Last night, at the GQ Men of the Year awards, Grime MC Stormzy won the Copper Dog Whisky Solo Artist of the Year award. He received it from Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, and in his acceptance speech made reference to the Prime Minister. Sadly, the ability of one attendee to both comprehend what was being said, and show a little humility when getting it wrong, failed to keep abreast of events.
Behold the rictus grin of the flannelled fool
As the Guardian reported, “Grime MC Stormzy has expressed his dismay at Theresa May, calling her a ‘paigon’ at the GQ men of the year awards … The epithet is popular among black Londoners and generally used to describe untrustworthy individuals”. However, and here we encounter a significantly sized however, not all present understood the term.
“The word confused some in the audience though, with the Telegraph quoting Stormzy as calling the prime minister a ‘pagan’ and Alastair Campbell tweeting that he’d said ‘pig’. Campbell later apologised, saying it was ‘good to learn new words’”. But although Big Al said sorry, one who thought Stormzy had said “pig” did not.
Who might that have been? As if you need to ask: step forward the odious flannelled fool Master Harry Cole, formerly tame gofer to the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines at the Guido Fawkes blog, and now pretending to be a real journalist, having been made the alleged “Westminster Correspondent” for the Murdoch Sun.
Master Cole told his Twitter followers “Corbyn has turned up at GQ Man of the Year … to present an award to Stormzy … who just called Theresa May a pig. Yeah you read that right”. Wow! A shock horror leftie bashing Sun exclusive was there for the asking, and it would have his name on the by-line! But there was a teensy problem.
As time elapsed, it became clear that Stormzy had not said “pig”. The Super Soaraway Cole exclusive was by now receding into the distance. Still he dug his heels in. “Jury out on this one. People in room sat [sic] pig, Twitter says pagan?” They clearly don’t teach this sort of thing at Tonbridge School, despite the exorbitant fees.
And then it became clear that it wasn’t “pagan”, and certainly not “pig”. Cole’s own paper, the Sun, although managing several digs at Corbyn, not least for wearing the wrong colour tie, correctly deduced that the word was “paigon”. Mail Online concurred. And later, the Evening Standard did the same. So did many other media outlets.
On top of that, Big Al had said sorry. So was Master Cole going to do likewise? But you know the answer: he isn’t that grown-up yet. So all that his Twitter followers got was a sulky response to Dan Barker’s “paigon” confirmation. “agreed... having listened on laptop rather than phone - it wasn't pig, despite what those in the room said. Deleted tweet”. And just for good measure, he blamed others in the room.
All of which confirms what had gone before, and for too many years to mention: being an obscenely overpaid Sun correspondent means never having to say you’re sorry.