I fucking swear to god, the next Union Flag I see I will douse in gasoline and burn, like some kind of agitated Iranian. The Bear has the damn things everywhere, of course, and indeed some customers have been asking if we’re operating as some kind of BNP recruitment centre. It’s not just at work, either: when in Tesco’s earlier, I saw a box of Cadbury’s Chocolate Fingers emblazoned with the bloody technicolour dishcloth.
I am aware that it’s all in honour of the pleasant old German lady who’s been occupying Buckingham Palace for sixty years. I’ve been doing my best to blithely ignore it all, putting the thought of a four-day bank holiday weekend firmly out of my mind. This has become increasingly difficult. A small child wearing a plastic Union Jack trilby cannonballed into me earlier, singing what I assume was supposed to be “God Save the Queen”, if atonally keening that phrase over and over again with no reference to the actual tune does indeed count as such. The urge to strangle it with the bunting it was trailing behind itself was overwhelming.
Even though I find the ubiquity of the British flag (and that dreadful Diamond Jubilee logo) to be remarkably unBritish, it is not this that irritates me. Nor is it the programme of (non-)events that irritates me: if the nation wishes to spend its money organising street parties in order to eat sponge cake and damp sandwiches with people they would never even dream of conversing with on any other day of the year, that is entirely up to them. If Sir Paul McCartney, JLS, Jessie J and other acts who tick all the appropriate minority checkboxes want to bawl their way through forgettable “hits” in front of Buck House, good luck to them. If floating down the Thames in a flotilla of dinghies seems to you to be the ideal way to fête Her Maj, good on you (do be careful, though, you might float all the way out of London: be warned that “official” celebrations outside the capital are strictly forbidden.)
No, what irritates me is that rather than having any time off at all, I shall instead be doing fifty-two hours on shift over the four days. I hope it fucking rains.
1) Current fashion, and the reticence of many “Yummy Mummies” to subject their darling sons to regular haircuts, has led to a veritable host of prepubescant children of ambiguous gender. Frequently, one can only be sure that the child in question is female if it is wearing a skirt.
2) Yes, I know it was designed by a six year old. I still think it’s bloody tacky. The Canadian and Australian Jubilee emblems are far more restrained and tasteful.