On Honourable Exits

Posted by in February's Magazine

I’m writing this at a furious pace, lest a few more icons go to meet their maker before the keyboard stops wobbling. Yes, January (and the end of December) has been a right old bastard for dead famous people…in both senses. Mortality comes as no surprise of course. Unless you’re George Osborne who is not human born and slurps down a bowl of souls stewing in the tears of the poor of a morning, pausing only to sneer at the memory of a kitten fondue he once enjoyed at Davos.


With talents of such magnitude taking their leave well before time, it seems churlish to waste space ranting on about twattish temporal matters. But the whole wretched show, this fetid circus of lies venality and general crappiness we refer to as ‘public life’, must go on I suppose. I’ll pause here to let anyone of a cheerful disposition leave the article – for a hard cynical rain is going to fall. And, ladies and gents, this month’s victim is the discredited bauble fest that is the British honours system.

It’s hard to find a better metaphor for the rottenness that passes as the ‘way things are’. No, I’m not talking about the loyal lollipop lady from Leeds or the brave bus driver from Braemar, the ordinary punters who deserve recognition for their everyday heroics, I’m talking about the prize pricks that revel in some imagined glory when they are nowt but a gang of soul-sapping sorters, spivs and sinecure grabbers, sucking from the suppurating teat of political patronage. Or ‘wanks’ for short.

About now, I can hear eyes rolling. It’s so passé to play the class card isn’t it? Well, it’s not about class actually – quite the opposite. It’s a distinct lack of class that sees anyone of note cosy up to the Ruritanian fantasy that is the dispensation of gongs in the name of a non-existent empire. Deadbeat lotharios filling their coffers long past their sell-by date for example – otherwise known as Sir Mick Jagger. It doesn’t mean I can’t listen to Brown Sugar anymore. It just means I can’t take the bee-stung ghoul puppet seriously anymore. Ditto Sir Paul fecking McCartney. I mean really?

Contrast those two with Bowie who rather wonderfully refused both a CBE and a knighthood, saying (and this sums it up perfectly), “I seriously don’t know what it’s for”. I suspect he knew all too well what such preposterous titles are all about…maintaining the supposedly natural order of things based on grubby favours, old school connections and most likely the odd bung to party purses.

Sure every society is stratified – and not always in healthy ways – but this year’s crop of nakedly political awards renders the whole thing more laughable than normal. Which is hard when you have the warm-up act that is the House of Lords to contend with. Dame Michelle Mone – that’s as good a one-liner as you’ll ever hear on the Fringe.

But the response from most of us is a shrug at best. It’s as though they don’t bother trying to conceal the fact it’s one big gang-bang for corporate shills, political placemen and toadyish retainers. Because they know that people are too tired getting on with their real lives to care much – that and a percentage of gullible dullards who actually believe in all the crap. Meanwhile, those who dare to break cover by demanding respect for their profession and the right to pursue it properly for the sake of the public (i.e. Junior Doctors) are demonised as uncaring militants and troublemakers.

A gauche comparison perhaps but not entirely misplaced. Maybe we need to reinvent the honours system entirely.

Or better still replace it with mystery prizes for those considered deserving of recognition. I say ‘mystery’ but in reality, mirroring the corruption behind the scenes, we’d conspire to determine which prize goes to which goon in advance. Here are some starter thoughts.

Embroidered suicide note quilt for Iain Duncan Smith
The quiet man is quietly overseeing a revolution in our welfare culture. No more scrounging masses when Iain’s on the job. Unfortunately there have been a few erm, deaths along the way – folk who would rather end it all than get booted into the gutter by an unthinking political replicant. This little present should prove fitting therefore. May it keep him warm (though I’m convinced he’s cold-blooded).

A year’s evening classes in coprophagia for Katie Hopkins
This harridan of hate is despicable. But best let her carry on – censorship never works. Instead perhaps a course to sharpen up her excrement consumption might be in order. She squeezes shit out of the bully hole she calls a gob every time she opens it. So maybe we can repay the favour.

A moment of self-reflectionfor Jose Mourinho
Is this possible? Could a sociopathic narcissist like Jose ever comprehend what a completely truculent, self-pitying bell-end he has become? Maybe not, but as long as we have our strength, we can always try. We can but live in eternal hope.

One response to “On Honourable Exits”

  1. Alan Rough says:

    Righteous anger

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