Today is Saint George’s Day, and all around the world, Englishmen and women are gathering to celebrate their proud cultural heritage. Cue many pints of ale, and the traditional St. George’s Day festivities –
- Re-watching the 1966 World Cup Final – Everyone must say “They think it’s all over – it is now!” at the appropriate moment. Extra kudos can be earned by wearing a Bobby Charlton comb-over wig, or by going to a foreign country en masse, getting blind drunk and fighting with the locals.
- Voting Tory – Two children are chosen, and each must make a speech before the other guests. One is dressed in fine clothes and must talk with a plummy accent of traditional values, the monarchy and a distrust of foreigners. The other is dressed in rags and must mumble about the workers, the welfare state and the Colonies (AKA Scotland, Wales and Ireland) in a northern accent. Then a mock ballot is held, and the loser is ceremonially beaten.
- Saluting George Best – One person (the “George Best”) must drink alcohol until they pass out. Bizarrely, they are then saluted as a hero as they are stretchered into the ambulance.
- A Minute’s Silence for the Queen – The Queen is a German enchantress who has somehow managed to bewitch the English into believing that she is more than human. They give her not only money, but even the lives of their sons. She represents nothing that is progressive, equal or sane, yet grown Englishmen will still weep over their Christmas dinners as she reads a speech written by someone else, without any emotion or theatrical flair.
- Parading the “Frenchman” – Over the preceding weeks, the children (with considerable help from the adults) will have constructed an effigy called a “Frenchman”. At the end of the day, this effigy is paraded around the group, either in a wheelbarrow or simply dragged by the arms. All must hold their noses as though the smell was unbearable. Finally, the Frenchman is set upon by the children, who tear it limb from limb as the adults chant “Agincourt! Agincourt!”
When the fun is over, what else is there to do but to all sit down for the traditional English meal – Chicken Tikka Masala.