Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Put-in Hot Water

So the Kremlin has announced that any suggestion that it may have been involved in the poisoning of former KGB man Alexander Litvinenko as "sheer nonsense". I'm not saying too much about this. However, I hear in other news that the Pope has become a Muslim and a bear was seen in B&Q recently buying a lavatory.

Monday, November 20, 2006

PICT Logic

If there is one organisation in Parliament that will cause every single person stress it has to be our friends in the Parliamentary Information and Communications Technology Department (commonly known as PICT). Their inablility to solve the most basic computer problem defies belief, however, they have surpassed themselves just now. Lord Lucan's parliamentary outlook programme (the one that sends emails) went down just as he was to send an urgent email. As you do you ring the PICT helpdesk and after ten minutes of listening to Handel I finally got through to the engineer who informed me that this is affecting a number of people throughout the Palace but not to worry as they are about to send an email out informing people of this. Er...so you are going to send an email telling people their email isn't working. How are they going to read it? Oh, that's a point the chap at the other end of the phone tells me. PICT, bringing IT into the 16th century.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Barking MP's Iraq Comments

Margaret Hodge is alleged to have called the Iraq War Tony Blair's "big mistake in foreign affairs". The Barking MP (as in her constituency and not necessarily her state of mind) has denied making the comments but we only have to look back to the local elections in May to remind ourselves that she has a track record for foot in mouth comments. Remember, her endorsement of the BNP (if not click here). Looks like she may well be on the way out sooner rather than later. The government can't keep her in and while I imagine that there a number of other cabinet members with concerns over Iraq to say them outside of Cabinet Meetings under Chatham House rules is just plain stupid. Blair meanwhile is stuggling to find his own position untenable due to Iraq, the fact he took this country to war on a lie should have meant that he was shown the door ages ago.

Taylor Wages Web War

Matthew Taylor, Blair's outgoing policy chief, has express his concerns (as a citizen not a government spokesman) that the internet is fuelling a crisis in politics. He would like to see the web "solve problems" rather than just abuse politicians. In particular his rant was aimed at poor old bloggers like yours truly saying "It's basically blogs which are, generally speaking, hostile and, generally speaking, basically see their job as every day exposing how venal, stupid, mendacious politicians are. " Well in an act of the highest maturity Lord Lucan has a message for him. Matthew Taylor you are an idiot and as useful as Liberal Democrat in Parliament, now bugger off the hole from which you came you retromingent donkey.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Blogger Problems

I have noticed that sometimes when you load up this page that it doesn't show the most recent article. However, if you click refresh it will load it up. So, dear readers, that is the solution to your problems (all your problems). Also by loading the page twice you make this blog look hugely popular and boosts my ego.

What I Remember About Yesterday

"You were SMASHED last night ... I have never seen you so drunk (and clearly - I have seen you f*cked before). Hysterical". This little email arrived on my inbox this morning and is a pretty accurate description of my state last night. Despite a warning from family Lord Lucan proceeded to get hammered and isn't feel as bright eyed and bushy tailed as normal. The reason for such celebration, The State Opening of Parliament. Lord Lucan had a marvellous morning and managed to get a balcony view of proceedings, watching the arrivals of the carriages and the band playing. The band were excellent this year and had learnt a few new tunes which were very jazzy. The speech itself was short (normally it lasts for one pint this year I still had half left) but packed full of bills and not too much New-Labourisms (although we did have a better framework and customer advocacy snuck in there as well). Whether the government can deliver remains to be seen. The Queen is rumoured to have said that yesterday's proceedings were the best in 10 years. Hmm, that would have been Major's last State Opening as Prime Minister and this was Blair's last as PM, I wonder whether there is a connection there?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Drinking Update

Lord Lucan has now polished off three glasses of champagne, two red wines and his now on his second pint. Don't expect anything else from this blog till tomorrow. This has taken five minutes to write, I'm clearly struggling. Right, where's my beer?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Lord Lucan Is On The Booze

No more postings today as I'm a very busy man. By the time I get round to blogging tomorrow I hope to be so drunk that I can't type so don't expect anything tomorrow and if anything does appear don't expect it to make sense. A run down of tomorrows State Opening and Pomp and Circumstance will be written up on Thursday (provided the hangover isn't too bad).

