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Sunday, 30 September 2007

Defection rumours are FALSE

There have been rumours of a high profile conservative defecting to Labour during next week's conference. I have been directly approached to ask if it is me.

Categorically I would like to state for the record that this is something I would not consider. I am the Monkey with a BLUE rosette, and no other colour. I'm a conservative monkey.

Furthermore, I won't be going to conference, as my bosses won't let me have time off work. The directory enquiries company talks about having a great outlook for work/life balance, but I've found out the hard way in this call centre that the work/life balance thing only counts if you live to work! I've only just managed to pursuade them to allow me a single day off so I can go to Yorkshire for a selection meeting on Tuesday. An e-mail from a senior party official has stated my attendance at conference is mandatory as a high profile candidate, but unfortunately, I won't be there.

So regardless of my conflict with the seniors in the party at the moment, I won't EVER be voting or supporting Labour!

Saturday, 29 September 2007

First political memory

I hope this comes out as the laptop screen is mostly flashing on and off, going multicoloured and displaying strange pop-ups from websites I'm sure I haven't visited. It's either the damage caused by Pink Dog's website alone, or it's a result of that combined with me lending my computer to Sweaty Nora the other day in exchange for a week's bacon sandwiches, although I don't know what sites she visited. I still get my banana sandwiches for free there though, although they do taste a bit funny now.

Anyway, it appears I have been 'tagged'. No, I don't have an ASBO, but rather tagged in something called a meme by David Jones MP, and Daily Referendum. I'm still new to this blogging, so I'll give it a go.

The meme is to relate to the readers one's first political memory.

Well, it was the early 1980s, and I was but a young monkey. I'd been reading the newspapers left behind by the keeper in the zoo where I lived with my family, and listening to their radio.

Due to legal reasons, I'm not permitted to state which zoo, as firstly my family are still there, happy, and furthermore they have an injunction against me mentioning which zoo as it would amount to bad publicity for them as I escaped from there in 2005. They have agreed not to attempt to re-capture me in return for my silence on mentioning which zoo had a successful escape with no recapture of an animal.

They were talking in the paper (I believe it was The Sun) about the invasion of the Falklands by Argentina, and I admit I had been following the story quite a bit previously in other papers left around. I'm not an agressive monkey, so I thought the prospect of war was a little daunting, but when I heard on the radio how one rabidly left-leaning Labour MP thought Margaret Thatcher was bananas, I suddenly thought: hang on, that's my kind of woman! I was a right-winger from that point on, and quite vociferous on supporting British victory in the Falklands.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s the zoo loaned me out for various television and acting stints (I was always getting called up for PG Tips tea adverts) and it was through acting that I met Arnold Schwartzenegger in 1987, and through talking to him, I helped him with fixing his political opinions.

There were other things that developed my Conservatism, various things I read and saw on the news, but it wasn't until 2005 that I met the Tory lady who gave me a banana as mentioned before that really got me dedicated and involved in politics.

Now, I understand these memes have to be passed on. I'm tagging Anastasia Beaumont-Bott, Archbishop Cranmer, John Moorcraft, Tory Heaven and Linguanaut (Damon Lord).

Problems with my computer

I was surfing away, happy as a monkey with a banana drinking a cup of tea for the PG Tips adverts (ah, those were the days, that's what first got me into doing small jobs in Hollywood), when I saw the Lib Dem Pink Dog's blog post on James Purnell. Go view it yourself by clicking here, then come back and read on.

I laughed and laughed so hard after commenting there that I fell out of my tree. On falling, I bumped my laptop. I'm fine, but the machine isn't; it still works, but now the screen only shows stuff in black and white. I've a good mind to take legal action against Pink Dog now, for putting up a picture so funny that it has been to my detriment.

Be warned, Pink Dog. I'm going to my solicitors' office on Tuesday morning for preliminary advice, before I head off to another selection meeting.

