Boris Johnson: The Very Definition of “Out of His Depth”

Johnson’s actually managed to achieve what I didn’t think was possible. He’s proving to be even worse as a Prime Minister than I expected.

The arrogance, over-entitlement and lying were entirely anticipated, of course. But the rank amateurism, the desperate cronyism and above all his deep-seated insecurity and the absolute terror in his eyes, in his speech and in his body language are all far worse than I thought they would be.

All of his life he has been desperate to be Prime Minister and now he’s got there, he is hating it. He has spent his entire life seeking out the limelight and he has only now realised that what it is illuminating are his weaknesses not his strengths.

His political manoeuvring is proving to be nothing like as effective as he thinks it is, and his frustration at being mocked instead of respected is showing more and more. The arm-waving, the stream of unfinished sentences and the rapid-fire speaking patterns all tell a story of a man already on the edge of a breakdown.

His strategy of pandering to the prejudices of the uneducated, the unthinking and, yes, the racist portions of our population is coming unravelled as he encounters people who know what they’re doing and are determined to stop him.

He is a triumph of ambition over ability and of education over intelligence. He’s nowhere near as clever as he thought he was, he’s starting to realise that and he absolutely hates it because he knows that we all see it too.

“Look at me, I’m gay” – Who cares?

A year ago, the Metro newspaper did a piece offering advice to young LGBTQ+ people about dealing with life in general. My response was this, which I think bears repeating:

My advice to young alphabet people leaving home is to never forget that you’ll be subject to the same pressures, disappointments and expectations that everyone else is.

There’s still a way to go, but being gay is a lot more mainstream these days which mean that a lot of people, quite rightly, couldn’t give a toss. That indifference is, after all, the ultimate aim of any drive for equality.

If they’re expecting to march into a room, throw their arms wide open shouting “look at me, I’m gay” and have the world fall at their feet in an orgasm of admiration, they’re in for a lot of disappointment.

If there’s nothing more substantial to their character than their sexuality then they should expect life to be trivial, shallow and full of sneering contempt from other people.

Acceptance and indifference are pretty much the same thing, so don’t make the mistake of thinking that the world is building you a pedestal. It isn’t.

7 years ago was my first Games Maker shift

Seven years ago this afternoon was my first-ever volunteer shift at the Olympic Games – working at Stratford Gate getting people into the Stadium for a technical rehearsal of the opening ceremony. I remember it being a weird combination of excitement that it was all starting, fear at the sheer scale of what we were attempting, and worry that it was going to go wrong somehow. 

Of course, it didn’t go wrong at all. It turned out to be utterly brilliant and the best ever advertisement for this city and this country. There was hope and optimism and people were talking to strangers and they were smiling all the time. It was exciting, inspiring, thrilling and the community spirit was phenomenal. A real shared experience of everyone pulling together where we threw a huge party, invited people from all over the world and did our best to make sure they had a good time.

I miss those days. I miss them terribly. It breaks my heart to see just how far we have fallen in seven short years. From a country that stood proudly on the world stage and was applauded for “doing it right” to a country slinking off the stage as an example of exactly how not to do it. From a country that opened its doors to friends from around the planet to a country determined to slam that door, friendless, in the faces of everybody outside.

From inspiration to embarrassment, from leader to left-behind, from participant to pariah.

So sad. So very, very sad. Not least because we did this to ourselves.

“I don’t judge”

I really wish people would stop saying & writing “I don’t judge”. 

It’s a lie. Everyone judges all the time. 

It’s how we decide how to vote, where to shop, what to wear and who to like, marry and have sex with.

“I don’t judge” is just virtue-signaling, smug, sanctimonious bullshit and a juvenile attempt at putting themselves on a quite unjustifiable pedestal.

It’s their attempt at saying “Don’t judge me” and it never – *ever* – works, because by saying that you’re automatically judged and found wanting.

Bored already with the Danny Baker fuss

Bored already by the Danny Baker fuss.

Was it juvenile? Yes. Was it inappropriate? Yes. Was it racist? The intent was not, but the interpretation was. The second that the racist interpretation was pointed out to Baker, he deleted the post and apologised for it.

But that’s not good enough for the professionally-offended fuckwits on social media who love nothing more than being judge, jury and executioner. The people actively seeking offence, usually unrequested and on behalf of someone else.

These days, sadly, it’s not enough to raise an indignant eyebrow, tut, and metaphorically slap someone around the head, telling them to grow up.

These days, at the very minimum, it has to be career-ending in order to placate the mindless and moronic audience around the social media gallows.

It’s fucking pathetic, it really is.

I’m no fan of Baker – I have him blocked on Twitter because his whitterings irritate me. So this doesn’t come from any fanboy perspective. I don’t even like the guy.

But I’ve used this phrase so often lately that I want it on my gravestone:

Where did all the adults go? I miss them.

Things to avoid when you’re anywhere near me.

There are many irritating things about modern living.

In order to save some time in the future, here’s a short and incomplete list of things that irritate me.

Avoid them and we’ll get along just fine.

  • Over-entitlement
  • Platitudes
  • Wilful ignorance
  • Expectation of empathy
  • Demands for respect
  • Bandwagons
  • Opportunism
  • Professional victims
  • Populism
  • Religion – all of them
  • Clichés
  • Hand-wringers
  • Virtue-signallers
  • Shallow thinkers
  • “Inspirational” stories
  • Trial by social media
  • Instagram “models”
  • Assumptions
  • Under-analyses
  • Bureaucracy
  • Videoing things instead of watching them

And finally…

  • Lists.

Brexit is about irrelevance.

There’s always a danger in over-simplifying, of course, but to my mind it’s really quite simple. Brexit is about how irrelevant people deal with their irrelevance.

Leavers have reached a crisis point and cannot deal with it any more. The massive insecurity that they feel at being irrelevant manifests itself against those they falsely see as oppressing them – the establishment: especially the EU which is full of “bloody foreigners”. They cling to trite little slogans that promise relevance, like “taking back control” and other bullshit, as though they’re survivors of the Titanic. They have no idea – absolutely no idea – how to cope with their empty, shallow lives, so they’re lashing out now that they’ve been enabled by lying chancers like Farage, Johnson and Rees Mogg.

Remainers, on the other hand, are dealing with our irrelevance much better. We know we’re a knackered old has-been of an island at the arse end of Europe that nobody would really miss if it sunk, so we’re making the best of it by wanting to be a part of something bigger. We’re content with paying to be a part of the club and the club is happy to put up with our belligerent bullshit so long as we do so. We’re not threatened by them and actually quite like being asked occasionally what we think about stuff. It’s nice being in the club because we can pretend that we’re important even if deep down we really know we’re not.

I think that it really is that simple.