P&J Column 12.7.18

Looks like we’re all resigned to chaos…

Struan Metcalfe, Conservative MP for Aberdeenshire North and surrounding Nether Regions

Sometimes one’s principles are pushed to the limit. There comes a point when one must pin one’s colours to the mast and make a decision that’s so tumultuous, so life changing, one’s botty twitches more than the vein in John Bercow’s forehead. For all of us at Westminster, this has been such a time, and I must now speak out, as my own conscience dictates. My friends, I’ve been supporting England in the World Cup.

I am a proud Scotch (I return to my family seat at Strathbogie at least once every two years) – but I am a man of principle. And principally I have found that if you want to have a snifter or seven anywhere in London at the mo, you better be ready to shout “Up the Engerland’ along with the oiks. And so It was that I found myself last night singing a version of Atomic Kitten’s ‘Whole Again’ whilst being cradled in the arms of a bald and tattooed stranger on the Old Kent Road. ‘Is this’, I wondered , ‘what I want for our nation’s future?’

It was in in that moment that I realised it was time to pick a side in the whole Brexit hullaballoo – and, in that delicate condition my decision was to come out in favour of the Three Brexiteers (D.D., BoJo and the other chap nobody had heard of and who’s name you already can’t remember). So, as the traffic cones whizzed past my head, I did what any true political animal of the 21st Century would do, I tweeted.

@Number10, Please pass this resignation letter to ‘She Who Must Be Dis-May-ed’. (Sorry Theresa, I don’t have your handle to attach you. Hopefully Mickey G will print it out and leave it on your desk for me.) @thegovemeister

Dear P.M. I fully expect the repercussions to be terrible and the fall out devastating, but my dream of political greatness is dying. So, like the former Foreign Secretary, I have no option but to resign. I cannot support the Chequers fudge (also – spoilers – I am pretty sure Boris is mounting a coup against you and I want to be riding his Eton College coat-tails when he does!)” #brexit #ratssinkingship

in reply to @struanmetcalfe

@struanmetcalfe, I don’t think the Prime Minister will be able to accept your resignation, because you aren’t in the Cabinet. You’re a backbencher, you absolute wazzock. And I won’t be printing off your tweet. Famously, I can’t work a room, what makes you think I can work the printer?”

J Fergus Lamont, art critic and author of ‘Sunday Chuddy Sunday – A History of Union Street Deep-Cleaning”

You will of course be aware that the 10th July was National ‘Don’t Step On A Bee Day – a day to increase awareness of the humble bumble bee and not, as I originally thought, a festival of destruction  involving the sanitary-ware in which one washes one’s derrière. Even more excitingly, today is National Simplicity Day, held in honour of that great advocate Henry David Thoreau;  a chance for those us in the busy modern world to abandon our mobile phones, laptops and other modern gadgets, and experience true peace, quiet and contentment.  Separating oneself from the lure of screen based devices can be difficult, but as fate would have it, I managed to achieve something of the technology-free conditions required by inadvertently flinging my iPhone into the washing machine at the weekend with a full load.

So liberated, while wandering the sunny streets, I stumbled upon a stunning new artistic edifice.  If you are feeling bereft at the continued delay in the reopening of the Music Hall or the Art Gallery, then get ye to Mannofield, where can be found an installation in striking monochrome bearing the intriguing name “Oor Wullie’s Braw Fish & Chips”. It comprises a brutalist structure intricately decorated in pictograms that tell an epic tale in demotic Scots. It is something akin to the Bayeux Tapestry. Though rather than depicting the Norman Invasion, the Battle of Hastings and King Harold with an arrow in his eye, it features Wee Eck, Fat Bob and a boy in dungarees sitting on a bucket. I understand that the pictograms are Dundonian in origin, so having them on display here in Aberdeen is one in the eye for the V&A! I attempted to push through crowd to discuss the piece more fully with the white-coated curator behind the stainless steel counter, when a stray squirt of vinegar landed in my eye.

I wept.