• Ron Finnigan

DON'T PANIC!



The Layman’s Guide to a post-Brexit Britain is the World’s most popular book, after The Bible. It has sold twice as many copies as the third most popular book, Frixit: The French Revolution Was Crap and They Should All Just Eat Cake Anyway, co-authored by Morris Johnson and Michael Glove. The second most-popular book was actually a trilogy ghost-written for Donald Trump: The EU is Shit, Let’s All Shit on the EU, and I Don’t Have Shit for Brains, but because of their brevity were published in one book. The actual author has never been identified.

The Layman’s Guide also has a searchable version online in the Googolplex databases. Before the vote, the three most common online searches of the database included:

  1. Where is Brexit located?

  2. Who is this Brexit person anyway and why does he want to leave us?

  3. Do my farts smell if they don’t make a sound?

Except for the last question, there were no easy YES or NO answers, unlike the Brexit referendum question itself.

The STAY campaigners were not prepared for the success of the LEAVE vote. The assumption was that the plot of any “Carry-on …” movie would suffice as an effective plan after the voting results were tallied. The disappointing result revealed there was no plan “B”, no contingency for the possibility they might lose. Some suggested “Titanic” with David Cimeron shouting “I’m the king of the World” might help.

On the other hand, all the LEAVE promoters were actually extremely confident of the result and had an exit plan. Unfortunately, this was a plan to LEAVE politics, bury their heads in the sands of the Sahara Desert and pretend they were ostriches for the rest of their lives. A refugee crisis of unparalleled proportions was created when millions of YES lemmings followed their leaders by first marching relentlessly into the English Channel and then swimming to Africa, where they wouldn’t have to keep listening to all the STAY voting twats who kept berating how fucking stupid they were.

Finally, the “I can’t decide” leaders decided to seize control of the fallout and called for a Royal Commission after it was decided that while they had the answer, no one understood what the question was. They needed to get everyone together and figure out the great question so they could have a do-over and this time get an answer that made sense. The conference was in Cork, Ireland and the theme was, “Let’s put a cork in this Brexit once and all.” After 42 months of debate considering 2,405 different questions, a consensus developed and a press conference was called to announce their momentous findings.

All major party leaders were present at the press conference.

Prime Minister David Cimeran, the leader of the Conservurass party, confidently strode up the aisle to take his place, symbolically, on the right-most chair on the stage, surrounded by a dozen paranoid personal security guards in discount business suits and wearing sun glasses too dark to see their eyes. No one even tried to approach him. His glowing toothy smile hid the legendary fury he could unleash, as he often did on the floor of the House of Commons. During such an outburst his face would fill with red rage and he would spout his indecipherable tirades about the Opposition, rather than answer questions or address concerns raised.

Some claimed these were part of an ancient alien dialect transmitted on secret frequencies to a nearby “unpopulated” star planet system. It basically contained the hidden message, “We’re all fucked. Invade us. Feel free to rape, pillage and probe us to your heart’s content. We all live in this messy people zoo and we need someone else to clean up our mess any way.”

Since the vote, David had been traveling the World trying to sell his message with the slogan, “Britain good. Brexit bad. Please buy British adult nappies.”

Marie Cheri was the new leader of the Fuddle-Duddles, a name the party could not shake off after she responded to a reporter’s query for comments about the vote with the words: “Fuck off”. Politically correct journalists had grown tired of printing the asterisk-filled expletive since a headline screaming “F**k O**” was producing too many Googolplex searches for “FKO”. One tabloid that did spell it out saw their sales plummet as the Christian Right and the Muslim Left united under the “Don’t Fornicate Under Command of the King” initiative to boycott the publication.

The Morning Post finally came up with the phrase “Fuddle Duddle” to replace the offensive words. Originally spoken by former Canadian Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau decades earlier, the phrase was readily co-opted by Canada’s former colonial masters.

Suddenly all British publications were printing bold “FUDDLE DUDDLE” headlines, and the “Party Who Couldn’t Make Up Its Mind”, “PWCMUIM” for short, became the Fuddle-Duddles. Public Relations firms, who tried unsuccessfully to change the name to something else, finally began embracing “FUDDLE-DUDDLE” (all caps) as a good and glorious name the party was proud of, and long live the Queen.

