narcissism

Incredible Sulk morphs from green to yellow as he is bested by Bettel | John Crace | Politics

Exit the Incredible Sulk. It was bad enough getting owned on Twitter by the actor who played the Incredible Hulk – comparing yourself to a comic book hero with anger management issues was always asking for trouble when you’ve got form with the Camberwell police. Classic Dom.

But Boris Johnson’s day just got a whole lot worse when he was completely owned by about 50 unthreatening protesters – this was Luxembourg, where crime waves are measured in the number of people not paying parking fines – and Xavier Bettel, the country’s prime minister.

Faced with a handful of people shouting: “We don’t like you very much,” Johnson imploded under the weight of his own narcissism. The Incredible Bulk morphed from green to yellow and fled sobbing indoors. He’d been in some tricky situations before where the future of the world had been at risk from super-soldiers powered by gamma radiation. But nothing as dangerous as this.

He begged Bettel to move their joint press conference somewhere less noisy. Preferably somewhere no one would ask him any difficult questions. Bettel demurred. The lecterns were set up, the journalists were in place and he’d go ahead without him. Johnson was about to be humiliated by the second smallest country in the EU. Taking back control by losing control. Classic Dom.

To be fair, the Luxembourg trip had already turned sour in the lunchtime showdown with his arch-enemy, Jean-Claude “Thanos” Juncker. Thanos had tried to trick him into revealing his top secret Brexit plan. He’d even asked him to put it down in writing. In writing! What kind of fool did Thanos take him for? He might be green, but he wasn’t that green. So instead, the Bulk had palmed him off with some pifflepafflewifflewaffle. If he didn’t know what he was talking about then there was no way Thanos would.

It had been near mortal combat. The Bulk could tell he had landed some crushing blows by the disdain and irritation with which Thanos had described their meeting as almost entirely pointless because no new proposals had been put forward. And the killer blow had been the Bulk’s own statement saying he was aware time was running out and that the negotiators would soon be meeting on a daily basis.

Soon – there was no rush. He might be on day 26 of the 30 in which he had promised his other nemesis, Angela “the Leader” Merkel, an alternative to the Northern Ireland backstop, but his superpowers meant he wasn’t constrained by the quantum physics of the space-time continuum.

But even the Bulk had to admit he had been wrongfooted by Xavier “the Abomination” Bettel. No one could have expected a villain of the Abomination’s tiny stature to face down a few people – some even wearing sandals – waving placards that read: “Bog Off Boris” and shouting nasty things such as: “Go home liar.” Rather than cowering under a table – discretion was sometimes the better part of valour even for a superhero – the Abomination had taken his life in his hands and gone outside to talk to the media.


Luxembourg PM mocks Boris Johnson after PM skips press conference – video

The Abomination had begun in measured terms, sounding reasonable as he gestured to where Boris should have been. The Bulk had become the Sulk and been “empty-lecterned” on the world stage. He’d never live it down at the next Marvel Comics reunion. Then the Abomination began to turn really nasty as his exasperation channeled Brenda from Bristol. AKA Galactus. The Abomination had had enough. He was at his wits’ end. He was sick to death of the Sulk getting all worked up, going green and splitting his suits.

Hell, no one had ever expected the Sulk to keep to his diet and if he lost his temper and spilled the odd glass of wine then that was his own business. But what the Abomination couldn’t stand any more was the Sulk’s bullshit. Boris was the superhero without any superpowers. A figment of Dom’s imagination. A man without qualities. Someone so delusional, he actually imagined that people believed he had a workable Brexit plan.

So this was the Abomination’s moment to break the politician’s code. To quit the pretence and tell the truth. The Sulk was a charlatan. An imposter who had never really believed in Brexit anyway. The Joker whose music-hall act had long since stopped being funny. Brexit was an unmitigated disaster for everyone and the Sulk was wilfully playing with people’s futures to prolong his career. No one trusted him and when the shit hit the fan, the Sulk would have no one to blame but himself.

The Abomination looked like he had plenty more to say, but one of his minders dragged him away. The world looked on in amazement. No one had ever seen the Sulk humiliated in this way before. And what had been seen could never be unseen. Back in Westminster, Dom rubbed his hands. Now no one would be talking about David Cameron any more. “But no one really cares about Dave,” whimpered the Sulk. Dom smiled. That’s what had made today’s fiasco even more brilliant. He had the bases covered.

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