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Tanks For The Memory


This week's Egyptian Time Magazine. The "cult" of Two Tanks Hamoon is gathering pace.

A Seaborough-based Egyptian tropical fish breeder was said to have "taken it to the next level" today after installing an additional aquarium in his hitherto traditional and small-scale craft piscine breeding unit. The entrepreneur in question, 28-year-old Abdul "Two Tanks" Hamoon - who also has a fish and bric-a-brac stall on Nettlecombe‘s Tuesday Market - has left others - including his older but less capitalised brother One Tank Hamoon - "wrong-footed and in complete shock", according to a family friend Upan Aten. "We knew he was up to something when he ordered several sheets of plexiglass and some angled brackets. But not this. There were lots of banging noises in the night, but since he has only recently remarried, we thought nothing of it. We certainly never imagined he would be so underhand as to go industrial. I mean it's what the Germans call Der Übergang vom Feudalismus zum Kapitalismus or the transition from gemeinschaft to gesellshaft. It's a game changer". Mr Aten was not educated in the UK and so has a good grasp of both languages and economics.


Officially, the Seaborough Egyptian community is "delighted" and has nothing but praise for Mr Hamoon's enterprise. "It's a tipping point. Nothing in the fish breeding game will ever be the same again", says Winterbourne Steepleton's Egyptian attaché Nasser Space-Agency. "We are so proud of him - back in Egypt he is already a national hero and has featured heavily in the Dorset news section of this week's Egyptian Time Magazine. There are strong rumours he is is in the running to be its Man of the Year and has even been booked for Egypt's Got Talent ".


But back home amongst Mr Hamoon's friends and relatives, things are not looking quite so rosy. Various members of Mr Hamoon's extended family - doubtless motivated by envy and a shortage of powdered tubifex worms, mosquito larvae, bloodworms, water fleas and brine shrimp - are accusing him of everything from craft-scale espionage, through unbecoming self-aggrandisement to illegal business practice. The latter "charge" hangs on the allegation that he has tried to set up a dodgy franchise along the lines generally known as "pyramid selling". Mr Hamoon is incensed, strongly denies the charge and resents the accusation. "I have never tried to sell a pyramid in my life", he says, "they are far too big for me to handle and also highly specialised. I haven't got anything near enough room on the stall or staff to shift stuff like that - they don't come flat-pack and take years to reassemble. Who do they think I am? Cheops?" [Surely IKEA? [Ed].]

Mr Hamoon's bric-a-brac and tropical fish stall on Nettlecombe‘s Tuesday Market. Evidence of his huge forward investment is apparent in the two state-of-the-art aquaria.

Dorset Book of the Dead. [First folio] Image reproduced by permission of the Dorset Museum of Archeology and Anthropology.

Others suspect Mr Hamood of harbouring even greater ambitions. There is a widely circulating rumour that he is trying to initiate a personal cult by seeking to emulate the feats of a legendary long-distant ancestor - the pharaonic period demi-god Ten Tank’Amun - who according to the Dorset Book of the Dead "ruled all of the lands as far as the eye could see and had four wives unto him and many sons - even ten - and many artificially heated and aerated fish tanks numbering one for each of them." By coincidence, part of a papyrus panel depicting Ten Tank’Amun with two of his signature tanks is displayed in the Egyptian Cabinet, housed in the Threadbone Room in the Dorset Museum of Archeology and Anthropology. Enemies of enterprise in general and Mr Two Tanks Hamoon, in particular, will take comfort from the cautionary aspects of Ten Tank’Amun's tale. The industrial complex he built on the west bank of the Nile at El-Amarna was destroyed by an uprising in about 1294BC, followed by a desert storm shortly after. No fish survived it.


Part of a papyrus panel depicting Ten Tank’Amun with two of his signature tanks is displayed in the Egyptian Cabinet, housed in the Threadbone Room in the Dorset Museum of Archeology and Anthropology. [Reproduced with permission]

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