Friday, 28 September 2007

Another selection meeting coming up

I'm off to Yorkshire next week. I'm not going to conference, as there's a selection meeting for me to attend. I've got my train ticket booked, time off work, and everything, travelling to Manchester, then across via Leeds. The town of Barmpotsby is a good Conservative/Labour marginal. It's got a lot of rural areas in the constituency, so I reckon it's got a good chance to go blue next time. The local Conservative Association is looking for a candidate, and I'm off to hopefully get selected!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, 27 September 2007

Conservative Future Elections

It is important to support the youth section of the Conservative Party, and as a prominent A-List candidate, I'm openly declaring my support today for Conservative Future 4 Britain, and their candidates. Today Anastacia Beaumont-Bott threw a hat into the ring. Good luck, Anastacia!

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Some Conservatives have all the fun...

News has just reached me that a highly successful university branch of Conservative Bestiary spent a major proportion of its budget at the end of the last academic year travelling to foreign climes, before spending the majority of the university-provided funding indulging in the artistic undressing atributes of ladies of talent.

Ladies of the night? I prefer ladies of the Right. However, one must admire their principled application of the free market economy within the European Union. Some conservatives have all the fun....

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Will you be my friend?

Ladies and Gentlemen, Monkeys and Bananas, I am now on Facebook. If you would like to be my friend, do click accordingly. It's one of those things that a politician must do these days, keeping a Facebook account profile, so happily I do it.

Will Monk's Facebook profile

Candidate in trouble

Only on the A-list for a short time, and already I'm in trouble. Conference is coming up, and I've been told in no uncertain terms that my attendance is expected.

But I can't go.

I've tried getting time off at work, at the directory enquiries firm where I work, but they are extremely strict about awarding time off or holiday time, as the priority is to keep people on the phones, and time off is at a premium. In fact, one colleague in the team where I work had a bit of a breakdown in the office this afternoon. Her father's funeral was today, and they'd given her compassionate leave to arrange the funeral, but was not allowed to take any more time off today, the day her father was buried. I'm starting to feel that this is not such a happy place to work after all. It was resolved in the end as they gave her ten minbutes off the phones to call her mother's mobile, then told her she had to get back to work or face a disciplinary. Are call centres the modern equivalent of the 19th century workhouses? I suspect they are.

But back to politics. I need to think of a convincing excuse to tell my employer why I'm not at work during the forthcoming conference; then if I do manage to get to conference, I must then avoid the cameras and press, as they are likely to want to interview me (as I am the only openly bestial candidate) and I might be seen back home by my bosses.

What to do?

Monday, 17 September 2007

Interspecies voters conference

I was invited to give a speech yesterday at an interspecies conference about getting out the bestial vote. The audience was composed of more than fifty percent birds, which supports the recently published academic observation that birds are more politically astute. There were various speakers from different parties, including a socialist ferret, myself representing the conservative point of view, a pigeon from the Liberal Democrats and a Jack Russell from UKIP.

The socialist ferret gave a speech about all sections of the society (particularly the underprivileged) participating in voting, citing successes in local council elections such as in Birmingham where pets had controversially got the vote thanks to Labour. My speech went well, on the importance of democracy and voter participation amongst first time animal voters, but shortly after chaos broke out.

The Jack Russell from UKIP was rather twitchy and nervous, and kept snapping at things that weren't there, and fell off the platform as he started on about referenda for various European issues. Poor thing, he collapsed half way through and had to go and lie down. The Lib Dem pigeon got into a bit of a flap about this, forgot what he was saying, then flew about the hall pooping on attendees' heads.

Everyone exited the hall, to find that someone had scattered bread outside and the birds lost it and went wild, particularly the swans. This was part of the intended buffet for afterwards. What had been a successful event was spoiled by careless catering and UKIP. I picked up a hand of bananas and went home.

Stating the obvious

Ah, the glorious Liberal Democrats, celebrating their silliness by stating the flippin' obvious at their party blogging awards:

"The Liberal Democrat blogging community is very much a community," said award winner James Graham.

Um, yes. What else would a community be, but a community? It is implied in the first usage of the word community.

Now you'll have to excuse me for stating the obvious, but this blog is bananas....