Number 1 - Grease

Firstly, apologies to Pookie, who pleaded that this not be number 1 but I'd decided what was going to get the top spot before you begged and Grease got it and no amount of groveling was going to change that. So, John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John hit the top of the chart with what is an amazing musical. The transportation back to the 1950s American High School makes me always want to be a pupil of Rydell High everytime I watch this. I sing along to the songs and have been known to do the odd Grease number at a karaoke. Intrestingly, this film was produced by Robert Stigwood who also made the BeeGees the band they are and now lives on the Isle of Wight. Great songs included in this musical are Summer Nights, Grease Lightning, You're The One That I want, Look at Me I'm Sandra Dee. All great fun. Franki Valli (he of Four Seasons fame) sang the theme. Oh, I could go on about this musical but its legacy and huge love (except for Pookie) clearly makes this number 1 by a mile. Channel 4's Top 100 musicals also rated it number 1, so I'm just giving that poll the seal of approval. Grease truly is the word.

Number 2 - Blues Brothers

The Blues Brothers were a band originally doing sketches on Saturday Night Live. Howver, this was tranformed into a full length movie in 1980 which was brilliant. John Belushi and Dan Ackroyd were the Jake and Elwood Blues, two men who with their band, are on a mission from God. They are to save the orphange where they grew up. However, nothing is straight forward with these two as they make enemies of the American Nazi Party and a Country and Western band called The Good Old Boys. However, their greatest foe is the Illonis State Police and the Chicago City Police. This results in some amazing car chases and held the record for the most cars wrecked in a film (beaten by its own sequel). Cameo roles were from James Brown, Aretha Fanklin, John Lee Hooker, Cab Calloway, Ray Charles and Twiggy. There are genuinely funny moments which despite having watched this film countless times I will still laugh out loud. Then there is the music which is just toe tappingly brilliant. Put simply a fantastic musical.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Number 3 - Mary Poppins

Step forward Dick Van Dyke with your shockingly awful Cockney accent. Yes, number 3 is Mary Poppins. Based on the book this 1964 Disney film starred Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins and more memorably Dick Van Dyke as Bert the cockney jack of all trades with that voice. Mrs Banks with her suffergette campaigning, Mr Banks with his foul moods (until of course he comes across Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious). A charming musical, much like Oliver! but slightly better and the use of animation on top of real cinema is quite genius for a film of its time. Loving this film.

Back to Westminster - A PC Serjeant

A quick break from all the song and dance of musicals as somebody has sent me a couple of wonderful photos. As everyone has buggered off the Serjeant at Arms has managed to check that his annunciator service works properly and on Friday afternoon ran a few tests. In order to do this he made up a name, with the SAA department as imaginative as ever they gave their fantasy MP the name of Mr. Test, here's the piccy:
This would be all well and good had it not been for a bit of PC (Political Correctness in this case rather than Police Constable or Personal Computer) madness. The Serjeant then paniced that would be seen as sexist. He knew it would be wrong to assume that a fantasy MP was a man, that it would be right to promote more women in Parliament. So just to even the balance just after Mr. Test there was a second fantasy MP, yes it was Miss. Test:
That Serjeant at Arms, he's just a crazy kid.

Number 4 -Oliver!

I must say once I had finished compiling my list of top 10 musicals it took me rather by surprise that Oliver! only came in at number 4. Many a drunken night has been spent by me singing Oom-Pah-Pah and I'd do anything. Here is a lovely musical though with good funtime songs and great sets. Mark Lester played the part of Oliver and never really did much after that and Jack Wyld got the part of the Artful Dodger but he then went on to drink excessively and sadly died earlier this year. This musical does bring back old memories, like Bugsy Malone, of family Christmases but this has toe tapping melodies that one can hum all day. It also won 6 Academy Awards.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Number 5 - Guys and Dolls

When you have Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra in your film, you know that it is destined to be a hit and indeed this is a great film. Made in 1955 this is definitely a golden oldie. Sky Masterson (Brando) is an illegal gambler who falls for the lovely Salvation Army worker Sarah Brown (Jean Simmons), with the two being complete opposites this is a funtime story. You also get hit song after hit song such as A bushel and a peck, Luck be a lady tonight and Sit down you're rocking the boat. I simply adore this film and it brings back fond memories when I was in a stage version of this musical, no starring role for me, just a member of the chorus. but it was great.

