Well, ok, that's a bit of a lie (which he would have dis-approved of) but, he was really old and said really wise things, in a wizard sort of way. Granted, he never turned me into a frog but he did speak to Gothess and she's French *ponders awhile* so that's kind of wizardy. Anyway, I worshipped him, right up to the point where he fucked up on the immortality bit. Yup, he fucked up and got himself deaded.
Before he did the dead thing, he did loads of brilliant things like, oh I dunno, The Times Crossword in 30 seconds (and not by just colouring it in), shoved his hand up a cows arse on a regular basis (something to do with them having small cows), and smoked a pipe (HA, see - definitely a wizard then!!). He did loads of interesting things like, not getting killed by Germans in 1940, not getting killed by Japanese in 1944 and not getting killed by his wife for fucking off for 5 years to fight someone who he didn't want to.
I was angry that he insisted that I was not allowed in to see him in the hours before he went 'disco dancing in the clouds' as I had just risked my arse flying in a big metal tube from Spain to the UK. But, as usual, he had a wizardy reason for this - he didn't want me to see him wired and tripping. At the time, I was pissed off but in retrospect I understand - my image of the Wizard of Goth as a hero remains.
The Wizard of Goth would remain aloof, and at times distant, sitting in his armchair with his eyes closed but accutely aware of any conversations and commenting only when he saw fit - I assumed, at the time, casting spells but in reality, a deeply sad person for being put in such a position to have to fight and kill a fellow man. He did tell me once what happened, but......
The Wizard had an encyclopeadic knowledge, especially of the bible which was very entertaining when the god squad used to pay a visit. To see these parasites squirm as he corrected them on chapter and verse was so funny. After the leeches had left, suitably chastised, he would pull another tale from his history to entertain us.
I'm happy to say that I surprised him when I offered to take him and his beloved out for lunch. I already had my plan but couldn't say anything to spoil the surprise. Lunch was the bait, the Zoo was the surprise. When I got the Wizard and his wife there, they lost 40 years at least. "When was the last time you went to a zoo?" I asked, after I managed to interupt the "Tigers first", "No, Elephants", "Tigers", "Elephants". They stopped arguing and after consulting each other they blew my mind with the answer. "53 years ago"
The Wizard was also a stickler for standards and had a right pop at me when I entertained my teenage fuzzy days, trying to grow a moustache. "I managed to shave with a year old razor in the jungles of Burma every day so I don't see why you can't manage to when you're in your situation". Which message, obviously, flew right over my head as I was feeling suitably smug that the Wizard had called me a 'man'. I don't think I dissappointed him as, although never one for praise directly, as I found out at his funeral, the mourners seemed to know more about my life and achievements than I did. Apparently the Wizard had been at work. I can't say I was surprised in the slightest when Mrs Wizard followed to take her place in the sky less than 6 months later. I think they had been together for 64 years so to lose someone that close would kind of tip your balance I suppose - sort of like holding onto someone when you're pissed and then they disappear. TILT - hit the floor time.
So charge your glasses and raise a toast, to my sadly missed, "Wizard of Goth"
*smiles and winks at a star*