Friday, January 18, 2008
WEATHERFIELD GAZETTE DEATH NOTICES
On 18th January 2008, suddenly at home, Veronica (Vera) Duckworth, aged 69 years, of 9 Coronation St, Weatherfield. Beloved wife of Jack, mother of Terence. Also missed by grandchildren Paul, Tommy and Brad, second cousin once-removed HM The Queen and family, Tyrone and Molly. Also missed by friends and neighbours. Funeral Service to be announced later. No flowers.
WEATHERFIELD GAZETTE CLASSIFIEDS
Massage chair. One previous owner. Good for aches, pains. Other benefits included. May require a little rewiring depending on what happens tonight. Tel: 0161 715 8436
My formative years coincided with Vera's classic tight perm and nylon tabard phase of the 1980s, so inevitably during that time she became something of a second mother to me. Whether deciding on a tasteful façade for the home, dealing with wayward menfolk and their video dating tomfoolery, or overseeing the sale of grandchildren, Vera has been a constant source of inspiration. She even made stitching denim in a borderline-sweatshop seem fun. So in tribute I'll be spending Friday wearing a headscarf, clockwatching and gossiping non-stop. Vera, peace be with you on your journey to the Baldwin's Casuals factory in the sky and enjoy an eternity of nattering with Ivy.
Far be it from me to sully the good name of Veronica Duckworth by bringing petty crime into the equation, but my abiding memory of Vera will always be the time when, during a period of severe poverty, she attempted to steal some desperately-needed nappies from Bettabuys by hiding them in the bottom of little Tommy's pram. She was stopped before leaving the store by friend, neighbour and supermarket manager Curly Watts, who promptly found himself in trouble for not waiting until she had left the store and actually stolen the nappies, and instead accosting her at the checkout when all they could do was accuse her of intending to steal. An unpleasant story, perhaps, but I think it speaks volumes about the high esteem in which everyone held Vera, that people would be willing to jeopardise their jobs, their careers even, to protect her from coming to any harm. It's a shame no one could do anything to save her from whatever fate she is set to suffer tonight. May her soul rest in peace.
The Great Illumination sleeps
The best that Blackpool never had
In Weatherfield, the pigeons weep
For walls of blue and yellow clad
Her spirit lit up every scene
As denim-stitch or publican
As bastard cousin of the Queen
Or keeper of Roy's frying pan
O Vera! Hear the pigeons roar
The kettle hiss and barrel thunder
Ascending to God's factory floor
Of light and love and Northern wonder
These cobbled streets have lost a great 'un
But know this as your train departs:
Your kidney lives on in Paul Clayton
As you live on in all our hearts.
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So the massage chair is still in good working order. We're asking full price for it.