Guy Fawkes never thought his legacy would be like this
With the State Opening of Parliament comes that bastion of constitutional monarchy: absolutely whack tradition. It’s been a year since a Labour MP wielded a 5-foot silver object called a ceremonial mace, which is imbued with the authority of the Queen by some historical cathexis, and everyone in Parliament knew precisely what was going on, including the guard with a massive sword that had to restrain him.
Rise, then, for the fact that the Yeoman of the Guard begin each State Opening by glomping around the cellars of the House of Commons looking for bombs, because some guy called Guy Fawkes tried to do a number on the monarchy 414 (four hundred and fourteen) years ago. Their reward? Half a glass of port. Port glasses are already very small. This seems both incommensurate and appropriate: both an entirely insufficient reward for possibly putting one’s life on the line, and a fittingly absurd gesture for the most analogue piece of historical security in the country. Here’s a video of the boys in red heading off for their port, care of Royal Central, which is both a dedicated monarchical news hub and a real Twitter account.
The Yeoman of the Guard conducted a search of the cellars of the Palace of Westminster for gunpowder this morning ahead of Her Majesty’s arrival.— Royal Central (@RoyalCentral) December 19, 2019
They are rewarded with half a glass of port for their effort. pic.twitter.com/lsB7ilAyJO
And in other news...
- Chef Jason Atherton declared Nigella Lawson “full of shit.” The world said: “no mate.”
- David Beckham’s favourite pie and mash shop is in Waltham Abbey.
- Quality piri-piri chicken, a flawless crab tart, and a restorative fried mortadella sandwich are just three of the best dishes Eater London’s writers ate this week.
- Labour MP Stephen Kinnock has put a milk frother on parliamentary expenses, but also thinks coffee bars are bad for politics. The coffee bars are bad...but the coffee, the coffee is very good.
- London pizza empire builder Pizza Pilgrims will open its 12th restaurant in Victoria, with an “immersive experience” taking in a wine cellar, a Parmesan corridor, and more. Outsize, extra, quasi-experiential Italian dining? Why didn’t anyone think of that before???
- Toy magnate Fisher Price has launched a charcuterie set for kids. [The Takeout]
- Good tweet:
I'd like to clear up one of the vicious rumours being put on my name by the trolls. Yes, I went to a London coffee bar once or twice in my youth. I didn't like it and I didn't inhale. I never went to one again.— Francisco Garcia (@Ffranciscodgf) December 19, 2019