Drop the name Thrupiece into any polite conversation and you are likely to get one of two reactions: Ah the Culinary Bio-ethicist who invented the thrupiecediet and taught us all the value of fluff. Or: Isn't he the chap who disappeared from a Swiss hotel room after an incident with a hand held electrical appliance whilst attending the annual Edna Awards in Geneva? [An intellectualised variant on the latter response, common in Alma Mater College circles, might include the extra detail that the Professor was due to give the College's Annual Association Lecture and that the contents of that never-given address will sadly remain forever a matter of conjecture.]
Thus is the great man - scholar, scientist, inventor, diplomat, astronaut, painter, author, photographer, architect, sportsman, humanitarian and all-Dorset horizontal jogging champion - remembered. The much-visited commemorative plaque in the foyer of the RCBE says as much. Memory may mislead, but engraved memorials do not lie. [pace James "Jimmie" Saville-Rowe [Ed].]
That the life of a great man - and its continuing story if rumours of the Professor's occasional sighting are to be believed - should be thus reduced to a few bare facts seems the epitome of historical cruelty - that inevitable filtering process whereby a whole category of manifold achievement as well as a rich complexity of manifest character is reduced to a single footnote on the page of life. Sic transit Gloria [It was the same in the case of Gloria] - or perhaps worse since no-one now knows to which Gloria this refers [Hunniford? [Ed].]
Thus reflected, it is easy - not least during the many depredations of self-isolated, state police-enforced, fear-ridden house arrest - to feel a certain lowering of the spirits and to succumb to the common but surely misguided conclusion that life itself is futile; that a man's achievements [careful [Ed]] are as nothing in themselves and certainly hardly worth recording for posterity; that the human project is over, that life, love and art are passing vanities and that the price of Lobster Thermidor in a good restaurant will never fall within the common reach. Easy indeed; normal certainly, but healthy? Possibly not.
It is an odd fact that just when life looks to be at its gloomiest. hope sneaks through the bio-hazard-secure keyhole in an unusual and unexpected form - often surprising, sometimes coincidental and occasionally simply astonishing; and such was the case today when an envelope arrived at the professorthrupiece.com virtual reception desk containing a manuscript recipe for Economy Lobster Thermidor in what has been authenticated as Professor Thrupiece's hand. This was, we know, a project to which he devoted a good deal of attention in the early 1960s. It is very clear from the Diaries [Vol MXLVIII Early and Sometimes Futile Experiments in Culinary Downscaling [March 1961- June 1961- edited with annotations by Mrs Amanda J Threadbone [Threadbone Press ] that the Professor - ever alert to the condition of the Dorset working classes - was much preoccupied with providing quality culinary experiences to those who could least afford them. Eventually it was his transformative harnessing of the potential of domestically-harvested fluff that would deliver this holy grail of culinary bioethical science, but prior to that breakthrough [full elaboration of the Thrupiece Tables was crucial] finding cheap substitute ingredients was key. Here was one such attempt - a veritable "missing link" in the chain of incremental discovery.
And so it is with great pleasure that we share - at this very difficult time - a positive ray of nutritional sunshine. This extraordinary conjunction - of a deeply-felt public craving for succour at a time of national crisis and remembrance of the generous legacy of a great man - is surely proof [and boy was it needed] that just like James "Jimmie" Saville-Rowe - God moves in deeply mysterious but [unlike James "Jimmie" Saville-Rowe] marvellously providential ways.