‘Oh, it’s you!’ said the builder boyfriend to the Tory MP in his shooting jacket, as he made his way down the street handing out leaflets.
The BB was standing outside his builder’s yard in suburban south-west London where he enjoys a good argument at election time. During the referendum campaign, he fixed a placard to his roof declaring his support for Brexit. When the London lefties walked past visibly struggling with their gag reflex, he disgusted them further by bidding them good morning in a cheerful, courteous tone.
If they did stop to argue, they would soon regret it, as the BB is not to be argued with. He simply machine-guns you with facts.
What the Remoaners in his street hate most of all is his grasp of the detail. He has a razor-sharp mind, a photographic memory for figures and an in-depth understanding of historical events that would rival an Oxford don.
He engages the organic mohair-wearing vegans whose million pound homes surround his bashed-up old builder’s yard on a level that offends their preconceptions so deeply they are traumatised.
I’ve seen their faces. ‘Can’t you just be the ignorant working-class oik we want you to be and admit you don’t know anything about the EU?’ is what their expressions say.
The problem is, despite having no formal education, he knows more than they do. As soon as the Conservative MP saw him, he recoiled in horror. He has been on the end of it before.
‘Ah, now, I want a word with you,’ said the builder b, striding towards him. The MP clutched his leaflets to his exquisitely tailored tweeds in panic and stepped back as the BB, in paint-spattered jeans and steel toe-capped boots, approached him saying: ‘I want you to know that faced with the choice on the ballot paper, I would rather vote for an utter [insert insult, I can’t repeat the one he used] like you than end up with Corbyn in power.’
The Tory MP gasped a sigh of relief and gushed: ‘Oh thank you!’
Yes, welcome to the election where the MPs thank the oiks for insulting them.
Back in Surrey, most of what comes through our door at home is from the Lib Dems, boasting that they will cancel the referendum result. It’s obviously a vote winner in their minds and not at all shocking to me because I expect the Liberal Undemocrats to cancel democracy.
My theory of the opposite always being the case when it comes to self-appointed titles is proved right again. If you put democrat in your title it means you are the opposite of a democrat. If you put Labour in your title it means you are about the opposite of going to work. If you put Conservative? Well, it means you are nothing to do with conserving and everything to do with throwing our proud traditions down the toilet.
On that theme, the leaflet I found the most disturbing was the one from Sir Paul Beresford, Conservative MP for Mole Valley. I know Sir Paul to chat to. He’s a nice fellow. I know he’s a Remainer. I’m a grown-up. I can take it. It’s that or Corbyn so I was ready to put my X in his box.
When I got his leaflet through my door, however, I was flabbergasted. The fold-out A3-sized sheet was based on three issues: ‘1. Revitalise Our Towns. 2. Save Our Green Belt. 3. Fight Expansion at Gatwick.’ And then, at the end, a message from Sir Paul declared: Blah blah our NHS, blah blah more police, blah blah every school… And then two short sentences: ‘I also believe that the UK must leave the European Union in accordance with the referendum result of 2016. Ultimately, though, I do not believe that Brexit is the greatest issue of this election.’
Hello? Do they think we are stupid? This election was only called because of Brexit. We wouldn’t be staring down the gun of a communist takeover if it hadn’t been for the parliamentary mess and delay that landed Boris with the only option of going to the country to try to get a bigger mandate.
So I rang Sir Paul’s office and asked: ‘Can you tell me why I’ve just got a leaflet through my door from you which hardly mentions Brexit?’ ‘Er, well,’ said the young man on the other end of the line, ‘we took the view that you will be hearing a lot about Brexit…’
‘Yes, because it’s the biggest issue in this election.’ ‘Oh yes, of course,’ he said. ‘So you don’t agree with your own leaflet, then, which says it’s not the biggest issue?’ ‘Er…’
And that is what counts for the best option. All things considered: vote Conservative.