"and if you've read Ally Sloper's I'll leave you to work out why"
Ally Sloper's Half Holiday
Public DomainAlly Sloper's Half Holiday
Alexander Sloper, or Ally Sloper*, was a comic strip character who first appeared in the British magazine Judy (a rival of Punch) in 1867.

From 1884 to 1916 a whole comic, known as Ally Sloper's Half Holiday, was devoted to the character. While the comic ran, Ally Sloper merchandise such as ashtrays and pocket watches could be purchased. In 1886 he also became the subject of a popular song, Ally Sloper's Christmas Holiday.

Ally Sloper (who was depicted as a drunken, lecherous layabout) also had a fictional family, which included his showgirl daughter, Tootsie Sloper.

Tootsie also became the subject of a song entitled I'm mashed on Tootsie Sloper, written by Joseph. S. Long (1848-1904).

* alley sloper was slang for somone who would slip out the back door into an alley when the landlord called, in order to avoid paying the rent.