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Back to work

Back home in Ludlow, I headed off to work on Friday. Working in a call centre is okay, it certainly pays the bills, but I don't know, maybe something has changed since we got out of training. In training, they presented it as being a bright and bubbly company to work in, with plenty of opportunity for the aspiring member of staff. However, when I get out on the floor, it seems that not everyone is happy.

They certainly weren't happy with me when I returned to work. Last week I pulled a sickie to get off work and go to London, and this week I somehow managed to book it off as holiday. It's incredible, as they queue up the calls such, and have such a high turnover of staff that it's nigh impossible to book any time off because I should be on the phones, but somehow I did it.

But when I got in on Friday, they gave me 24 hours notice that I had a disciplinary meeting on Saturday for my absence last week (as they had changed my shifts without telling me whilst I was away, and now must permanently do a weekend day as well, and they'll give me one day off in the week in exchange, the weekday at their discretion). I'm thinking there is something amiss here, as when I told various colleagues that I was going for a disciplinary, they were not worried, but rather quite congratulatory. "Well done! That's time off the phones!" Not to worry though, it was my first offence so they would let it slide.

Perhaps working for a directory enquiries company is not all it cracked up to be. Maybe I am just a phone monkey.... And having an employer which messes around with your hours so is not conducive to planning my diary as to knowing which constituency meetings I can attend for selection!

Have to go now, I'm off to take part and give a speech at an interspecies forum to discuss bestial politics and encouraging voter participation in the animal kingdom. Should be interesting.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Unsuccessful monkey

I was unfortunate enough not to be selected at the meeting on Wednesday evening to be the prospective Conservative candidate for the constituency of Cùl-mhùtaireachd Coicèin. I'm a dejected little monkey now.

And no, the promotional video did not help. BT are such in the little town of Pog-Mo-Thoin (where the meeting was held) that it seems they've only just got dial-up. That's why no blogging for a few days. I caught a stray wireless signal across the water from Stornoway at one point, but then it was gone, like, like... something that goes.

I only have a few minutes as I'm just changing buses in Glasgow again, stealing a wireless signal from a local office, in Buchanan Street Bus Station, so I can't write any more just now. I'll write some more soon when I get back to Ludlow. I'm off to get a banana in batter in batter in batter in batter (I'll push the boat out and have extra batter)with chips and then catch the National Express back to Digbeth, Birmingham, and then home to Ludlow.

Toodle pip!

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Glasgow and bananas

I'm in Glasgow in Buchanan Street Bus Station at the moment, stealing a stray wireless signal from a local office. I'm on my way to Pog-Mo-Thoin, just opposite the Butt of Lewis, main town of the Cùl-mhùtaireachd Coicèin constituency. It's been a long journey, and it's not over yet. A trek over to Digbeth in Birmingham, then a long journey via Manchester on the bus to Glasgow. I'm waiting for my overnight bus up the west coast via Inverness, where I have to change to catch the bus to Pog-Mo-Thoin. All this on the off-chance I might get selected as Conservative candidate for the next General Election. The things I do for my party....

So what's to see? Buses, like every other bus station in the country. I went for a walk to get some food, and found myself in a chip shop. There were a few tables and chairs inside, offering a basic café service. It reminded me of Sweaty Noras Greasy Poon back in Ludlow. They have the strange delicacy here of a mars bar in batter. I ordered a banana in batter with chips. They then asked me if I wanted it in batter. Doesn't it come in batter already? I asked. It does, they clarified in their delicious Glaswegian accent, but do I want extra batter? I decided I did. Twice.

I think they then asked if I was going to eat it outwith. I was puzzled, but apparently it means outside, as it's the opposite of within. I took my chips and banana in batter in batter in batter and headed back to the bus station.

Ah, here comes the bus! See you soon!

Vote Monkey with a Blue Rosette Video

Now that I'm an A-List candidate for the Conservative Party, it is only fair that I have a promotional video. I knocked this together with the help of Johan and Vlad. I'll be touring the country visiting constituencies that are to select their prospective parliamentary candidates, and this video can only aid me in the attempt to get selected.

So sit back, get out the popcorn (or bananas!), and enjoy.

