10 November 2008

The Lord's Prayer

An unconventional armistice day post.

Update: Spike Milligan was arguably one of the most influential comedians of the 20th century. An accomplished musician, Milligan served during the Second World War as a gunner in a field artillery regiment of the British Army.

He served through North Africa, Sicily and Italy before succumbing to combat stress. Milligan was diagnosed later in life as having bipolar disorder.

Milligan was a relentless social and political commentator throughout his post-war life. He worked to make the world a better place, a fact not realized even by members of his own family until some of his letters were discovered after his death.

In this video, Milligan merely takes a stock British Army character or style, namely the sergeant major and imagines the Lord's Prayer as delivered in the verbal style of one of these parade square demi-gods. It may be an in joke but for those familiar with the senior non-commissioned officer of not so long agao, the effect is worth at least a giggle if not a few hearty guffaws.

Armistice Day is a time for sorrowful reflection. However, we would be remiss if we did not recall that the men and women who served were human. Milligan's life should remind us all of their humanity and ours.