Welcome to Declassified, a weekly comedy column.
Don’t, repeat, don’t mess with Emmanuel Macron’s balls. In fact, scratch that, mess with his balls because he doesn’t care.
The French president has had a (still) difficult week, under pressure to explain his past support for Uber’s lobbying efforts in France, after revelations of privileged exchanges with the American carpooling company when he was minister of the economy in 2015.
Responding to the revelations, the Elysee Palace said in a bland statement that Macron’s role “naturally led him to meet and interact with many companies engaged in the radical shift that has taken place over these years in the service sector”. But speaking to reporters during a visit to a factory in the French Alps, Macron used much stronger language, saying he would repeat his actions “again, tomorrow and the day after tomorrow” – which sounds like the name of a Bond movie (more on that later). Macron also used the phrase “It touches me one without moving the other.”
Literal translation: “He [the criticism] touch one of them [his balls] without pushing the other [ball].”
Actual translation: “I don’t care what you say about me.”
As with so many Macronisms, the phrase was borrowed from someone else, in this case Jacques Chirac, a man who isn’t afraid to, uh, expose his balls.
You know who else isn’t short in the ball department? James Bond. And it looks like the producers of the Bond films may call off the search for a replacement for Daniel Craig. Who was chosen? Is it Régé-Jean Page? No. Idris Elba? Oh no. Lashana Lynch? Still wrong. It’s Charles Michel who already has a turtleneck and can now get a super secure bunker at Council Headquarters from which to conduct some cool spy business (or take a nap).
Yes, the EU plans to spend €8m on an isolation cage that can hold up to 100 people to ‘mitigate the risk of exploiting compromising fumes’, according to an EU memo outlining the project and seen by EUobserver. Also, wasn’t Compromising Emanations the name of a Bond girl?
The new facility would also provide an “appropriate level of comfort for VIPs”. But what is an appropriate level of comfort, and do all VIPs have the same need for comfort? Think of the former VIPs who spent a lot of time on the Council: Angela Merkel would probably have contented herself with a bowl of her favorite potato soup and a chair, while Silvio Berlusconi would have demanded… well, to other stuff.
“Exclusive footage from the new season of ‘Lost’.”
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Last week, we gave you this picture:
Thanks for all the entries. Here’s the best of our mailbag – there’s no price other than the gift of laughter, which I think we can all agree is far more valuable than money or booze.
“If only I had a stable legislative majority like you Europeans”, by Joel Horowitz.
Paul Dalison is POLITICS‘s publisher of slot machine news.