London hyperbole levels return to normal

Hyperbole, exaggeration and ridiculously self-important statements have finally receded in London following last week’s tube strikes.

Following 48 hours of having to endure a slightly shitter tube network than normal, incidences of phrases like ‘Blitz spirit’, ‘Dunkirk mentality’ and ‘travel hell’ have dropped down to normal London levels, roughly five times the national average. An actual judge used the words ‘Dunkirk spirit’ to describe a jury managing to make it to court and nobody batted an eyelid, as though reaching a central London location using a still acceptable level of public transport were in any way akin to floating into a warzone across miles of open sea in a bathtub. Similarly, literally all of the people who described an exchange of pleasantries on a bus as ‘Blitz spirit’ were subsequently at a loss to explain how this event was in any way comparable to having high explosive dropped on your house for several years.

The level of blatant egocentrism sweeping the Big Smoke threatened to exceed tolerable levels and leave Londoners weeping uncontrollably into their soy lattes, bleating about enduring terrible hardship. Examples of these travails include waiting 10 minutes for a tube, unplanned use of own legs and talking to other Londoners in a semi-civil manner.

However did we survive?

However did we survive?

Indeed, the infectious wave of camaraderie threatened to engulf the entire capital – reports suggest an outbreak of singing on one bus and strangers helping a fainting woman on another. Many Londoners found themselves unable to intentionally elbow strangers or block people from getting off trains despite a strong urge to do so. They found themselves speaking in tongues, uttering alien phrases like ‘no, you first’. Many have subsequently described the experience as ‘hellish’.

Thankfully, the episode has passed and a healthy level of fear and hatred of one’s fellow human has been re-instilled across the capital.

The rest of the UK, predictably, have failed to see what the problem is with waiting 10 minutes for a bus or train and have quietly pointed out that while it must be quite tough to have to walk to work, it’s probably almost as tough to have your house flooded, have your transport network washed away and your entire county re-classified as a large lake. They have also suggested that Londoners who still think they’ve got any kind of issues at all might like to swap lives for a week, or kindly shut up.

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New Year celebrations ‘somewhat premature’

As 2014 rumbles into its third consecutive day of being unfathomably awful, the wild celebrations and raised hopes of the nation are starting to look slightly misplaced.

Expectant Britons awoke bleary-eyed and possibly next to a stranger or farm animal sometime around tea-time on the 1st of January, certain that the financial worries, scandal and general dampness of 2013 were a thing of the past. Many were devastated to find that 2014 was possibly more shit than its predecessor; elation turned to embarrassment as roughly 99% of the population remembered sincerely believing that 2014 was going to be great, and telling this loudly and repeatedly to friends, loved ones and people they met on bridges just hours beforehand.

Probably caused by immigrants.

Probably caused by immigrants.

If the first three days of the new year are a good barometer of the rest of the year, and they almost definitely are, the UK is in for a metaphorical and in all likelihood literal shitstorm over the coming 362 days.

The first concern is the weather, which has cranked up a notch since midnight two days ago from ‘Biblical’ to ‘how does one construct an Ark?’ on the Beaufort scale. Dorset has gone from ‘quite waterlogged’ to ‘pretty much an extension of the sea’ on the Guardian’s how-flooded-is-my-county infographic, while in other parts of the UK the flood warnings have gone off the traditional Yellow-Amber-Red scale and into the little used ‘black’ warning, which is simply the word ‘REPENT’ written in blood on a wall.

In society, everyone is now even more skint than last year, ironically due to overspending on New Year celebrations. Hearteningly, BNP aubergine-in-chief Nick Griffin has been declared bankrupt in possibly the only positive news story of the year so far. He has also added some ironic cheer by announcing that he is writing a booklet on how to deal with debt – likely to be as useful as Accrington Stanley’s guide to winning the Champion’s League.

Back on the downside, every celebrity from the seventies is still a paedophile, your job is just as tedious as it was last year and if the Daily Mail is to be believed there are Romanians and Bulgarians stealing that job, as well as your car, home and spouse, as you read this.

In sport, the England cricket team continue to push the very limits of sporting ineptitude and poor decision-making, culminating in electing to send Michael Carberry out to bat with a potato masher, putting a blancmange in at number eight, and then bowling underarm to Brad Haddin.

Time will tell whether 2014 will carry out its threat to be a complete bastard of a year. If it is, there are already plans afoot to alter the traditional New Year’s celebrations across the country from a joyful, welcoming occasion to a sinister, threatening one. Fireworks and champagne will be replaced by hard looking bastards with clubs, muttering threats. Auld Lang Syne and ill-advised kisses will make way for battle speeches, manly fist bumps and three minutes to ‘get tooled up’. 2015 will of course be welcomed in a civil enough fashion, but it will know that the second it tries to dick us about we’re going to smash it’s fucking teeth in.