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Mrs Smith

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My father was a carpenter in Glasgow mostly making wooden templates for the Clyde shipbuilding industry. At one time he used to employ a local woman in his workshop who everyone only referred to as "Mrs. Smith". She, in turn, only ever referred to my father as "Boss". I remember her from around 1950 when she was already an old woman in her 70's. I recall her sitting on an old three-legged stool in the corner of the workshop dressed in a long black cape and drawing on a clay pipe - they must have been popular when she was young and she continued to use them. "Will you open the furnace door Mrs. Smith ?" said my father "I want to stoke the boiler". "Yes boss" she replied.

That is my memory, maybe my earliest one. It is many many years ago. I miss them both.

Maybe that is the source of a vague feeling I have that to see a woman smoking a pipe carries a vague erotic charge, though Lord knows that Mrs. Smith's Harris tweed undergarments would dispel all such thoughts in practice. To test this theory I have recently had the current Mrs. Woodley thoughtfuly toy with the old briar, but no business resulted.

Has anyone out there got any more "spicy" tales to tell of the conjunction between female lip and lucite stem, I wonder ?

Many Thanks,

Ted Woodley.

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Many Thanks, Ted Woodley