THE HISTORY OF POSTAL PRANKS AND MISCHIEF 

Who hasn't at some time in their life received a flip flop through the mail? I know I have. But then I did spend a year posting the strangest things I could think of to various friends around the world. My inspiration however was not Warhol's pal Ray Johnson, who some claim to be the godfather of 'mail art', but a Victorian prankster called Reginald Bray. Over his lifetime Bray sent over 30,000 singular objects through the mail, including a cigarette, turnips, a bowler hat, his dog and himself. He even tested the wit of the humble postie by sending postcards with backward hand-writing and cryptic clues for uncovering the recipient's address. This talk is a celebration of Bray as the real godfather of postal mischief and how he inspired me to follow in his footsteps. Without this I'd have never experienced the delight in seeing the postman's face one morning handing me a set of false teeth with the stamps stuck on the gums.


This talk has been given at the Postal Museum and Archive, Sunday Assembly, Wilderness Festival, WI Eastbourne,  Port Eliot festival, Joanna Neary's Comedy Night, Angel Comedy Islington, Last Tuesday Society, Hendricks Carnival of Knowledge. Secret Garden Party,