There was a night, some years back, when the Legion was quiet on Saturdays. The same half-dozen people would show up every week and, if anyone else walked in, they would get a look. It was half-suspicion, half-confused irritation.
They don’t really use people’s surnames. They speak in shorthand. And everyone remembers the vicar who goosed the shop lady on Christmas Eve. Even those of us who were still in Croydon at the time.
Anyway, one night, there was talk of cheese. I think it started with a discussion about cheese dreams and whether it was hard or soft cheese that scrambled the sleeping mind.
Suddenly, Keef asked if anyone in the room had ever tried stinking bishop.
It wasn’t just the drink that robbed us of our thoughts. None of us had ever heard of stinking bishop and we might have gone through the rest of our lives having never tried it, but then, Keef explained it was “a hold your nose job”.
The following weekend, he brought a handful of crackers and a lump of cheese. I won’t try and describe the smell. The clue is in the title. But, if you can prevent yourself from breathing in until the cracker is actually in your mouth, it is incredible. Rich, strong, punchy. If you like a strong cheese, stinking bishop is amazing.
It’s probably best around people with whom you have some sort of conversational shorthand. No one really wants to take a deep breath to say anything when there’s stinking bishop in the room.