A Matter of Millimetres

There are a number of perks to this job I’m doing. One of which is free food and drink at many opportunities, although there tends to be a very limited selection of it available if you’re attending something in Parliament. But the other is the kind of people you meet.

Today, I was very fortunate enough to hold on to my MP’s coattails and join him and his charity friends for a very brief photo opportunity with none other than the PM himself, Mr Tony Blair. This was very surreal. We were ushered in with speed as soon as we’d got the nod, as meanwhile various high profile government ministers rushed back and forward from the PM’s office, tucked deep in the House. I hastily set up the backdrop for the photos, which entailed walking within millimetres of the PM. He was a little smaller than I anticipated. I thought around six foot or 1.83m, but he was just a bit below that.

But suddenly I could see why this man had been such a successful politician. He turned on the charm, oozed charisma and sweet talked his way through the situation with top-notch small talk. I’m sure he’s a nice man, and it’s in his interests to be nice for such charity events, but it wasn’t really representative. It was all so very easy to forget the many reasons I seriously dislike everything he stands for. No wonder my MP wouldn’t ever dream of challenging him to an argument.

No sooner had I “met” him, we were being escorted out by Tony’s many cronies as he had a “very busy schedule”. So, as usual, you were made to feel like you were being really lucky to get the PM for the short glimpse you get. Still, the charity liked it, and it might give them some good promotional material. Crumbs from Tony’s table…

Otherwise, the job rumbles on, and things seem to be finally working themselves out. Indeed, even the local council have decided it’s time to send me a bill for council tax. Everything seems to be heading towards forming an eventual state of normality. Yet, that sounds such a bizarre concept… how can “normality” involve meeting the Prime Minister? I can’t help but feel that eventually, working this close to where many things in this country are decided and almost being isolated within that so-called Westminster bubble, you develop a very twisted sense of reality.

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