Oddfellows

Once upon a time there was a little white bull

Very sad, because he was a little white bull
All the black bulls called him a coward
Just ’cause he was white
Only black bulls go to the bullring
Only black bulls fight

Yesterday I visited ‘The Oddfellows Arms’. Habit. It was closed.

300 years ago the trade guilds supported many workers; ‘Oddfellows’ supported smaller groups of tradesmen who didn’t fit in elsewhere.

Last night at 8.00 the nation applauded. I played ‘You’ Never Walk Alone’ on my accordion. Family and friends have often mocked – made me feel different – because of my accordion. Perhaps it’s the way I play it!

But this did not satisfy that little white bull
He was an exception to that little white rule
Everyday alone in the meadow, he’d find things to charge
Till one day he really imagined, that his horns were large

Daniel is deaf. To us outside the deaf community he is different. Our friend writes:

‘Being different means embracing your identity, language and culture and wearing it as a badge of honour. It means being stronger than the barriers, exclusion and misunderstanding that are part of everyday life and proving your worth in a world that measures you by your difference.’

Jesus declared that his mission was:

    ‘…to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free…’

… oddfellows who don’t fit in

‘The matador cried, torro little bull!
You’re not a little bull, you’re a brave little bull
You’re gonna be a great little bull
The best in Spain!’

His bovine community, the public, even the expert matador misjudged him as an oddfellow.

They had to change their mind.

Ref:

As a child I remember Tommy Steele singing ‘The Little White Bull’

Written by Lionel Bart, Michael Pratt & Jimmy Bennett it was from the film “Tommy The Toreador” (1959)

‘Oddfellows’ have existed for hundreds of years. Some would trace them back to Jewish prisoners in exile in Babylon in 87 BC and Jewish prisoners in Rome in 70 AD – a brotherhood who banded together for mutual support. They are well documented in the early 18th century as providing social and financial security to small groups of tradesmen. In some parts of the country they still exist today to promote ‘better people, better society and better values’.

Daniel says:

  • I am a fourteen years old Deaf boy who is currently campaigning for a GCSE in British Sign Language (BSL).
  • I was born Deaf without any cochleae (meaning I am profoundly Deaf and proud).
  • I am the only Deaf person in my family (it is annoying sometimes!)
  • I have an awesome Hearing Dog named Varley (a black Labrador)!

One thought on “Oddfellows

  1. I love your accordion playing! I was wondering the other day if I could ask you to play at the wedding? It will be at Carlton Colville church in December; lots of foliage and candles! After dark. Xxx

    Like

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