Works in the Herald 1935

It has been revealed that the Sales Tax authorities employ an official cake-eater whose duty it is to distinguish between biscuits, which are taxable, and shortbread, which is not. The practice suggests infinite bureaucratic possibilities.

Walk up!  Walk up to the Bureaucratic Fair!
All the tasters and the testers and the tallymen are there.
   All the freaks and other fancies of the mighty tax machine.
   A unique congomeration not believed until it's seen.
Walk up!  Walk up to the strangest show on earth!
And learn how the tax-collection costs near all a tax is worth;
   Learn all about the latest departmental funny cracks.
   Buy your tickets at the window.  Two and six -- plus tax.

Come and see the biscuit-biter.  No performance could be brighter.
   Learn how shortbread can affect the human girth.
Come and see the pastry chewer.  Green complexioned, but a doer --
   Holds the cup for the most bilious bloke on earth!
Come and see the lip-stick licker.  Quick as lightning -- even quicker --
   Picks the British from the foreign at a lick.
Come and help the politician patch the country's sad condition.
   With the latest catch-a-penny parlor trick.

Come and see the cove so pure that he bans the literature
   That all Britain may devour, and stays serene.
Watch his calories increase as he scans a spicy piece,
   While he gradually turns a sickly green.
Good, clean fun, but vastly funny.  Every act is worth the money!
   Every turn is full of merry harmless fun.
Come and see the dope-detectors, see unhappy sweet-inspectors
   Testing chocolates for gin -- and finding none!

Walk up!  Walkup to the Bureaucratic Fair!
All the latest acquisitions of the Government are there;
   All the testers and the tasters, all the poor dyspeptic blokes,
   And so very, very earnest, tho' the public throw them jkes.
Walk up and see the show arranged especially for you,
And help the harried Government to earn more revenue --
   That stuff they spend so freely and the population lacks
   Buy your tickets at the window -- Two and sixpence -- plus tax.

Herald, 2 December 1935, p8

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2004-07