Black Rod (no don’t giggle)

The Lord Privy Seal

The Lord Privy Seal

Black Rod is one of the more unusual job titles available in the public sector, alongside Anti-social Behaviour Co-ordinator and Lord Privy Seal (see picture), but he had his outing of the year yesterday at the State Opening of Parliament.

A variety of little-known public assets were also used, including the Sword of State, the White Wand of Authority, the Cap of Maintenance and the Resurrection Stone (Is this right? -Ed.).

Her Maj arrived at Parliament in her brand new coach with an escort of dozens of horse-mounted soldiers – I dread to see her expenses claim – but Prince Philip got out first which is patriarchy of the worst order since she’s, erm, the Queen. Perhaps less emphasis on Royal Standards and more on Royal standards and privileges wouldn’t go amiss.

Huw Edwards' studio with no CGI background at all

Huw Edwards’ studio with no CGI background at all

On the BBC commentary, Huw Edwards explained, “This procession is only ever seen at the State Opening of Parliament and at Coronations.” You could almost hear Prince Charles’ hope. Her Maj, meanwhile, apparently faces “an extremely busy week: the State Opening today, and several garden parties later in the week.” Bless.

A reporter on the ground told excited viewers, “There you see Inspector Joe Kennels who is preparing to shout ‘Hats off, strangers!'” – I hope he gets Equity rates if he has to do preparation as well as just saying three simple English words on the day itself.

Jack Straw was also in the TV studio and, defending the archaic custom, said: “It’s not just pantomime.”

text2985

Not a Clegg to stand on

I'm sorry, I'm sorry (to have to show you this photo)

I’m sorry, I’m sorry (to have to show you this photo)

Following the Lib Dems’ better-than-expected performance in the European elections – which saw them lose all but one of their MEPs – there have been subversive mutterings in the party. Could Nick Clegg be on his way out? (Yes. -Ed.) Well, here’s the answer…

The Tories have their old man Dave
And Labour have their Ed
The Greens have only one MP
And she is not their head.
Sinn Féin’s just there to be a pain
And their leader’s out on bail
But the Lib Dems fear that they must change gear
‘Cos their leader has gone stale!
6-5-4-3-2-1 (that’s all our MEPs)

The old Lib Dems, the old Lib Dems,
They’ll never ever vote for our dear old Lib Dems
They’ll disagree with Nick and they’ll sneer at them
But they’ll never ever vote for the old Lib Dems!

M’Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay
Is plotting to to convince
The party members to select
A new leader called Vince!
But still a tiny voice is heard
Just going round to beg
That the party sticks with him as boss:
Yeah right, we’ll do that, Clegg!

3-2-1-OUT!

The old Lib Dems, the old Lib Dems,
They’ll never ever vote for our dear old Lib Dems
They’ll disagree with Nick and they’ll sneer at them
But they’ll never ever vote for the old Lib Dems!

Though Clegg can say it’s not his fault
And blame it on his wife
I think the polling shows him
That he’s fighting for his life.
‘Cos two percent of Parliament
Is not enough to rule (HEY!)
So what can we do but say adieu
And get rid of that fool!

[recitative]

The old Lib Dems, the old Lib Dems,
They’ll never ever vote for our dear old Lib Dems
They’ll disagree with Nick and they’ll sneer at them
But they’ll never ever vote for our dear old Lib Dems!

syria ballot paperUpdate from the Empire

No, this time it’s not Sir George. But I was interested this week to read the following inexplicable headline in the New Indian Express:

mk-promisesThe first sentence of the article reveals that the word ‘jam’ should have been outside the quotation marks, but little else: “Festivities to celebrate DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi’s birthday caused quite a traffic obstruction on Anna Salai on Tuesday.”

Gosh, was it quite a traffic obstruction? Apparently so, because “professionals waited impatiently in auto-rickshaws.” (Sounds just like Lewes Road on a Monday morning.) The report went on: “While for DMK members the Anna Salai stretch towards Teynampet was thick with a festival-like atmosphere, for members of the public it was an absolute nightmare.”

An absolute nightmare! Blimey! This journalist ought to get a job with the Brighton Argus

katy bourne deeply disturbedFive of the best

This is all to your credit
In tonight’s episode, the song was written and performed by Nick van Nycke. Her Mirrensty was played by the Queen. Deeply disturbed Katy was played by herself, with contributions from the rest of her ensemble. And the Lord Privy Seal was actually portrayed by a walrus but don’t tell. This was an Gabrielquotes production!

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