The Plastic Hippo

May 1, 2016


Filed under: Health,History,Literature,Media,Politics,Society — theplastichippo @ 1:01 am
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Picasso sketch 1964

Picasso sketch 1964

O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention to describe just how bloody wonderful it is to be an Englishman living in these joyous times.

Firstly we celebrated 90 glorious years of divine monarchy dedicating a lifetime of hollow crown duty by waving a lot and having to endure the permanent smell of fresh paint. Then we commemorated our holy English values as epitomised by our noble patron Saint George. As with most versions of English history, George`s origins and ethnicity are a little vague. He might have been born in Cappadocia which would make him a Turk or he might have been born in the Roman province of Syria Palaestina which roughly translates as either Syria or Palestine. What is certain is that he was not born within the concrete O of the M25, he did not speak English and his dragon slaying activities took place far away from Albion in a place called Beirut. Crying God for Harry, England and Agios Georgios might make you sound… well… a bit foreign.

Mercifully, a Christian Saint of the importance of Saint George would, if he were around today, have very little interest in an off shore backwater obsessed with a fairly shameful past of plunder, empire and oppression. He had long been martyred before the Union Flag became known as the colonial butcher`s apron and his inability to speak or even understand the English language will have spared him the confusion of understanding how hundreds of patriotic English MPs voted to abandon 3,000 unaccompanied children fleeing barbarism and desperately seeking a place of safety. My guess is that Saint George has more in common with Syrian orphans than patriotic English MPs and their perfectly reasonable expenses claims. All in all, it makes you incredibly proud to be English as long as you can prove you have trace DNA that can distance you from the patriotic English MPs bringing this England into disrepute with self interested cant and hypocrisy.

With patriotic MPs of all hues telling bare-faced, ridiculous lies about the future of the European Union and with a government claiming to offer greater parental choice in education by imposing a single model designed to make money for people who have money and do not work and allowing an “entrepreneur” to plunder a failing company to furnish himself with another yacht, there has never been a better time to be proud of being English. Any mention of pension funds, plunder, yachts and Robert Maxwell must be avoided as any criticism of Sir Philip Green and the good ship BHS would be clearly anti-Semitic.

Add to this outpouring of national pride the rigour, effectiveness and absolute inevitability of the English legal system. The shield of truth and the sword of justice will always prevail and history will attest that in the 27 years since the Hillsborough tragedy, facts are held within the province of authority. We should be proud that justice and truth is made available to all once the powerful and, by implication, the guilty are safely cold in their graves. Our government wishes to distance us from the European Convention on Human Rights. This is perfectly understandable as the Hillsborough inquiry could not have taken place without the ECHR and any criticism of the Yorkshire coroner who died recently would be blatantly anti-Semitic. These are the best days to be alive and be English.

The quality of mercy, however, is not strained and if we should dare to prick the English pound of flesh we will discover an anti-Semitic news agenda that delightfully distracts and entertains in equal measures. It would seem that criticising a nation state that deploys tanks against children in Gaza and plants knives next to the corpses of murdered young women is, in some way, anti-Semitic. It`s not anti anything to face up to nasty politicians, charlatans, opportunists and totalitarian governments who have abandoned any sense of decency or honesty. Apparently, Hitler was a Communist for entering into a non-aggression pact with Stalin in 1940; he personally designed the VW so is responsible for vehicle emissions conspiracy and designed the Biro and thus the ruination of many a white shirt. Hitler and Jeremy Corbyn are obviously the same person and Ken Livingstone is an evil fascist placed on earth for the sole purpose of keeping education, corporate fraud, corruption, bigotry, xenophobia and Little Englander hypocrisy well away from the top of the news along with the insignificant story of some sort of junior doctor industrial action within the NHS. As an innocent aside – shut up Ken, you might be correct but you are not helping.

In celebrating our Englishness, nothing can compare to the anniversary of the death and possible birth of one William Shakespeare, the Prince of Minneapolis. As with most versions of English history, Will`s origins and ethnicity are a little vague. Even now, some academics cannot accept that a middle-class tradesman with a funny midland accent could have invented such literature. We do not know the exact date of his birth so instead of St Crispin or the Ides of March, St George`s Day will do as it makes it easier to remember in more difficult history exams. Mercifully, Shakespearian “experts” crow barring the bard into every media reference for a week or so will now disappear for another hundred years and can stop telling us of the words and phrases that Shakespeare introduced to the English language. Will did not invent “selfie” or “omnishambles” or “brexit”. He did, however, describe the seven ages of man in the voice of melancholy Jaques in As You Like It:

“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
Then, the whining school-boy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then, a soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden, and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then, the justice,
In fair round belly, with a good capon lined,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws, and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.”

Act II – Scene VII

This Englishness that we are obliged to celebrate is through a prism sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything. Saint George is behind barbed wire and is having tear gas fired at him as he tries to protect children. He is, most definitely, not welcome here.


  1. Good to see that you are back and with scalpel sharpened. At the risk of sycophancy, this is one of your best.

    On a more prosaic note, the Bards anniversary and Leicester City’s triumph reminded me of a song by a long-forgotten Leicester band – Diesel Park West. Back in the late 80’s they delivered an interesting album called Shakespeare’s Alabama.

    The lyrics of one song still seem appropriate.

    ‘Oh. I am a humble man, thankful for my rights and inheritance due
    How about you?
    And I want to stay in sight of things that I believe in
    And I know to be true, the sweet sweet truth

    I wouldn’t question letters of authority,
    Yeah I keep the bedroom cold to save energy, ‘cos it’s good for me

    And as long as there’s something for me
    As long as the world swings my way I don’t have any complaints

    Oh I believe all the myths on Sunday

    Yeah. I am as white as snow, ‘cept for when I sit out in the sun
    The hot sun, then I look so different
    Just like I’ve become an African

    I’m always showing clearly my morality
    Yeah. I rule by consent of the majority ain’t it good to see

    Yes sir it’s a wonderful life making these decisions
    Just for you, no-one but you’

    Hardly up to Big Wills best but still apposite almost 30 years later.

    Comment by The Realist — May 4, 2016 @ 11:32 am | Reply

  2. If you don’t like living here, leave. And perhaps before spouting off nonsense, do a bit more research than a quick wiki article glance. Ignorant leftists like you are so pathetic.

    Comment by tom — June 9, 2016 @ 8:21 pm | Reply

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