“Excuse me for asking but is this the hairdressing establishment of Ted Sponge the pudding basin barber of Stepney?”

“Yes luv and I are none other than Ted Sponge – at your service madam. I’ve not seen you around these parts, are you new to the area?”

“Yes, this is my very first visit to the charming hamlet of Stepney. Anyway my name is Joan of Arc – perhaps you’ve heard of me…….it matters not. As I understand it you provide a pudding basin haircut service second to none?”

“How very true – in point of fact the ‘pudding basin’ is the only one I can do. Surely a lady of your obvious elegance does not want her Barnet fashioned in the ‘pudding basin’ style?  I mean Ethel just up the road does all the local girls. Does a cracking blue rinse and set.”

“No it is in my heart to have a ‘pudding basin’ for God spoke to me in my dreams and advised that if I and my army of brave hearted Frenchman all have our hair cut thus we will positively stuff the English in the forthcoming battle of Orleans.”

“Well it’s your call Joan – what basin would you like. Tell you what, seeing as how it’s you I’ll place my very finest Wedgewood porcelain piss pot upon you bonce. Can’t say fairer than that………right here we go.


 Any how’s Joan that’s heavy stuff what you were saying about the battle and all that though – it’s just that I can’t see how can such a hair style could give rise to a bunch of you Froggies putting one over on our boys – I mean I know it’s an away battle for us but even so!”

“Ah you do not understand Ted for God was clear in his message. You see as we engage in combat with the English scum they will take one look at us all with pudding basin’s and fall apart laughing to the extent they will be off guard and we shall put them all to the blade no less.”

“Slimey bastards – how cunning is that. Fancy a cup of tea luv?”

“Have you a cafe’?”

“Do what – I’m too busy running this place for all that malarkey but there’s one just off the High Street who does an all-day breakfast.”

“Pardon? Whatever – I suppose your Rosbifs have their usual boring haircuts; short back and sides devoid of any flair. My God you English have no fashion sense at all.”

“As it so happens Joan I’ve heard on the grapevine that my mate ‘Gerald the Tie Dye Mohican Barber of Whitechapel’ is doing theirs this season.”




  1. Bwaaa haaa haa! I’m glad you said she would defeat the enemy by causing them to let their guard down as they rolled on the ground laughing, because that’s exactly what I was thinking up to that point! I think that Jim Carrey and Dr. Spock also visit Ted’s barbershop. 😉 Wonderful story. If history were this interesting, I might have enjoyed it better in school! 😀

    1. Thank you for that! My brain is going to take a rest for a few days. Yet if you think I’m mad try the other bog I write for where Messrs Soz and Hoadley make me seem almost normal! Best of luck.

  2. Like the Carruthers posts, your sporadic takes on Joan of Arc add a new dimension to the story each and every time! Thanks for clearing up the mystery surrounding her silly haircut. I’m sure historians will embrace your work!

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