How it was born
an Article from the Sporting Times August 7th 1926.
In clubs, messes, hostelries of all descriptions, barrack rooms and many other places where two or three Bohemian and charitably inclined do congregate, the stunt of the moment is Ye Ancient Order of Froth Blowers.
The story is the inception of the A.O.F.B. as it is known to it's ever increasing band of adherents, is interesting in the extreme.
About eighteen months ago an eminent and world honoured surgeon placed his hand affectionately on the shoulder of a middle aged man. This man, with face lined by the ravages of the big war, with the worship of Bacchus and the neglect of Morpheus, gazed intently at the surgeons boots.
"Bert my boy, " said the surgeon, " you have been a bad lad; you have always taken the best out of life and put nothing back. In future try and bring some sunshine into the lives of others. Your own life has been saved by the skill which has been granted to me, and I want you to help me saves the lives of others. My 'wee waifs' in the East End of London can be helped by you and your cheery but thoughtless companions."
The man with the corrugated face left the surgeons house in Portland Place, and the "Ancient Order of Froth Blowers" was born the following day.
The M.W.T.C.F. now broadcasts the story of the growth of the now famous Order:-- About one hundred Blowers' cards (booklets came later) with the Silver Cufflinks, were issued, and these were instantly bought up by ex-members of the founders regiment -- the 1st Sportsmans' Battn. A further five hundred followed, some of which found their way to Southsea and instantly the Ancient Order started growing in a wonderful manner.
The Navy, Army, Air Force and Volunteers held a successful dinner in Southsea, and from the moment of that gathering His Majesty's Forces have spread the Arts and Crafts of Froth Blowing right around the world.
From Thibet, St. Lucia, the Soudan, Accra, Columbo, Malta (very hot) came applications for Froth Blowing permits, but when the Grand Typhoon (Mr. Jack Haes) sang the Blower's anthem in the London Stock Exchange the success of the Ancient Order as a charitable guild was trebly assured.
By the end of this month a thousand pounds will have been entrusted to the "Wee Waifs" Fund. This fund is entirely at the disposal of Sir Alfred and Lady Fripp, every penny being carefully expended at their discretion.
The profit on each member's subscription is small, for the neatly designed solid silver cuff links bearing the initials A.O.F.B. in blue enamel are provided, together with an amusing and expensive book containing the Ritual of the Craft. The founder has endeavoured to give full value for the five shillings, and the result proves that this new style of appeal is exceptionally popular.
There are tens of thousands of cheerful, charitable but careless good lads ready to dip their hands into their pockets if they are only approached in a cheery way. Sob stuff leaves them uninterested. as Pussyfoot Johnson generally goes hand-in-hand with the mournful collector. The wee lassies of the Salvation Army don't make a dive for the lime-juice establishments. No, they burst into the nearest bar, knowing that the boxes will have some rattle when they approach their quarter-bloke.
Friends of the Froth Blowers March 2006
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