Oh strewth. Don't you just hate it when the flower-arrangers have a serious falling-out? Not the normal disagreement over what brand of oasis to use, and how to pronounce Gypsophila - no, a real, no-wire-barred, flower-stalks-in-the-eye, secateurs-at-dawn kind of flower-arranging feud.
This morning's Pouring-out of Beakers Olympic Special was a real alt.lit spectacular. We installed a curling rink down the middle of the Moot House and all tried to get the beakers as close as possible to the bulls-eye thing. It was meant to be a kind of metaphor of the struggle against sin - how, even when you think you're somewhere near hitting the mark, some fool puts in a fierce shot that knocks you flying, and then a bloke with a broom gets in the way and you all end up on the floor and there's blood on the ice. That kind of idea.
So Zelma said if we want a winter theme, we need some winter flowers - not those carnations and stuff that Moragh keeps buying from Tesco. So she chucked out Moragh's rather tasteful affair, and replaced them with snowdrops.
Snowdrops. Now, I'm not superstitious. But everybody knows that bringing snowdrops into into the house means death. So I asked Dora to do something about it. So she did. She threw the snowdrops out on the path - apparently you've got to jump up and down on them, to crush the bad out - and replaces them with something genuinely wintry - early daffs.
But Moragh objected to the daffs. Too spring-like. Said if we were going for a Winter Olympics theme we needed something a bit more Alpine. Threw the daffs out, put in evergreen sprigs.
Zelma then complained that evergreens are only for Yule, replaces thed with bare sticks and dogwood branches, to celebrate the bleakness of the season.
Dora said if Zelma wanted bleakness, she should have proper bleakness. I don't know where she got the flamethrower from, but it's true enough. A bunch of smouldering sticks in dirty water with the glaze cracking on the vase was bleak as you like.
Still, I've had to ban all flowers and flower-arrangers from the Moot House now. As long as they were just throwing out each other's arrangements, that wasn't so bad. But when Dora slid Zelma down the curling rink, that was just too much. Especially when Moragh then used another "stone" to knock her out the circle.
Flower arrangements are pretty things. They bring a certain art, and reflection of the changing seasons, to an act of worship. But there's gotta be safer ways.