Another Imaginary Cabinet Meeting at
Number 10; early October 2003
Usual sound of running up the stairs,
the door flies open, and the PM bursts into the cabinet room.
Good god deputy PM where's that music
It's not really music PM it's supposed
to be musak, just a nice soothing noise.
It sounds like fiddles playing.
It's supposed to make you feel calm
I don't want to feel calm.
We're under orders from your better
What! And why has the table been moved
and where's my chair deputy PM?
We've had a re-arrangement PM.
Why on earth have you done that?
It's so we could get this nice new reclining
armchair in place PM.
Here, PM sit down and try it out while
I fetch your tea.
Yes PM no more coffee I'm afraid.
Do you mean some of the irks haven't
coughed up their 50p subs again deputy PM.
I can assure you I didn't pretend to slip a coin in and just
shake the tin like some people I could mention!
No it's not that PM. We still have the
coffee fund tin for the rest of us but we're under orders to
serve you tea from now on PM.
That's just not acceptable Deputy PM!
I thought you'd say that PM so we had
a vote and agreed you need only slip in 40p if that helps.
I didn't mean that... Oh just forget
it and pass me the tea and why is there nobody else here Deputy
PM, it's past 9 o'clock?
Has everyone got flu or something?
No it's not like that PM.
You know how everyone is always bickering
and arguing about the Euro and the NHS and stuff?
I suppose so Deputy PM.
Well I thought that you'd feel less
stressed if we just had a little meeting between the two of us
in future. The cabinet already met earlier and I made some notes
I'm not sure I like this Deputy PM.
I could get some PG Tips PM if you'd
I don't mean the tea!
Oh, sorry PM, try pulling on this lever
and lean back slightly.
I don't mean the recliner Deputy PM!
I mean I like to shout at people in private and I can't just
shout at you. You never listen!
You could read the notes I made PM and
I could write replies to people with a note in the margin that
you shouted PM.
No that's not good enough Deputy PM.
I like to see people actually sort of cringe. I have to keep
smiling in public and it's not the same. The only chance I get
to shout and make faces is here in private.
I'm getting all stressed Deputy PM just thinking about everything.
Just lie back PM and listen to the nice
If you insist Deputy PM, it is rather
nice in front of the fire.
By the way Deputy PM I don't ever remember seeing a coal fire
here before. Has the central heating broken down?
No PM a coal fire is supposed to be
soothing if you just relax and look at the hot coals.
What shall we talk about now I'm here?
We've had a lot of moans from the rank
and file members.
It seems that because most of them have
flats on the outskirts of the City PM, and they have to get the
train to come into work. They're all complaining because they
have to stand all the way.
Why can't they use their cars?
It's this special car tax PM that your
mate Ken has imposed.
He's not my mate Deputy PM!
Anyway PM. It seems that lots and lots
of people aren't using their cars any more to come in. They're
travelling by train instead.
There just aren't enough seats now and if you get on after Bournemouth
you have to stand.
Why don't the rail people get more trains?
They did PM. You remember. They bought
loads of new trains at enormous expense from a German train firm
but when they tried the first one it just made a loud humming
noise and lots of smoke came out from underneath.
Don't remind me deputy PM. They were
made for German tracks and they're a different voltage.
I hope the chap in charge, ho ho ho.. do you like that pun Deputy
PM, got his marching orders.
Not up to your usual standard PM, but
yes he did and he retired to the Costa del Sol with the seven
figure settlement he gave himself.
I say Deputy PM do you think we could
arrange something like that?
Pour me another cup of tea and let me
lie back and try out this new chair in front of the fire for
a bit before I have to show up in the house and smile at everyone.
What's that sticking out of the ceiling?
That's very observant of you to notice
I didn't ask for a comment on my eyesight
Deputy PM, I asked what it is.
Well PM you remember the other day when
the power went off and it went dark and lots of people had to
Yes but what's that got to do with that
thing sticking out of the ceiling?
It's a fitting for our new gas lamp
Don't tell me we're getting gas lighting
I didn't mean that literally, tell me
why we're getting gas lamps!
It's all to do with under investment
boss. The choice for the privatised electric companies is either
short-term profit and cash for the shareholders or long-term
reliable electricity. They say they can't manage both with all
the rules we're making.
I have it on the best authority that the power cuts are going
to get more and more frequent and I thought it prudent PM to
get gas installed
or at least re-installed as I believe
all the pipes are still there under the wallpaper.
Once the news gets out there'll be a big rush to have gas installed
and I thought we'd get our order in first
just in case.
Will we have to get a gas powered door
bell Deputy PM?
No boss, it has a battery.
Oh by the way Deputy PM, there's another
thing as well.
I nearly forgot.
As I came in earlier I noticed a bicycle rack outside the front
door. Can you explain that?
Oh yes PM I was going to mention that.
Remember last week when two tube
trains fell off the rails?
Indeed I do Deputy PM but why the bike
I've heard that those two trains were
just the beginning PM. There's going to be a lot more problems
with the tubes. It's all to do with saving money on maintenance.
I heard that one of the chaps re-laying rails was using a piece
of string to measure the width between the tracks because he
hadn't been supplied with a ruler or whatever it is they're supposed
to use. Because some of the rails are too far apart the trains
will fall off if they're going too slowly.
All very interesting Deputy PM, but
why the bike rack outside my front door?
I thought it would be a good idea for
those lads and lasses that usually visit you by tube PM. If they
want to make sure they're not late for a meeting they should
come by bicycle and according to the Health and Safety Regulations
we have to have a proper bicycle rack in case somebody trips
Say no more Deputy PM I feel a little
weak. Just let me relax in my new recliner and gaze at our new
coal fire and listen to those nice violins