Monday, 4 March 2013

Strictly Political Dancing

No new sketch this week- so irritated by last week's lack of interest from the Beeb- but much pleased at the response from my readership. And as one of my 'fans' says, 'keep your own voice'- so here is something I put together last October- hence not quite so topical! Worth a read nonetheless.

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Music: Strictly Come Dancing Theme

Bruce:            Please welcome our next couple to the dance floor, doing the Viennese Waltz David Cameron and his partner Nick Clegg!

Polite applause

Music: (in waltz time): If you don’t know me by now

Music fades down so we hear their conversation.

Nick:               David, you’re treading on my toes!

David:             No Nick, you’re treading on my toes!

Nick:               David, you’ve been treading on my toes constantly during this competition. I wonder if you actually know in which direction you are going!

David:             I’m going to the right!

Nick:               No! Here we need to go to the centre! (Huffs) There we go!

David:             And we will keep this centre position until … now (Huffs) Back in the correct direction now.

Nick:               We need to go the centre now! (Huffs)  For the vote on the green tax. And now to the right for the tuition fees. (Huffs)  And now a left for the vote on AV! (Huffs)

David:             And back to the right for the EU debate. (Huffs)

Music finishes

Bruce:            If you don’t know David by now Nick you’ll never … wait for it… you’ll never ever know him at all! (Polite groans) Bruno! Over to you first!

Bruno:            Nic-o-las! I am-a so sorry for-a you! If you had been-a in-a Italy you-a would-a have-a been-a completely going-a to-a the right!

Craig:             Daaarrrling! I couldn’t have agreed more! It seems to me Nick that you can’t decide if you need to direct to the left or to the right, and when you do one decides and the other goes elsewhere. Your footwork is all over the place, and David the timing of your decisions relates to events and not to the music!

Darcey:          Yah! Totally! You know! Whatever!

Craig:             A complete dis-ar-star!

Len:                Well it’s all very good looking very pretty isn’t it but I could see no direction, no style, no substance. Lots of fancy twirls and twists, but it’s not strictly dancing you know. No chance of a SEV-ERN between the four of us.

David:             Oh don’t bring that … (fades)

Friday, 1 March 2013

Swedish AAA Meatballs!

Another week, another no show of my scripts on Newsjack. There has been a lot of criticism directed at the programme for not really having unpublished writers; and in fact they admit as much themselves! Not always quality either! Judge for yourselves here: 

Well the BBC's loss is my readership's gain I suppose!

Personally I think this is one of the tightest pieces I have done. Enjoy

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AAA Rating Sketch
Justin:                          The major economic news this week was of course the downgrading of the UK’s credit rating from the blue chip AAA rating to the lesser AA1 rating, which probably translates to tea and biscuits in Cabinet meetings being bought from the essentials range rather than the luxury selection at Harrod’s. But on a more serious note, how does the UK get back to the top level of credit rating? Especially with a country like Sweden with a sixth of our population and natural resources that seem to be based around pine forests and elk farming holding the top rating. To help me answer these questions I have with me the economist Professor Anna Svensson of the University of Uppsala. Professor Svensson, welcome.
Anna:                           (In well-spoken but ever so slightly exaggerated Swedish accent) Justin (pause) Please call me Anna.
Justin:                          Thank you Anna. Now tell me on such limited natural resources, how does Sweden sustain one of the best standards of living in the Western world, and manage to fund full state pensions for all and allow for a full years maternity and paternity leave for new parents.
Anna:                           Well. (pause) Justin. (pause) You mention my country’s natural resources but omitted our supplies of iron ore, much of which is used to build those big, square cars which seem to be so enamoured of your middle classes. Our pine forests we use to supply much of Europe with self-assembly furniture named after Astrid Lindgren characters. And the elk; (pause) yes it is used in the food chain. Where do you think those Swedish meatballs come from?
Justin:                          Well at least it isn’t horse meat. But those are all based on sales. What about when the markets contract. You do have to import most of your fresh fruit and vegetables because of your poor soils and short growing seasons.
Anna:                           Ah! The English education system’s obsession with the Vikings. They didn’t wear horned helmets as you all think, but did come for food supplies. There may have been some accidental slaughtering and pillaging, but that was all securely invested. Can you imagine the compound interest since the eighth century?
Justin:                          So the strength of the Swedish economy is based upon the wealth stolen from Anglo-Saxon monasteries.
Anna:                           No! (pause) There is much more! (pause) For example, have you seen the cost of a pint of your English beer in a bar in Stockholm?
Justin:                          £12! £12! The most expensive Stag party I have ever attended!
Anna:                           Also the many millions of pounds that you spent on Sven-Goran Erikkson taking your English football team to a succession of quarter finals were invested immediately into our herring industry.
Justin:                          But surely one person’s cultural impact doesn’t secure an entire nation’s economic well-being.
Anna:                           Think again Justin! Have you read the Millennium Trilogy!
Justin:                          I have. Along with twenty million other people.
Anna:                           And no doubt you have heard the rumours of a fourth book on Stieg Larsson’s laptop which his girlfriend has in a safe.
Justin:                          I have. (pause) Where is this leading?
Anna:                           There are in fact another seventeen volumes in safe storage in the vaults of the Royal Bank. To be released at six monthly in times of dire economic need. The Girl Who Licked the Wombat’s Armpit. The Girl Who Played With Her Food. Not the most inspiring of titles and not his best work I am sure but the franchise effect will pay dividends. I myself am composing a book entitled Fifty Shades of Sven, in which a young girl is compelled to construct a Smorgasbord for every home game played by the national football team.
Justin:                          And if Mr Larsson’s work has lost its appeal?
Anna:                           Justin. I can imagine your younger self dancing to the music of our greatest cultural export, Abba!
Justin:                          I may in my youth have gyrated to Dancing Queen.
Anna:                           Like many people you probably believe that Agnetha Fältskog has been in self-imposed seclusion for the last thirty years. Whereas in fact she and the Norwegian one have been recording songs in secret for decades, in case our nation needs to bail out some lesser economies.  (pause) Such as your own.
Justin:                          I feel you have more to reveal to me.
Anna:                           Yes! If the world is on the brink of financial meltdown, we can call upon our brave dwarves and elves who have been mining under the Skanderna Mountains for two millennia, and have a supply of gold, rubies, emeralds and diamonds guarded by a fearsome dragon.
Justin:                          Now you are just being silly!
Anna:                           Justin (pause) that was just our famous Swedish sense of humour. We do have one other secret weapon though; known and loved by millions who has been securing our financial stability for nearly forty years.
Justin:                          And that would be?
Swedish Chef:            Bir-de-bir-de-birr-de-bir-de-birr-bup-bup-bup!
Justin:                          Professor Anna Svensson; thank you!