V dynamic strategy meeting. The challenge is clear: we must look more statesmanlike, whilst wearing Marlon Brando-style leather jackets. Jed is calling it ‘biker statesman chic’. He says Google executives have been doing it for years, there’s nothing to it. We must also find Dave some more budget accessories to wear following excellent coverage of his £1 belt in all the papers this weekend. I have been personally charged with this. Am being dispatched to the high street this lunchtime to find items that will appeal to Recession Strugglers, our key voter type in marginals. A nice pair of socks from Primark perhaps. Or a little man-bag canvas satchel from TopShop to carry his copy of the manifesto around in (when Mr letwin finally has the good grace to finish writing it!).
At least it will get me out of the office while all this terrible shouting is going on. Personally, I think it’s counterproductive to yell obscenities at someone of a nervous disposition before they go on a TV Chancellor debate, but there we are.
Everyone (who matters) is agreed — Gids was a triumph! He didn’t make a terrible mistake once! He didn’t squeak (too much), he didn’t go totally red and he didn’t let tears well up in his eyes when Mr Darling was mean to him. All credit must go to Sherwood, our lifestyle coach, who stepped in to stop Gary yelling and trained Gids to repeat the words ‘I am a ray of light’ whenever he feels like crying. We gave him a hero’s welcome when he came into the office this morning. Jed told him how brave he’d been and that he could take the rest of the week off to read positive affirmations. In any case, Ken’s got a lot to do sorting out the funding of the NICs reversal and he doesn’t like being crowded when he’s smoking cigars on the roof.
We have made an important decision. There isn’t time to make everyone like us before 6 May. Inexplicable as it is, voters do seem to be weird enough not to have fallen completely in love with us. So we are going to make a virtue of being disliked. We are to start briefing that Dave is planning to be as widely hated as Thatcher. Our Most Unlikable shadow ministers are to be pushed into the frontline to prove we mean business. Jed is calling it ‘biker bad-ass chic’. He says they’ve been doing it at Microsoft for years. Sherwood is fully on board. He’s been arguing for months that the time has come for us to unleash our ‘Inner Nastiness’ against the Forces Of Hell. Mr Grayling is so excited he can barely breathe. He says he wants a ‘motorcycle jacket’.
I knew I’d get the blame for this. I did what I was told to do. Now Jed is shouting at me for telling journalists that Dave’s ‘really horrid and mean and shouts all the time and no one likes him’. Apparently I was supposed to brief that we are all frightened of him in a good way. Oh dear.