And don't forget to Vote Monkey with a Blue Rosette when it comes to selection in your consituency!


I'll be off in a little while, I have a very early start. I have to go the Scottish rural consituency in the highlands called Cùl-mhùtaireachd Coicèin, a constituency previously and likely to remain a Lib Dem/SNP marginal. A conservative Monkey with a Blue Rosette like me, however, if selected, could easily turn things around and make the seat blue! I've also heard that they've already got someone in mind for selection, but it's never official. I need to go there, give my speech, answer their questions, and who knows maybe get selected. I've heard on good authority they might be looking for someone a bit more local though, so it might be a wasted journey.

Before I head off to Scotland, however, I have a few things to do....

Monday, 10 September 2007

I'm a happy tree-hugger

I am happy to be a member of the Tory Party, and an A-List candidate to boot!

That nice Mr Cameron's policy group has been thinking about green measures, but has particularly been lambasted for changing the measure of wealth of a nation, abandoning GDP as a measurement. The Times has written it up like this:

the most controversial idea may be the proposed abandonment of GDP (gross domestic product) as the main measure of the nation’s success. Goldsmith and Gummer suggest it could be replaced with the so-called Happy Planet Index (HPI), devised by the New Economics Foundation and Friends of the Earth, which tries to include measures of human wellbeing and happiness in measures of national success.

David Cameron has been lambasted as a tree-hugger for this, but I think this is a brilliant idea. After all, the world needs more tree-huggers. I'm a happy little monkey, and if I didn't hug my tree, I'd fall down off my branch.

So I'm a Tory tree-hugger and proud. If I wasn't, I'd be out of my tree!

Sunday, 9 September 2007

Which country are you?

This monkey is apparently Taiwan....

You're Taiwan!

Despite enormous setbacks, including the fact that most people refuse to
recognize who you are or even that you exist at all, you've built yourself into quite a
productive person.  You've got a little trouble maintaining a sense of personal order,
but through the mess, you're still very industrious and have a small but pivotal impact on
almost everyone you know, and even people you don't.  You make a whole lot of stuff.

Take the Country Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid


I've been working odd jobs, in addition to my job at the directory enquiries call centre as a phone monkey. Some of you may have seen my latest job, involving a public appearance on television. For those who may have missed it, it's on YouTube, and reproduced below. I admit it was done under a lot of make-up, so I don't quite look the same, and they made me take my blue rosette off, but I did a good day's job, and finally got to show off my musical talents. And that, dear readers, is how I was able to afford my little jaunt to London recently to become an A-List candidate. Now if only I could get a job advertising bananas....

Saturday, 8 September 2007

Leaving London

Friday was a final day of training in Conservative Central Office, or CCHQ as we insiders call it, before heading back home. About five minutes before the end, who should pop in? Only David Cameron himself! He spent a few moments with me, talking about the importance of renewal in the party, and was glad to have such members from diverse backgrounds, including me, a monkey! Unfortunately, he was off to make a speech somewhere so didn't have time to take a picture.

I headed over to London Euston, my confidence boosted. I decided it was time to ride home in style, so I caught the Virgin train back to Birmingham, first class!

I won't be online for a few days, as I'm watching the rugby. Toodle-pip!

Friday, 7 September 2007

And the winner is....

My congratulations to the winner of the Miss Tory T-Shirt competition tonight, namely Ms Bernice Alice-Jan Giblets, where I was a guest judge. It was hosted in the Opallo in Spannersmith, W6, by the West London Conservative Bestiary.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Hangover in Westminster

I don't remember what happened last night. I don't remember if Mark Rhymes stayed out too late either. I found him to be a very slick and savvy. Quite a people person, very persuasive, a smooth talker. His words slide around you like the beer slid down my throat last night. Ah, beer. How I love you, yet how treacherous you are! All I know is that about 4am, I woke up back in my hotel room, with my mouth tasting like carpet. I'm still trying to put together what happened.

