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Leary Man

from Best Before 2027 by Storm Bugs



Of ups and downs I've felt the shocks
Since days of bats and shuttlecocks,
And allcumpaine and Albert-rocks,
When I the world began;
And for these games I often sigh
Both marmoney and Spanish-fly,
And flying kites, too, in the sky,
For which I've often ran.

But by what I've seen, and where I've been,
I've always found it so,
That if you wish to learn to live
Too much you cannot know.
For you must now be wide-awake,
If a living you would make,
So I'll advise what course to take
To be a Leary Man.

Go first to costermongery,
To every fakement get a-fly,
And pick up all their slangery,
But let this be your plan;
Put up with no Kieboshery,
But look well after poshery,
And cut teetotal sloshery,
And get drunk when you can.

And when you go to spree about,
Let it always be your pride
To have a white tile on your nob
And bull-dog by your side
Your fogle you must flashly tie
Each word must patter flashery,
And hit cove's head to smashery,
To be a Leary Man.

To Covent Garden or Billingsgate
You of a morn must not be late,
But your donkey drive at a slashing rate,
And first be if you can.
From short pipe you must your bacca blow
And if your donkey will not go,
To lick him you must not be slow
But well his hide must tan.

The fakement conn'd by knowing rooks
Must be well known to you,
And if you come to fibbery,
You must mug one or two.
Then go to St Giles's rookery,
And live up some strange nookery,
Of no use domestic cookery,
To be a Leary Man.


from Best Before 2027, released February 13, 2023
Music: Sanderson and Ball, lyrics from The Vulgar Tongue by Ducange Anglicus, 1857.


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