The UK is leaving the EU. It’s happening on the 31st January 2020. What shall we do to celebrate? Well the latest idea cooked up by the Brexiteers (presumably from the same cookbook Dom Raab uses to make toast) is to have a special bonging of Big Ben (for those of you thinking that bonging isn’t a real word, it was used by the House of Commons Commission in the phrase ‘bonging mechanism’ – so there).
“So what?”, you might ask. “Get onboard and accept it’s jolly well happening”, you might say. Well, the problem is that it will cost £500,000 for this festive bonging. Assuming Bulky Benjamin will ring 11 times (it’ll be at 12am Brussels, which is 11pm our time – those pesky Europeans taking the reins again), then we’ll be forking out £45,000 a chime! If that seems ridiculous to you, then you’re not alone. The House Commission also came to the conclusion it’s not worth it (party poopers). So now, the Brexiteers, with our Prime Minister at the helm, are suggesting that the money should be crowdfunded. Boris has suggested that people “bung a bob for a Big Ben bong” (a fellow fan of alliteration). So, clearly it’s a priority. It all begs the question: what exactly is this half a million sterling going to be spent on?! The mind boggles.
“So what?”, you might ask. “Get onboard and accept it’s jolly well happening”, you might say.
Whilst there might be official reasons for this cost (by which I mean there definitely are), I fear we are being kept in the dark about the true explanation for the expense of this exultation. There must be a justification for the costliness of this clanging and I can only assume it’s being kept a secret to give us a surprise on Brexit day, making the whole affair even more special. Something to accompany Nigel Farage singing Brexit songs in Parliament Square (actually happening). So, without further ado, I’ll let you in on the theories I’ve come up with after exhaustive investigation into the matter. After scrutinising the options, I’ve managed to narrow it down to the three most likely possibilities.
First on the list is that a celebrity is being flown in to pull the bell ropes. Whilst there were many candidates for who this could be, I’m basically convinced it would be Donald Trump. Boris has really warmed to him since becoming PM and Farage has always liked to think he’s a close chum of POTUS. Actually, come to think of it, maybe there’s a clue in that acronym… Pulling Of The… hmm… never mind. Anyway, Trump doesn’t seem to have a particularly rigorous schedule, having had 257 rounds of golf whilst in office. I’m sure he could easily fit in a spot of bell-ringing between his weekly meeting with Ms Kardashian and a quick phone call to Ukraine. Also, if there’s such a thing as a bell-ringer’s build, I reckon he’s got it.
Much better to be painted red, white and blue – make it a bit more patriotic; show its commitment to the cause.
If that doesn’t turn out to be the case, I think that Boris may be trying to rebrand the Big Ben bell (why does everything in this story begin with ‘B’?). Having completed a successful rebranding of the party, Boris (or rather Dom Cummings), could well be turning his hand to the gong above Parliament. Apparently, it’s the same bell as the one first fitted when Burly Benedict was built in 1859. Not quite as old as the Tory Party, but probably due for a revamp nonetheless. The colour of it has always been a bit dull, hasn’t it? Not sure why they chose such a boring metallic shade. Much better to be painted red, white and blue – make it a bit more patriotic; show its commitment to the cause.
My final theory involves a big assumption: that the tears fallen from the eyes of Remainers over the last few years have been collected, bottled and stored in some weird wine cellar. Assuming that this has been done, my hunch is that there might be a sort of ritual cleansing of the bell before it is struck (the moment when Remainers suddenly lose their right to opposition). In some kind of strange Harry Potter-esque moment, the bell will be rinsed in the tears of the enemy and will jubilantly chime out for all those watching. Then the band below will start up with Willie Nelson’s ‘Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain’ and Nige will belt out the Brexit adaptation of the lyrics:
“In the almost twilight (those pesky Europeans – see above) glow I see them
Blue Remoaner eyes cryin’ in the rain
When we kissed goodbye and parted
I knew we’d never meet again”
All of these seem pretty plausible. And all adequate for celebrating the beginning of an exciting new era: the change from being in the EU to still basically being in the EU until we actually leave after getting some more deals.