MP’s, pathetic middleclass children and alcoholic journalists can never decide if they love or loath this time of year. They get to escape Westminster and their horridly ugly constituents, they get to give speeches the sleeping, and the excess of sponsored parties where one and all approved attendee can drink themselves into oblivion. Paradoxically, however, the poor souls are also obliged to go to some of the most depressing parts of the country.
It truly is a very difficult decision to make because in addition to this Labour party members have to hide the fact they are ordered around by unions, the Liberal Democrats have to hide that they’re ordered around by the Conservative Party and the Tory’s have to avoid their everlasting obsession with Thatcher. To add to this dilemma they all have to appeal to the ‘common-man’ and avoid been photographed guzzling hilariously expensive Champaign and the consumption of Swan by the bevy.
Nevertheless most of them decided the free booze, swan and cheaper-than-London-ladies worth it and descended upon Brighton, Manchester and Birmingham!
The three week comedy festival began with the LibDem conference in Brighton and kicked off with Nick Clegg apologizing to the masses for his existence. However that was a quite risky performance, one which did not go down too well with the audience, surprisingly. Realising this, the LibDem comedy-department (aka. the LibDem’s) kick-started pleb-a-palooza with masses of pleb-puns, pleb-jokes and pleb-confession and pleb-merchandise, all with a hint of plebery. How original.
The sense of comradery achieved via use of Andrew Mitchell’s infamous gate-gate comments was outstanding. “I’m a pleb” declared former Shell economist Vince Cable; it’s unbelievable how the audience didn’t explode with laughter. A day later Danny Alexander, ever the sucker for originality, opened his speech with “fellow plebs” in the manor a Scientologist would greet its victims.
The second leg in the UK’s annual comedy festival was held in the Labour stronghold of sunny, sunny Manchester.
Concern was rife amongst attendees that pleb-a-palooza was just a LibDem phenomenon. It wasn’t. Merchandise, speeches, insanely rich union leaders confessing they were indeed fellow plebs, pleb-a-palooza entered fifth gear and the Great British institution of class war was reignited.
Unlike the LibDem’s conference the comedy highlight of the show was not any pleb related drama, not the memorised speech Miliband spat out, but the zingers deputy leader Harriet Harman had prepared for the lucky, lucky audience.
Speaking about her summer reading list, which is obviously of high importance to the country, she said, “I had an awkward moment when asked if I had ‘read that book’, women here will know the one … the one about sadomasochistic relationship with a dominant superior controlling a naïve submissive, errm, and I said don’t be silly of course I’ve read the coalition agreement”, we then had the fortune to find out that “of course I’ve read Fifty Shades Of Grey, for research purposes you understand, but I have to say I don’t think it’s very realistic because let’s be honest what most women want is not a man who ties you to the bed but one that un-stacks the dishwasher as you watch the Great British bake off. Am I right? I’m right.”
Andrew Marr, fearful he would have to retreat to the London hunting grounds for his prey, awoke from another bender the morning after and allegedly squealed with delight when he discovered he could go to Birmingham for the Conservative party conference the following weekend.
“Workers of the world, unite” cried Gideon Osborne whilst demanding that you should lose pretty much every employment right in exchange for some useless pieces of paper. He wasn’t the only one crying, though.
The Prime Minister was almost certainly crying at his weakening position as chances of being a real Prime Minister slip away to his “friend” Boris, members were crying because they have further realised that we’re not the leaders of an empire and are stuck in the E.U. forever, Grant Shapps was crying because his alter egos had been uncovered and Andrew Mitchel was crying because he had been expelled like a naughty child – good job a certain deceased television presenter wasn’t around or he’d have something else to cry about …
The only vaguely hilarious event at the conference was Cameron pretending to know what curry is whilst wondering down the street with SamCam.
After that, the comedy came to a close for yet another year. Marr didn’t get caught with his pants down, Boris didn’t dethrone Cameron, “Red Ed” became “Red ‘the-state-owns-everything-apart-from-when-I-talk-about-elections’ Ed” and Clegg somehow became a pop-star.
Yet, after been severally overused, pleb-a-palooza continued. Thank God for Sir Jimmy Savile.
[Originally published in the Bradford Student on the 7th of November]