Number 6 - West Side Story

This is a truly revolutionary musical. Based on the book by Arthur Laurents, Leonard Bernsiten worte the music for this original stage musical which was made into a film in 1961 starring Natalie Wood. However, this film did to musicals what Shakespeare did to English literature. It reset the mould. Previously musicals had all been rather limp wristed affairs with standard tunes such as Oklahoma! and Showboat. Bernstien set the musical in the tough streets of the city rather than the rolling fields of rural USA. The dark side of the story was a lot darker than it had been before. Then there was the music. As I had said the music was all rather happy and standard rhythms previously. Bernstien changed this. Songs such as the Tonight Ensemble were rough and tough. America sung by the girls made great use of triplets in the score that hadn't been done before. There were a few traditional songs such as I Feel Pretty. However, the frequent use of the minor key in the musical just turned the musical on its head. It should never be underestimated how much this musical did for many of the musicals in the future and therefore has to be a top ten. Oh and it won 11 Oscars, so it can't be bad.

Number 7 - Cabaret

For those of you confused as to what is going on as Parliament is not sitting I have decided to do something alternative being my Top 10 Musicals. Why? Because I want to. Anyway, number 7, come join the Cabaret! This had to go in the top ten with great show tunes and Liza Minelli. It also has a historic backdrop with the rise of the Nazis. Again good tunes and brilliant costumes.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Number 8 - The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Four reasons for this 1975 film being in the top ten:

1. Susan Sarandon
2. The wierd and wonderful costumes
3. Richard O'Brien (he of Crystal Maze fame)
4. The Time Warp

and you get Meatloaf as well.

Number 9 - Bugsy Malone

An old gangster musical with a twist, instead of actors you get kids. Instead of guns, bullets and death you get cake. This 1976 movie also has a very young Jodie Foster as Tallulah. A fantastic list of characters including Fat Sam, Dandy Dan, Cagey Joe and Sanke Eyes. Catchy tunes as well including "Fat Sam's Grand Slam", "My name is Tallulah" and "So You Want to be a Boxer". There is great humour in it and I love that the bakery which supplied the cakes gets a special thank you in the credits. This makes the top 10 as it brings back memories of numerous Christmases watching the the family. Peachy.

Number 10 - Blues Brothers 2000

Nowhere near as good as the original but makes up in good links to the original Blues Brothers ("They broke my watch") and by a sensational list of cameo roles (incl. Aretha Franklin and James Brown). Of course there is the music, great blues music frequently through the film as well as a bit of gospel and bluegrass. The absense of John Belushi is notable and John Goodman does a fair effort but his character of Mighty Mack McTeer will never come close to Jake Blues. Dan Ackroyd is good and it is great to the full Blues Brothers Band back (Alan "Mr Fabulous" Rubin, Steve "The Colonel" Cropper, Donald "Duck" Dunn, Willy "Too Big" Hall, Tom "Bones" Malone, "Blue" Lou Marini, Matt "Guitar" Murphy and Murphy Dunne). However, what makes this film into the top 10 is the Louisina Gator Boys. The line up of this band at the end is incredible and shows the influence that the first film had. Stars include Issac Hayes, Dr. John, B.B. King and Eric Clapton. This is a film that has made the top 10 through legacy rather than as a film of its own merit, having said that it is enjoyable. The notable star of the show is J. Evan Bonifant who aged 13 plays a fantastic Buster Blues.

And Now For Something Completely Different

With everyone buggered off from Westminster Lord Lucan maybe struggling for news. Therefore I am going to do something completely different. However, should news come up of an event at Westminster Lord Lucan will be reporting it. In the the meantime keep watching for.....Lord Lucan's Top 10 Cinematic Musicals. Between now and Tuesday evening (excluding the weekend as I have better things to do) I will at random times be posting one of my top 10 musicals. So watch this space. However, first an apology to Monty Python on two counts. One, apologies for stealing one of their catchphrases for the headline to this article. Two, for them not being in the top 10. I couldn't quite class any of their films as musicals there just aren't enough songs. However, the songs they did do were brilliant. A personal favourite being "Every Sperm is Sacred" from The Meaning of Life and every whistler's pick "Always look on the bright side of life" from The Life of Brian. There was also "Camelot" from The Quest for the Holy Grail which in the DVD special features has a version done in lego. Genius. A still of which is shown below...

