Opinion piece: Brexit Day and the march to oblivion

As the end dawns near, we enter the reflective final hours of culling our 47-year membership to the European Union. Cutting ties with the EU has been about as easy as cancelling a membership for Audible, a process which took me seven months. Still, my record-breaking cancellation of unity with free audio novella has been a lot easier than the disaster of a three year negotiating period that Britain have found themselves facing with the members of the European Union.  

To mark the special occasion, Prime Minister de Pffefel Johnson and his main campaign players gathered themselves at Sunderland to mark the special occasion with a special cabinet meeting. The equivalent of marking your wedding anniversary with a novelty card and a Savers bottle of champagne, the Tories marched into the Glass Centre one at a time. It’s quite entertaining having Boris Johnson and his cabal of nuisance creating, rich, Bullingdon boys appearing in the heart of Sunderland. I was sort of hoping to see Boris wrangled out of his car by Noel Edmonds, who would force him to wear a Mr. Blobby outfit. Shamefully, no such thing happened, and my dream of seeing Johnson dressed as the only physical entity that looks funnier than him is crushed once more.  

Meeting at The Glass Centre under the guise of a cabinet meeting when in fact they’re actually all wanting to give the frankly enjoyable jacket potatoes a try, Johnson and his cabinet are seen escaping into the Sunderland Art Exhibit in a strangely similar fashion to the scene in Toy Story 2 when the toys try and cross the road disguised as traffic cones. There was something quite ominous about seeing the MPs lingering around the entrance, slowly revealing themselves like Love Island contestants, yet even those that feature on Love Island are less contemptible than these suitably suited power-hungry villains. My colleagues were gathered at the window overlooking the glass centre, guessing on who was going to appear next, anticipating the arrival of just about anyone that looked contemptible. It was like guessing what was in the Christmas cracker, but every cracker was filled with disappointment, out of date jam and a singular, oversized playing card. 

We weren’t of course allowed access to the many famed faces of the cabinet, and my requests for an interview by re-enacting the famous gate pulling scene from The Eric and Andre Show did little to appease the government. It would’ve been quite nice to ask a few questions, mainly about how it felt to be in a part of the country that had been destroyed throughout the 1980s by Margaret Thatcher, a woman who divided the nation and crushed what little economic input the North had to offer. Johnson is no critic of Thatcher, his defending of “inevitable inequality” ringing similarly with the attitude of Thatcherism, a style of governing that lasted for twenty years. But Johnson managed to do something Thatcher failed to do for eleven years, and that was to trick the Northern wall into believing they could trust him to “Get Brexit done”. 

Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Images

A group of protesters stood outside yelling “Tory scum not welcome here”, but considering I’ve blasted my eardrums with numerous Pulp albums, it sounded much swearier than initially conceived. They’re fighting on the frontlines, defending me as I pop weak jokes about a catastrophe of a day. Brexit Day, as it has been aptly called, is the final day we will be residing in the European Union. As soon as the clock strikes 11pm, the party or pain begins for millions across the country. A sentiment that rings throughout today is that many of the people who voted for either leave or remain, have no idea what is going to happen next. What will happen to the economy? What in fact was the Brexit plan? Has the domination of the political spectrum been justified by Brexit tension? We’re in the exact same position that we found ourselves in on the 23rd June, 2016.  

There’s a strange feeling to the whole of Brexit Day, the initial founding’s of a wannabe national holiday for those that don’t find comfort in the idea of fleeing the country to France for a minibreak. As we speak, the channel tunnel is being bricked up, Nigel Farage is smuggling a few more packets of Italian antipasto into his wine cellar and Theresa May is, presumably, wondering “what if?” A shallow celebration of our ability to cut ties with twenty-seven countries all in one go, Brexit Day is more or less a celebration of what it is to be British. But what does it mean to be British anymore? We integrated with those aforementioned twenty-seven countries centuries before the EEC was even thought of. Years before the invention of the hilariously poor League of Nations, even in the years of discovering and colonising America, we still relied, warred and squabbled with our European allies. 

Having forgotten years upon years of history, we now find ourselves in the awkward predicament of ignoring countries that are only an ocean away. What our plans for post-Brexit Britain are, I really don’t know, but neither does anyone. Life will go on more or less as normal, but for the sake of this article I like to think I’ve inspired a fear that will have you gripped and terrified. Nothing all that terrible will happen, and we can take comfort and solace in the notion that the one and only country wanting a deal with us currently is China, who have already broken into your phone, and America, who have already broken into our bank.  

As the day comes to a close, it’s interesting to see how flustered and excited the Conservative cabinet members were to be leaving Sunderland. As they boarded the last Range Rover out of Saigon, the sky began to cloud, a grey paste signalling the final day of European unity. Coronavirus seems to have taken a backseat to the news of Boris Johnson marching us all into the unknown. The virus being dropped down the list of newsworthy stories faster than a light hearted comedy piece about a D-Lister celebrity breaking their arm. At least the virus made it into the country just before the necessary Visa applications are processed, meaning that the two individuals who contracted the illness in Newcastle are now the Patient-Zero members of the United Kingdom. It’s as if Europe have given us a parting gift, but that parting gift is something that will kill us all off rather rapidly. Happy Brexit Day, God save Queen Boris and his collection of royal, slobbering, virus ridden subjects. 

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