

  1. adam2314 says:

    Surely The Mad butcher would be in the ranks of
    ” Hard working and long serving “..

    Mad yes.. But well deserved..

  2. Alf Grumble says:

    But Alf is hard-working, long-serving, astonishingly sane (as well as modest)and well deserving.

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