Of course, it’s been a shaky week. Since the bonkers result of the EU membership referendum it’s been a tsunami of news, my head barely bobbing to the surface for a gasp of air before the next revelation has hit me in the face like a free-floating car.
The economy is similarly adrift and in danger of being swept out somewhere into the middle of the Atlantic ocean, and politics has taken all leave of what little sense it might have had remaining. So close to the beginning of it all it’s still difficult to guess whether this is the new normal, or whether it will settle down in a month and we’ll all wonder why we were being so hysterical.
Still, the latest thing to terrify me is the fact that we have come so close to the prospect of the country being run by a man who looks like the lovechild of a scarecrow and a Vileda super mop. It’s like the doomsday clock was suddenly shifted to 11.59pm. As Johnson gave his announcement, the entire country let out half a breath (the other half still being held for the fact that Gove had announced a run for the leadership a few hours before), safe in the knowledge that it was a little bit safer.
Nevertheless, the Boris idea was a solid one right up until it wasn’t. Whatever went on behind the scenes to convince Michael Gove that he should run, and Boris Johnson that he shouldn’t - and these will no doubt emerge in the fullness of time - the fuzzy-headed posho was still the frontrunner in the Conservative leadership campaign, and talked about almost in default terms as becoming the next prime minister.
Frankly it scares to me to think how Johnson’s form of calculated buffoonery might have become accepted to the point that its time has come. How could anyone think that his persona - cynically crafted over years - would be a good one for a prime minister? How can someone chart a path from polemic right-wing journalist to leader of a major world economy* via TV comedy quiz show and the public hardly bats an eyelid? If we’re really going to go down that route, Hugh Grant would be a much better choice.
*I guess now arguable at this point in time