Random musings from the front line (well, more like the support trench, or perhaps the castle 10 miles away, supping Chateau Lafite with the General Staff) in the battle for curiosity, inertia, grammar and a Dachshund called Colin.

Monday, August 15, 2005

The Honourable Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson MP

This season's hottest fashion itemWhat is it about that media darling and all-round randy magazine proprietor, Boris Johnson MP? A seemingly charming chap who would have been my MP had I stayed in the rather poncy village of my upbringing (blast those property prices), he is somewhat of a phenomenon in the grey faceless world of modern politics, being simultaneously witty, urbane, scruffy and (most importantly) interesting. While popping into a branch of Morrisons last week (for the first and last time, I must point out) I actually saw a middle-aged portly chap wearing some ill-advised tight shorts, a pair of flip-flops, and a ... "Boris" tee-shirt, complete with a cartoon caricature of the ex-Shadow Minister for the Arts. I was gobsmacked, and for a change it was not in a literal sense by the group of feral youths hanging around the car park looking for abandoned £1-laden shopping trolleys. What other MP (especially a Conservative & Unionist MP) could inspire someone, especially someone so obviously familiar with the lower rungs of the socio-economic ladder, to wear a fanclub-type garment? So I decided to do some intensive (ie Google) research and soon found that should one wish to emulate my rotund shopper, one can easily buy the tee-shirt from TeeMarto, here! But there's more....

Don't get me started on the One Way system around Falaise SquarePeople do seem slightly obsessed with young "Bozza". He has his own "Boris Watch" website, which I can't decide whether is a sign of celebrity or the function of a slightly obsessed mind. He is regularily the subject of gossip columns, satirical TV and radio shows, Private Eye articles/cartoons and he's one of the few Conservatives about whom even rabid lefties chuckle about and talk approvingly. The BBC News website wrote this very affectionate article about him on his recent 40th birthday (a rare occurrence for any MP, let alone a Tory), and is one of the few politicians of any hue (save "Shagger" Norris) who has easily shrugged off a sex scandal with no damage to his reputation.

New from the World of Colour Supplement Porcelain! The Limited Edition BJ Collectors PlateWe already know that Boris has his own official website-cum-blog that appears to be run by the slightly predictably-monikered "Melissa" and "Simon", and the less conventionally-named "Olly Researcher" (a very appropriate surname, young Olly). On which we can find the MP's rather well-argued and well-written thoughts on hot topics of the day, recent news stories and (occasionally) random subjects. What I like about the site is the opportunity to post comments thereon, in a 21st century equivalent of a permanent village hall meeting. A sort of "cyber-hustings", if you will. As well as the normal reactionary drivel from bearded vegetarians, and the insightful contributions of the rather marvellous Vicus Scurra, quite a lot of reasoned discussion goes on here, which occasionally spills over on to other blogs. In fact on one blog, only last week, the as-yet-unnamed humble "@" symbol was renamed in honour of the media-watching contribution of the mellifluous Melissa, and henceforth people will be describing their email addresses as "joedotbloggsmelissahotmaildotcom". It is written.

But I digress. Many years ago, whilst walking through St James' Park with a politically-minded friend, I caught my only 'in the flesh' glimpse of the then newly-elected MP for Henley-on-Thames, and my companion said:

"There goes the next Conservative Prime Minister".
"Hang on", I interjected, "It's 1998. He's only just turned up. What about Hague?" (I'm not a Tory. Just an argumentative sod).
"Just you wait and see. The Tories are done for, for at least 10 years. He's the only one of the lot of them with a personality".

And do you know what? I think he might be right.

[Thank you to Bill Mundy RMS for the Boris Portrait]

8 Rants & Replies:

Blogger Wyndham said...

I'm a fan of Boris, but rather disconcertingly my little boy Dexter is his spitting-image at the moment. Hmm, hair-cut time, me's thinking.

Ta muchly for the link!

7:08 am, August 17, 2005

Blogger garfer said...

Boris doesn't take himself seriously enough to be PM. He's making too much money and enjoys shagging his bits on the side to get involved in that kind of caper.

6:42 pm, August 17, 2005

Blogger Herge Smith said...

He will be PM - when he wants to, and boy will that be a weird time.

9:51 pm, August 17, 2005

Blogger Merkin said...

But that's what we need - someone with a sense of humour, a big brain and a shagging track record second to none. Tabloids would love him, and vain 30something urban women would vote Tory again. Whether that's a good thing is a moot point, but I'm a little sick now of Gordon taking half my wage packet away for little real benefit... (oooh political!)

12:26 pm, August 20, 2005

Blogger Mark Gamon said...

errrr... you think the Tories WON'T take away half your wage packet?

(Ah, the young. So endearingly innocent...)

10:08 am, August 22, 2005

Blogger Merkin said...

No Mark, I said "I'm a little sick now of Gordon taking half my wage packet...". I'm fairly resigned to the fact that someone will, it's just Mr Brown's smug grin and wee Scottish grin as he reannounces another pointless way to spend my money. It REALLY gets my goat.

(Ah the old. So .. er .. cynical!)

4:09 pm, August 22, 2005

Blogger Mark Gamon said...

Oh. OK. Understand now. But it'd be a bit like that if Oliver Letwin were doing it. He'd get at the money in a different way, no doubt, but the grin would be just as smug. If not Scottish.

I'm not defending Gordon Brown, I'm really not. In fact I've just reminded myself I had a nightmare about him last night. I must be psycheprescient or something...

5:07 pm, August 22, 2005

Blogger patroclus said...

Much as I hope I never see the Tories in power again in my lifetime, I have to admit that if they do get in, I *would* like to see Boris as PM. At the very least he'd speak his own mind, misguided as it might be, in an original and amusing fashion, *and* he'd pepper it all with obscure Classical references, which would be nice.

Blatant blog-pimping plug: Boris fans can read about my own brush with the floppy blond-haired one here.

11:53 am, September 01, 2005


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