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Silly Names and French

Lord Lucan has just returned from his seat in the House of Lords Chamber watching the bizzare events of Prorogation. Hat doffing at scrums for seats gallore. The galleries were packed as well. Tony Blair showed scant regard for constitutional matters by not attending, as did David "Dave" Cameron (Prorogation is arguably the oldest ceremony held in Parliament). Black Rod went to collect the Commons where I hear upon knocking on the door one MP (prime suspect being a Mr. D. Skinner) shouted "it's the Jehova Witnesses". Before trooping back with the Speaker and Peter Grant-Peterkin and a tow of MPs. Then the commissioners' names were announced and much mirth when "Sir Thomas Galbraith Lord Strathclyde" was called. So with him and the Serjeant at Arms there was a feast of silly names followed by a bit of French when after each bill the clerk called out "La reine le veut" (The Queen wishes it). Then a speech from the Queen which had an astonishing likeness to New Labour speak. In summary a strange but rather amusing and historic event. Also wasn't it odd that the Houses prorogued just before PMQs?

Date For Your Diary


Better Today

Still not quite right but a huge improvement on yesterday. Furthermore, Lord Lucan has a MASSIVE exclusive (so massive that "massive" has to be written in capital letters) which I will let you all in on at about 10.00am today.

Incidently, may I thank all those who commented on the post reporting that I was ill, none of whom said "Get Well Soon". Bastards.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Expect no further posts as am feeling like death. Will be back when recovered.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Quote for the Day

I am currently reading Philip Cowley's The Rebels. Which is an in depth analysis of how Blair mislaid his majority. An excellent read by all accounts if you like your books with a political edge. This little extract on voting against the whip brought a smile to my face whilst on a long train journey last night I'd share it with you. "Rebelling for the first time is routinely compared to a loss of virginity. The comparison's not perfect (not least because each division in the House of Commons takes between twelve and fifteen minutes".

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Jordan To Visit Parliament

Readers maybe interested to know that Jordan is to visit Parliament on Tuesday. Male readers may be disappointed to know that it is the King and Queen of the state of Jordan and not the large chested model.

How to Annoy The Serjeant

The return of September sittings was debated yesterday after PMQs. Lord Lucan hears that Palace Authorities were getting a bit hot under the collar that the motion would be passed. Casting ones mind back to the last time these sittings took place one can see why. The place was a bomb site. In particular the Committee Corridor had its carpet up and MPs and their guests were joined by builders in high visability jackets. Furniture from rooms in the process were dumped in any available corridor space. Health and Safety would have shut the building down if they had seen it as it was a death trap. So when the idea of a return to September sittings came round again the powers were slightly worried. Although it seemed that MPs did not want them to return on the whole there was always a slim chance. It would have meant that the many ongoing works on the Parliamentary Estate would have had to stop. The place made respectable and added to all this there would be those pesky MPs about and a cost to. Martin Slater in his speech put the cost last time at £2.5m. Anyway, after much debate the House of Commons divided and the Palace Authorities breathed a sigh of relief as September sittings were banished to the realms of history by 354 to 122. However, one can be assured that the 122 MPs who trooped down the aye lobby are off the Serjeant at Arms' Christmas Card list and shouldn't be expecting any favours for a while. For a list of those blacklisted MPs click here

Speaker Needs to be Healed

Speaker Martin is clearly ga-ga. PMQs yesterday and his interuption was just stupid and David "Dave" Cameron made him look a bit silly. Although use of the word "honestly" was certainly a no-no. The mumblings are growing and he hasn't been the best of Speakers since the word go such examples are speaking in favour of Government legislation relating to benefits for asylum seakers when David Blunket was Home Secretary and performance has been worse since he returned from sickness. It is surely time for him to step down. However, who will succeed? My choice has to be Sylvia Heal (pictured), Deputy Speaker and MP for Halesowen and Rowley Regis. A person who when in the Chair brings a calming and pleasant air to the Chamber, where in a place of testoserone and bullishness the pleasing tones of Mrs. Heal can ease one into a more straight headed mood. When Otis Ferry and his Merry Men broke into the Chamber was as cool as a cat as the chaos unfolded. So vote Heal, that's what I say.