Marie joined David on stage sitting in the middle position to David’s left.

Finally, the loyal opposition leader Nigel Lefarge, of the UK Independence Party, moved towards the stage. He was the smiley poster boy for the YES vote. Fleet Street quickly nicknamed the party the Dumbass Demobrats after Nigel’s public tirade about fishmongers being too stupid to know what they were voting for and that anyone of non-Anglo-Saxon ancestor should all go home and get real jobs anyway. When it was pointed out that his own ancestors were French, he changed that to anyone who could not trace their roots back to the Roman invasions, which basically included everyone living on the Isle today. The party finally settled for anyone who didn’t look like them (UK white) or talk like them (UK shite) had to leave.

The UKIP (short for “UK Idiots Personified”) Brain Bank that devised the LEAVE campaign strategy had determined early on that reality, truth, statistics and discussing anything related to the Brexit vote was a waste of time. Instead they issued three statements:

  1. Brexit is located in the immigrant slums of Great Britain.

  2. Brexit is the name of the Muslim and/or Black neighbors living next door to you and the EU just want them to eat your brains.

  3. No, you smell like a rose. Now get out and vote YES.

Nigel strode confidently towards the platform, leaped over the table in a single bound and landed on the chair on the extreme left with a loud bang as it tipped over and he was left sprawling on the floor. He quickly jumped back up and with a big toothy smile announced, “I meant to do that”, and then took his place at the table.

The Chair of the meeting, Mike Maloney, joined the trio on stage waddling to the podium, behind which a step had been added. If a giant bowling ball had legs and arms, it would be called Mike Maloney. Mike was no more than 5 foot 2 inches tall and his waist seemed to extend as far as his height. With an almost bald head, black suit, shirt and tie, the bowling ball similarity was difficult to miss. He stood to address the meeting leaning forward to speak into the microphone.

“Ahem. Ahem. Could everyone please settle down. Can everyone hear me okay?”

A voice called out from the back of the room with a distinctly Irish accent, “Maybe you could stand up too so that everybody can see you.” The crowd roared with laughter but eventually did quiet down.

“After 42 months of careful deliberation, The Royal Commission for Stupid Mistakes and Should We Have a Brexit Do-over is now ready to release their much anticipated report and recommendations. The Chair of the Commission, Marie Cheri, will make a brief statement after which all party leaders are ready to answer your questions.

Marie, a cheerful and out-going woman of Scottish ancestor whose slim 6-foot frame amply filled her tight silk red dress, moved to the podium pushing the step out of her way with her foot in the process. Her 30-minute speech regaled the crowd with stories of history, gala, ceremony and royal weddings. As she closed her speech with the summary of what would follow, the summarized findings, in point form, appeared on the enlarged projector screen behind her:

  1. There will be a do-over vote. (Simultaneous cheers and boos drowned out the speaker momentarily.)

  2. The use of the word “Brexit” will be banned and all references to the new referendum will be only able to use the word “Briend”, a combination of the words “blend” and “friend” emphasizing the idea of harmony, sympatico, loyalty and friendship. (More jeers and booing)

  3. There will be 42 parts to the question, including sub-questions, categorizations, IQ intelligence testing and racial profiling and all voters will be required to attend both the STAY and the LEAVE training classes before being eligible to cast their ballots. (Total stunned silence.)

  4. All training and advertising material during the campaign will have to be vetted and approved by the Truth and Fact Accuracy Ministry, before publication either in print, online or through any other medium, including bathroom graffiti and skywriting. (Stunned mouth-open silence.)

  5. Penalties for violation of the guidelines will include hefty fines and even possible imprisonment under The Truth and Nothing but the Truth Referendum Legislation, recently passed by Parliament.

