Wednesday, January 18, 2006

It's National Gordon Day

Gordon Brown, Tony Blair's brooding sidekick and Prime Minister-in-waiting wants us to have a special "British Day" to celebrate "British history, achievements and culture".

Now I'm not one to whinge about how terrible our history was, despite our monumental achievements in building the trans-Atlantic slave trade and fighting wars with almost everybody, but there are a couple of problems with British Day. One is our innate distrust of shows of patriotism. Hanging flags in your garden, singing national anthems and having communal neighbourhood hug-ins all sounds suspiciously foreign to me.

And the other problem is that we have so many days to choose from.

13 March - Hooliganism Day

With their plastic pitch, ban on away supporters, all-seater stadium and rent-a-gobshite-quote Tory Chairman, Luton Town in the eighties came to epitomise the ruling order in a way unmatched by any other reactionary, right wing figure except Thatch herself. So it was with genuinely mixed feelings that we watched the match against Millwall in 1985 when their ground was demolished by a riotous mob of psychopathic South Londoners.

How do we celebrate it?

Villagers assemble on the green, half dressed like Harry Enfield's character Loadamoney and half as baton-wielding Bedfordshire rozzers. They chase each other around a bit in a flurry of flying plastic seats.

21 May - World Unity Day

In 2003 Britain's position in the world sank to a justified new low as tuneless Scouse duo Jemini were given a total of zero points in the Eurovision Song Contest. Jemini's song Cry baby was flat enough to damage ceiling fixtures and performed with the seductiveness and sensuality of a prisoner being strapped into an electric chair.

How do we celebrate it?

With a singing contest in the local Miners' Welfare Club. Local schoolchildren compete to gain nul points in front of a group of handpicked Latvians making Simon Cowellesque judgements. The winner is the youth who can produce the worst rendition of Cry Baby and get through

Cry, cry, baby
You lied to me, baby
I'll survive without you, baby
Baby, bye, baby, bye-bye

without suffering an existential crisis brought on by a surfeit of banality.

31 August - Mawkish Sentimentality Day

To commemorate the sloaney life and works of injudicious speedster and seatbelt-refusenik Diana Spencer, who departed this world in a storm of whirling cameras, hysterical tributes and nonsensical hyperbole such as "Diana's death has upset me more than my own father's did".

How do we celebrate it?

By covering town squares in expensive bouquets nicked from the local branch of Interflora, pointlessly signing books of condolence, publicly cursing Charles Windsor in Westminster Abbey and spouting nonsensical hyperbole such as "even though we never met, I felt like she was my friend".

22 September - Furore Day

This could actually be any day of the year, as we celebrate our sporadic ability to whip up a mob mentality on almost any subject. This juggernaut of self-righteousness can bring down a lynch mob on the guilty or innocent alike, leaving a dazed trail of coke-snorting supermodels, braindead footballers, Education Ministers, whoring television presenters and the Beastie Boys.

How do we celebrate it?

By eliminating entire species of dangerous dogs and whistling up a mob in Newport to attack a paediatrician on the grounds that it sounds a bit like "paedophile". And by organising puppet shows featuring our Shit-Stirrer-in-Chief, spouse-battering Sun editor Rebekah Wade who symbolically truncheons her husband, TV hard man Ross "Cut it aht, you slag" Kemp, into unconsciousness.

1 December - Sneering Day

We may not make movies or cars anymore, but Britain still leads the world in our ability to sneer. That one-two combination of twitching upper lip and pitiless gaze can only be mastered after years of study in the British state school system. On this day, we remember in 1976 when the Sex Pistols were suckered into saying "fuck" on daytime television by a sleazy looking interviewer called Bill Grundy.

How do we celebrate it?

In silent contemplation, as we wonder whether calling someone a fucking rotter is cool or a bit rubbish.


Blogger Marionette said...

Do I detect a touch of cynicism today?

It may be embarassing at times to be British, but you can always console yourself with the knowledge that at least you're not American.

5:18 pm  
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