Barrel scraper Grant Shapps takes us for a ride | Stewart Lee

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In 2002, I accessed the 3,000-year-old underground ceremonial chamber Pendeen Fogou in North West Cornwall, crawling through a 2ft deep river of liquid cow manure. Once inside I was transformed and it was worth it. Wednesday I crawled through the dirt again, trying to read the Daily mail as a search for this column. But, unlike my Pendeen Fogou epiphany, the experience only caused nausea. What a week in British politics it has been!

Multifaceted Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps historically manifests himself under many different identities. On Monday, as Grant Shapps, he addressed Brexit Britain via video on the benefits of Brexit, while riding a lawnmower. “Now, thanks to Brexit,” Shapps boasted, snake oil-like, “we’ve been able to drop the Vnuk Act” (requiring car insurance to also cover lawnmowers and golf carts). golf). “And in these tough financial times,” Shapps concluded, as if the tough financial times had nothing to do with him and his party, “it’s going to help the average motorist save about £50.” This, of course, more than offsets the 4% estimated by the Office for Budget Responsibility that Brexit has hit the UK economy over the next 15 years. Riding mowers are free! But until all home horticulture vehicles are free, this Brexit bonus will ring hollow!

Typically, the EU had already repealed the Vnuk Act during the Brexit transition phase anyway, while we neglected to do so. At least when creating fake online reviews for his companies, Shapps used to hide behind implausible pseudonyms – Michael Green, Sebastian Fox or Corinne Stockheath. (Corinne Stockheath is a name that never existed outside Shapps’ vivid imagination, although it looks like you can now follow her on Twitter). The next time Shapps rides a lawn mower to lie about Brexit and lawn mowers, he should be doing it as one of his made up identities. The riding mower is apparently Corinne Stockheath’s favorite mode of transport.

“Maybe the grass can be just a little greener,” Shapps soliloquized, shutting up like a dumb donkey, before getting into the lawn mower as the sun set. Maybe the grass can be greener, Grant, but not on the Kentish roadsides, where relief truckers have turned the green grass all yellow. And brown. Because of Brexit. Indeed, the chairman of the Transport Select Committee, MP Huw Merriman, recently stepped into human excrement during a fact-finding mission to a rest stop in Kent. Hopefully that gave him an idea of ​​the benefits of Brexit.

And how those stranded lorry drivers must envy the speed at which Shapps’ ride-on lawn mower is able to travel. Cramped in their stationary taxis at night, they dream of speeding two miles an hour across a field on a riding lawnmower, mowing down the letters Vnuk in a brutal Brexit metaphor that’s as inane as it is dishonest.

Is this the best you got, Brexiters? A £50 cut on lawnmower insurance that the EU had already scrapped anyway? Well. It will now be cheaper to trim sunny highland grass. Perhaps Corinne Stockheath could keep mowing lawns while Shapps himself concentrates on scraping barrels.

It’s Wednesday morning. A quarter of a century ago, I made the mistake of stepping out of a jeep into the river lands of Lake Bonney in South Australia, and suddenly every square inch of my face and body was covered in a swarm of black flies. That’s what the news looks like right now: so many sick stories happening to you all at once. What do you want me to satirize this week, liberals of Observer-earth? Pro-Brexit holidaymakers exasperated by the passport checks they voted for? Or Nadine Dorries’ downstream tennis court dyslexia? Covid collects millions in suitcases that disappear? Or wasted billions on contract buddies? Sexual misconduct in the office? Or top internet porn? Replacement red wall funding promises broken? Or the end of Erasmus educational opportunities? Sewage spill or more fines for partying? Lawn Mower Insurance Dividends or Government Human Trafficking? Cultural vandalism on Channel 4 or Covid scandal in nursing homes. Which of these stories flies first? Answer me!

I stumble around Southend-on-Sea, where I worked the day before, looking at newspapers in shops. I can see from the front of the Daily mail that the disappointing Dan Hodges is crouched with his thighs apart on his milking stool, desperately drawing the last jets of black poison from the dry udders of Angela Rayner’s Leg-Gate story as a zombie farmer. For money. I know that if I read To postThe cover of Leg-Gate would get me 1,000 words out of it, but that means either visiting the Daily mail website or buy a physical copy, which help the horrible paper, and therefore are not morally acceptable options.

It’s 12:15 p.m. I go to M&S to buy my usual lunch: a 120g platter of British Coronation chicken strips and egg mayonnaise. In the queue, I browse the newspaper rack Daily mail free. I’m stuck in a double spread that purports to prove that Rayner found his sexual objectification delicious via an old interview that actually proves the exact opposite. But suddenly it’s time for me to scan my proteins. Thinking on my feet, I do the only moral thing and slip the Daily mail in my unpaid bag.

I sat on the cliff with my chicken products and my flight Daily mail. Maybe it was all the egg mayonnaise, but after the first couple of pages I threw up slightly in my mouth, so I put the Daily mail in a dog waste bin and decided to run with the riding lawn mowers. These people just want you to talk about them anyway. Life’s too short to expose yourself to that kind of shit.

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