As she finished her summary, the lights dimmed and a full orchestra appeared as a curtain behind the stage was raised. Music swelled and a single spotlight focused on Marie as she broke into a full, passionate rendition of the Dionne Warwick song, “That’s what friends are for.” The audience were completely transformed into a swaying throng with cellphones raised lighting the large auditorium like a swarm of fireflies in an indoor arborarium.

When the music had faded and the lights came back up, the audience grew quiet again until the voice in the back shouted, “With tits like yours, I’d like to show you my little friend.” Again raucous laughter filled the hall as a blushing Marie Cheri sat back down. Lewd comments followed by gales of laughter continued for several minutes.

Maloney grabbed the microphone and then asked, “Are we done now?”

Voice in the back responded, “Don’t know. My other little friends all want their turn.” The crowd was descending into pandemonium.

“Order. Order. Are there any questions about Briend?”

The noise continued, and then several scuffles broke out. On stage, the party leaders were showing growing frustration and fear. The situation was turning ugly. Security agents began ushering the leaders off stage towards a side door exit when one of the audience members leapt on stage, grabbed a microphone and pointing at the retreating politicians he shouted: “I wouldn’t send my dog across the road to piss on you if you were all on fire.”

The audience was shocked. Everything became still. Dead silence filled the still room.

Nigel calmly leapt back on stage, grabbed the microphone back from the protester and replied, "That is the difference between me and you, sir. I would send my dog over to piss on all of you whether or not you were on fire!", then smiled broadly at the audience looking for approval.

The audience responded with a combination of shouting, laughing, cheering, applauding, and fighting. Chairs were beginning to fly. The more quarrelsome individuals were restrained by burly security personnel, and hustled out to waiting prison buses.

In the courtyard, ambulances and idle attendants waited to one side for their turns. Firefighters posed by their firetrucks talking to the pretty young woman fascinated by their muscles and cheery smiles, posing for selfies. They would wait until the police decided if the water cannons were necessary. TV crews jockeyed for positions trying to get the mayhem in their background shots with multiple news helicopters swooping in and out above to get better coverage.

Meanwhile, the Commission members managed to make their way back to their limousines protected by a cordon of riot police wielding plastic-shields to protect them. Within a few minutes all had departed in a convoy of protection with flashing police lights and sirens screaming their reckless progress through the streets as they all sped away towards Cork Airport.

Nigel relaxed in the plush deep leather seat of his limousine sipping his iced martini, stirred not shaken, prepared by his butler, Obsequious, sitting opposite. Obee, as he nicknamed him, never forgot the three olives.

“Mission accomplished,” Nigel gloated.

“Jolly good show, sir,” Obee responded. “Would you like another one?”

Nigel nodded as he thought to himself, everything is working out just as I planned.

================================

Nigel was beginning to feel that working with the idiots on President Donald Trump’s “Quebexit” campaign to separate Quebec from Canada was worse than herding free-range rats in a crowded shopping mall. There was no united vision, no focus. His expertise was never consulted. Everyone ran away whenever they saw them. No one on the campaign even spoke French. They thought Nigel did because of his last name.

The luxury of his 10th floor apartment in the historic pre-war co-op building located at 1010 Fifth Avenue in New York City could not dispel his despair. It was impossible to get a decent cup of tea anywhere. Fish and chips were another story. The batter was always too crispy and not greasy enough. They served it in these annoying plastic containers with recycled-plastic forks. The miniscule pieces of fish inside tasted like salted shoe-leather. Nigel missed the taste of newspapers flavouring his favorite dish, and of course Britain itself.

But England did not miss Nigel. In a special act of Parliament, Nigel’s UK citizenship was revoked and his British passport canceled since he was now an American citizen anyway. On the day that a much humiliated and chastised Britain rejoined the EU, the Queen declared Nigel a “persona horribilis” and “persona non-grata”, which were the re-joining preconditions of the EU. He was prohibited from being on any UK or EU fly-over flights to other destinations as well.

In her New Year’s message, the Queen reviewed the events of the past few years with the optimism and hope of new beginnings, and a new royal fudge. Stamped into every piece, sold to help replenish the depleted Royal coffers, was the Royal crest along with the two simple words:

"DON'T PANIC!"

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