I haven’t written much on the blog recently that’s directly about Brexit. Partly, the reason is that I’m continually hearing news stories and vox pops and politicians and business leaders on the radio banging on about it and I’m thinking –
Why do I keep hearing about this? What has this got to do with me? Why does this affect anyone I know?
Then I remember and I’m absolutely furious.
But, hey. Brexit isn’t all bad…
You see, without Brexit, Tusk wouldn’t really be on the radar of the people of these islands.
That ☝️ should be on everyone’s radar already. This 👇
Ah, Dishy Donald in happier times. A month-and-a-half ago, he was all charm and smiles and peace on Earth.
Well, of course Donald trying to keep things cool then. I suspect he subscribes to the apoplectic.me philosophy of trying to stay chill and transmit good vibes. Analysts may contrast him with his predecessor as the President of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy, an understated operator who loves haiku, but Donald’s Christmas message seemed pretty Zen to me.
Yet this week, Tusk came out in a press conference with the Irish Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, and mused
I wonder what that special place in hell looks like, for those who promoted Brexit, without even a sketch of a plan how to carry it out safely. Thank you.
Crikey. What turned that sweet choirboy into this –
Well. Tusk’s life has required him, I would imagine, to draw on deep reserves of inner strength. As a student in Gdańsk in the seventies, he rose up against the Communist occupation with Solidarity. Then in the early eighties, he went into hiding from martial law before being arrested and briefly imprisoned.
That’s goalkeeper Jan Tomaszewski keeping England out of the 1974 World Cup, by the way. Clough had called him a circus clown in gloves before the game.
Fortunately, I can take a deep dive into what’s troubling Donald Tusk. I’m an expert in Biblical grandiloquence, having conceived the character of the Unicerosaurous – a hoax dinosaur with a Messiah complex.
The Unicerosaurous looked like Wayne Hussey of The Mission wearing a t-shirt bearing Samuel L. Jackson’s little soliloquy above. Maybe he would have recognised a little of himself in the way European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker characterised Tusk and his views on hell:
[Donald] strongly believes in heaven and by opposite in hell. I believe in heaven and I have never seen hell, apart [from] during the time I was doing my job here. It’s a hell.
I’ve never seen hell either, but I’ve been researching views on what it might be for a short piece of Gothic fiction I’m working on at the moment. Like my book Stroke: A 5% chance of survival, it bears the influence of Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll And Mr Hyde.
In my research, I discovered in the Church of Scotland’s 1845 The Confession of Faith: The Larger and Shorter Catechisms that the punishments for sin in the world to come include
…everlasting separation from the comforting presence of God.
Surely, a man who stood against martial law as a student must despair of the comforting presence of his god when confronted by a group of adults conducting themselves like a dysfunctional student union.
Yeah. Nice comeback, Labour.
As a non-believer who drew comfort in my own hours of darkness from the absence of any god, I struggle to conceive of what heaven and hell might look like. So, in my research, I’ve tried to find an image that might serve as some sort of touchstone.
See you next time.