John McCullagh March 13, 2005
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In a long career of processing Business Start-Up applications, Sheila had never before handled one like this.  The client contended that he was proposing to serve a long-neglected and highly put-upon section of the community, the persistent drunkard.

 

He was applying for a grant to start a weekly magazine called the Modern Drunkard.

 

‘You only have to read the newspapers to learn that there is a huge and growing market out there for the chronically wasted and dissolute.  But how can they communicate with one another? 

 

They’ve had a bad press, but it’s unfair.  Did you know, for example, that some of the world’s best thinkers were also its best drinkers?

 

Why do you think Shakespeare’s Wives of Windsor were always so merry?

 

Did you know that the author was in the delirium tremens when he penned the first draft of The Silence of the Lambs?  That first draft was entitled ‘Shut up, ewes’.

 

Gone with the Wind was originally ‘Away with the Mixer’.

 

Ernest Hemmingway was on a long binge when he first wrote his classic, ‘A Farewell to Arms’.  It was provisionally called A Farewell to Legs.

 

Sadly Sheila remained unconvinced and he didn’t get his grant!

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