I got up a few hours later and went downstairs for breakfast, after a quick call in to work to call in sick again. I spoke to the call flow department, who deal with that sort of thing. They moaned about how there were a number of people calling in sick today. It seems the call centre industry, particularly in the directory enquiries subsector, has a lot of problems with staff retention and attendance, but I was pulling a genuine sickie this time, the hangover saw to that. I downed a gallon of coffee, put on my sunglasses and headed back to Tory HQ for another day of induction for A-List candidates.

It started well; and by lunchtime I felt assured of success. We headed over to the Houses of Parliament for lunch. I got my lunch (I was going to have a fry up to get over the hangover, but I felt sick, so had a banana fruit salad instead), and as we were queuing up to pay, an elderly and seemingly doddery and senile man was arguing with the cashier over the price of a cup of tea. He kept trying to pay one penny more. "That's Ming Campbell, leader of the Liberal Democrats," my Conservative colleague whispered to me. "This is where he's been hiding out all summer. Poor chap, he's had nowhere else to go. All on his own. He hasn't said a thing for months until just now."

The argument continued, until Ming finally lost it. "Do you know who I am?" he shouted.

"No," replied the cashier, quick as a flash, "and neither do the rest of the country!"

Nice retort. Oh, how I laughed. I would say the old ones are the best, but that's not true in Ming Campbell's case.

The afternoon went well, and I have to tell you, it was brilliant! And the best bit? I am now an A-List candidate! Must go now, I've been invited the Miss Tory T-Shirt competition hosted by the London West Conservative Bestiary tonight as a judge.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Westminster or Bust!

Getting to Conservative Central Office is a task in itself. Although the Smithfield car park where I live is quite near the railway line, it's a bit of a walk to the station itself. And then getting to London....Trains from Ludlow to London are not easy to catch. First you must trek to Shrewsbury, change then head over to Birmingham New Street, change then catch the Silverlink service or Virgin train down to London Euston. The alternative is to travel down to Hereford, and hope trains are running down into London Paddington. In the end, I opted for a very early start via Shrewsbury and Birmingham. It was slightly cheaper to go to London Marylebone from Birmingham Moor Street instead, so I did that.

Ah, London! How I love the town. My appointment at CCHQ was at 3pm, and I'm going to be staying in London for a few days. It's unusual, they said, to have potential A-List candidates coming forward this late in the political cycle, but after Ali Miraj fell from grace, a spot came up.

I nearly didn't make the appointment though. The London Underground had major problems caused by striking unions. How I love Margaret Thatcher for the way she stood up to the unions in the 1980s. What we need is a Tory leader like David Cameron who can carry on the way she did. (Is that OK, Central Office, to prove I'm not an Ancramite?)

Anyway, you'll be wanting to know how I got on. Well, it's only the first day. I did some tests first, some psychological profiling, to ensure I'm not nuts, although they say if you want to be involved in politics, you must be! From the results of one of the tests, I have the sort of character where I get upset if people don't park in spaces properly in car parks. Living in a tree above a car park, I can't say I'm all that bothered, but I nodded sagely and replied that it must mean I have an eye for detail when it comes to local issues.

They're going to give me some more tests tomorrow, give a few speeches, do some mock press interviews, and an odd one where I have to speak for three minutes authoratively on a topic I know nothing about. This is a vital skill in politics, aparently. I'm back at the hotel now, just logging on to let you all know I'm fine and living it up in London.

I'll have to go in a few minutes. I've been invited out for a few drinks by the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Hooting constituency in South London, well known for its large owl population. His name is Mark Rhymes, and like me, is not a human. He's a secretary bird, which no doubt will appeal to the local bird population. He's also nominally the Chairman of the Conservative Bestiary, although the organisation is doing very little nationally at the moment.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Joining the party at last

Latest news: I just had an e-mail from London, and I've been invited to an interview tomorrow at Conservative Party HQ in Victoria Street, Westminster. They've been so impressed by this blog that they're giving me special dispensation, waiving the membership fee, and want to interview me for A-List candidacy! I was astonished, but already my political career is taking off.

