A very long time back, I was selected, (selected that is on the basis of, “who sits there, does that!) to take part in our Grammar School Nativity Play. Now the play itself was quite a big deal in our school, and every year a single theme was chosen, and although the basics, such as Mary, Joseph, Baby etc. remained as constants, the supporting cast altered according to the master who authored that year’s script!So there I was, all togged out in a very ‘natty’ Roman Centurion’s cloak, uniform etc. including a sword which was just a little bit too long for me, as I was only four foot ten tall when I was fifteen! (Late bloomer or something!) My part, which was of course crucial to the plot, was to send a soldier to demand a room at the inn, and to express annoyance at the very idea of a Roman Centurion being turned away from a warm fire etc.!
So the soldier returns with the bad news that all the rooms are full, and my line was to step forward while saying, “This is the last straw!” Which would normally have worked except that my sword, which I previously mentioned was rather long, caught some hay as I swept it forwards, so that this big clump of hay landed about four feet in front of me after what I do admit was a rather deft curving motion through the air! Of course this particular piece of theatre brought the house down, much to the displeasure of our headmaster, who got up, halted the play and ranted on for about three minutes about the sanctity of the play, and how we weren’t supposed to laugh at a Nativity Play, and on, and on, and on!
The ONLY person to get off ‘scott free’ was me, as I was deemed innocent! Happy days indeed!