Two matters have made me chuckle this morning.
The second, the jape played on Shelagh Fogarty on Radio 5 by Nicky Campbell. What makes the second so brilliant is that Sheila (who I rate the best female radio presenter ever) was able to take a career threatening prank in her stride and that the entire team on the program had absolute confidence in her judgement, common sense and robust sense of humour.
It is a hallmark of a robust, sensible and happy organisation that it can laugh at itself and that there are individuals within those organisations who can be trusted to see the funny side even when the joke is on them. The spoof played on Sheila is available on this link till May 5th.
The truly despicable Ed Balls and the monstrous regiment of women heading up the “outrage” brigade on the Labour front bench are the antithesis of the Radio 5 crew and I hope they get laughed out of court if they pursue their ludicrous claims that Cameron was bullying them.
Sure there are great chunks of the population who do not want to be in the limelight and should be out of the range of such humour but really…senior politicians at question time, BBC presenters at the peak of their game, Mourinho versus Guardiola..without them what would remain - the dried husk of life - the thin gruel of quotidian life dished out by the guardians of public decency. We have got to laugh.
Which brings me on to my personal difficulty, whether to continue to point out the lunacy of a pensions industry dishing out the best part of £1000 a head to entertain itself at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Thursday May 5th.
I have , wittingly, got myself caught up in this by getting myself onto the shortlist of Pension Personality of the Year (yes I know and the joke’s still valid). As I write, I have no invitation to the event though I suspect that my pleas on the Pension Play Pen for an invite may yet bear fruit.
If I were to accept the invitation I would expect to have the urine extracted for biting the hand that fed.
If I turn down the invitation and set up an alternative event in the Audley Public House, I risk dissing the award organisers as well as the thousands of my colleagues for whom an invite to this award ceremony is deemed prestigious.
Wind back to the top of this blog. We live in a lunatic world where we have the opportunity to create some sanity through hard work, good sense and good humour. The platforms on which most of us play out our lives are not the great public theatres but the TV sofas , bars and canteens where we have our say.
What has happened in the past ten years is that the TV sofa moment can now be shared – through blogs, and tweets and instant messaging. These electronic tools allow every “mute inglorious Milton” his or her soapbox. They mean people like me get onto Pension Personality awards and people like Ed Balls get a good kicking.
Best of all, they mean we can have a laugh.
I reckon I will get off my high horse, go to the Ball and put up with the associated ridicule. Whether I win or not – it’s worth bringing a little fun into a dark world. As EP put it “in the gloom the gold gathers the light about it”.
- Radio review: Radio 5 Live Breakfast Show (guardian.co.uk)
- AUDIO: Is it hard to make Liverpudlians laugh? (bbc.co.uk)
- Letter from the editor: A sense of humour (independent.co.uk)
- The New Statesman Politics Interview Yvette Cooper (newstatesman.com)
- MP Angela Eagle sexism row over David Cameron’s ‘calm down dear’ putdown at PMQs (dailymail.co.uk)
- Real Madrid Vs. Barcelona: Post-Game Reaction From Jose Mourinho And Cristiano Ronaldo (sbnation.com)
- Winner Backs Cameron In Sexism Row (news.sky.com)
- Cameron dismisses Labour MP with advertising slogan (guardian.co.uk)
- Laugh (dihamadihah.wordpress.com)
- LOL… really! (buddybreathing.wordpress.com)
- David Cameron accused of sexism after ‘calm down dear’ Commons putdown (dailymail.co.uk)
- “Calm down, dear!” (newstatesman.com)
- Prime Minister plays politics rather than helping hospices – Ian Lucas MP (wrexhamblog.wordpress.com)
- Well you’ve got to laugh..Cameron, Fogarty, Mourinho, me.. (henrytapper.com)
- Mourinho turns fury on UEFA, referee, Guardiola (usatoday.com)
- Jose Mourinho declares the ‘scandal of the Bernabeu’ (sports.yahoo.com)
- Death Wish Dave (notreallyworking.wordpress.com)