The only problem is I just started my new job at a call centre here in Ludlow on Monday. An agency lined it up for me. I do like my job, working for a well known directory enquiries firm that have just set up a branch here in Ludlow, but it's only my third day I'll have to pull a sickie. Ah well, I did vow to dedicate my life to the Conservative cause. Here's a photo of me at work!

Official Statement in light of Michael Ancram's comments

I must now make an official statement in light of Michael Ancram QC's comments recently.

I am not related to David Cameron.

The reasons for this statement are quite clear: after becoming aware of Ancram's statements about trashing the Thatcherite past, David Cameron was heard in disbelief to exclaim: Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle! This is particularly poignant as Stephen Dorrell has said that Cameron is building on Thatcher's legacy.

Since Cameron's throwaway remark, I have been hounded all day by journalists, particulary by journalists from The Independent and The Guardian. So for once and for all, let me make it clear, David Cameron is related to me only by common political belief, and shares no familial link with me.

For the record, here's a picture of me with my Uncle Lester.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Missing Arnold Schwartzenegger

I'm most upset that dear Arnold is not going to the Conservative Party Conference. I planned to go, but I sadly don't think I will attend, as I now won't be seeing my old friend again. We worked together in 1987 on the set of the film Predator, where I played the eponymous monster. I was chosen for the role because of my flexibility, particularly amongst the trees. I've done quite a bit of movie work since then. Arnie's probably busy saving the world again, that's why he can't go.

Oh, the fun we had! In fact, it was through our discussions over the lunchtime lasagne (I hate lasagne! The only fruit baskets on set were in Arnie's trailer, but he used to give me bananas) that Arnie first got interested in politics. He was so impressed by my political opinions, even though I hadn't declared my love for the Conservative Party yet (I outed myself in 2005), that he later stated privately in correspondence with me that I was his political inspiration for getting involved in politics. He's now Governor of California, so you can't say my advice was wrong! We've remained in touch ever since, but haven't seen each other since then.

Dragons are political animals too

I must admit that I was rather dubious whether dragons would class as political animals, particularly as they fall into the field of crpytozoology, whereas yours truly is a subject of zoology. But after protestations from the political blogger ThunderDragon, I hereby declare that I am adding my Tory blogging friend to the blogroll. I'm not including Recess Monkey, though, as it's just a human pretending to be a monkey. How droll... Get some real simian DNA if you want to be a monkey!

Maybe next year Iain Dale can do a category in the next edition of his blogging book with list of a top twenty political animals?

Sunday, 2 September 2007

Conservative Political Opinions

I've just found out that I've been added to the blogrolls in Political Opinions. Very nice! The only problem is I'm listed as a commentator.

I don't know why they've made this mistake. I'm curious why they've listed me as such, because I'd like to state clearly for the record my political stance and goals: I am a full supporter of the Conservative Party, currently investigating membership. When a full member, I plan to apply to stand for election as soon as possible - I'm sure there's a consituency out there for me? It is my personal goal in the next General Election to be elected as the first Tory monkey in Parliament.

And I think David Cameron is great!

Love in Wales

I apologise for not blogging recently, but there is a good reason. Johan, Perspiration Betty, Sweaty Nora and I headed off to the Shropshire coast, only to find some mountains in between the sea and the edge of Shropshire. Perspiration Betty's SatNav still showed us as being in Shropshire for a while though, and I thought I was going to lose the bet, but finally it flicked over to showing us in Aber-wrist-watch (or something like that) on the coast. We proceeded to celebrate the existence of Wales, and it was whilst out on the town/village, I met the most beautiful monkey I have ever seen. Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl. She had yellow feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there, know what I mean! She was there with her friends, and it was a whirlwind romance, doing things that unwed monkeys shouldn't, and we decided to stay a few days on; but it was not to be.

I was approaching asking her to elope with me to Gretna Green, but she then dropped the bombshell. She was there on her hen-do, and I was her final fling! I should have guessed by her clothing, wearing a hen outfit from Ann Summers. I felt used. We parted amicably, but I swore never to be hurt again.

We headed back to Shropshire, where I decided I needed a sole focus in life: I vowed to dedicate my life to the Conservative cause, and would not rest until David Cameron was Prime Minister.