A guest article by newly crowned Westminster X-Wing Champion Sir Alister Grantham-Smyth MP, Member of Parliament for Staines Upon Thames North. In this he talks about his disdain for the term ‘Natties’ and his search for an acceptable alternative whilst playing at Westminster Nationals.
The Editor has asked one to write a brief introduction about oneself. Above is my ancestral residence, located a healthy distance from my constituency seat in Staines Upon Thames North. A television company, (Not BBC), made a docu-drama based on my grandfather that was, so I’m told, apparently quite successful. I let them film on site for a reasonable price but have never watched it myself as it was not broadcast on the BBC.
The sound of ‘Natties’ has been desecrating a variety of tournament halls for some time now. Often heard reverberating around halls with pleas to save from a false idol, others just in jubilant celebration. There does seem to be some momentum with the ungainly term. I do, though, take issue with one thing.
Natties or Nappys?
An interesting hypothesis was put forward by one of those ghastly Carolina Crates podcasters that the British dislike for the term ‘Natties’ is due to it sounding like the word ‘Nappy.’ Nappy is the correct terminology for what our former colonists call a ‘Diaper.’ Diaper itself originally referred to a type of cloth rather than the use of, as diapering is a textile pattern from the 1500s and I still fondly get my tailored vests weaved in the pattern.
More so, our disdain for the term stems from our reluctance to disembowel the rich tapestry of the Queen’s English yet further. As each day passes more and more disparaging words are entered into the official Oxford English dictionary. Only yesterday I took a deep breath and entered the servant’s quarters to find my Butler, Mr Carson, watching something on the idiot box, called I believe, ‘The Only way is Chelsea.’ A collection of permanently tanned nincompoops, masquerading in what is deemed as entertainment. Mr Carson reliably informed me that some of the terminology from such drivel has entered the mighty tome that was once the guardian of our language.
Whilst I find the term ghastly and as quoted before by one of my esteemed colleagues, “the term Natties is an affront to not only the English Language but the very foundations of British culture,” I did feel the need to add armament to my game. It had not gone unnoticed that other Members of Parliament were using the term at our weekly X-wing night in one of the larger subsidised bars. It is worth noting that we do not partake in attending tournaments with the general populace for a multitude of reasons but mainly as the members of her majesty’s opposition like the subsidised cafeteria and bars.
I am, like many of my esteemed colleagues from either side of the house, a strong believer in faith. Like the vast majority of my colleagues though, one could not bring themselves to ask for a false deity to provide help in requiring the correct procurement of symbols. Despite this the Great Hall of Westminster was filled with a rich tone of ‘Nattie’ calling on the commencement of Nationals. It was fortuitous that the only bill that was trying to get passed in Parliament that day was one about delivering a written constitution to her majesty’s subjects.
For whom will save us?
The search for a deity ‘to Save,’ was split down party lines which also allowed internal party politics to rise to the surface. Half of the Labour contingent called upon Jeremy to save them whilst others took umbrage at this and called for Tony. The sole Liberal Democrat was seen on the bottom tables asking for anyone to save but one is not sure whether that was to do with the predicament of his three Tie Punishers or just his party in general.
Even a respected and sensible party such as the Conservatives allowed petty squabbles to spill onto the table top. Cries of both “Theresa Save us,” and “Boris Save us,” were prominent. I on the other hand looked back to a more civil time to channel a more positive power. Not as clumsy or random as either a minority government or coalition; an elegant stateswoman for a more civilized age. For over eleven years, Margaret Thatcher was the guardian of peace and justice in the United Kingdom. Before the dark times… before Blair.
This worked most wondrously with my improved alternative version of ‘natties.’ As I stood mid game in the final against one of my party’s leading lights, looking magnificent with his blonde bouffant of hair, I implored, “Margaret Save me! Procurement of Desired Symbols,” or PODS for short as it has since become known. I was rewarded with a roll of four critical hits, blessed be the faithful. My opponent on the other hand called upon himself to save himself. He rolled three blanks.
The former Minister for Education could be seen sniggering in the background.
The ‘Procurement of Desired Symbols,’ has become what the youth of today may define as a buzz word around Parliament. As a member for the Parliamentary Committee for the protection of the Queen’s English I have taken great strides in making a push for this new phrase to be entered into gaming heritage as a replacement for that ghastly phrase of current use.
I do, though, take issue with one thing.
Members of her majesty’s opposition, who by and large come from lower breeding stock, have taken to desecrating my new term by calling it ‘Poddies.’ This disturbs me as for the most part it sounds like ‘Potties,’ which the Crate makers in Carolina will no doubt find most amusing.
Editor: I will just point out that Sir Alister’s view points on ‘natties’ and other subject matters like ‘The Only Way is Essex,’ are his own and not reflective of Zombie Squadron Members as a whole. Neither is he a part of Zombie Squadron as he flies for his local constituency squadron, the Staines Massive Squadron.
In general we have become rather fond of the term Natties, (I imagine much to his Disdain), and now regularly employ the term.
Westminster Nationals winning list 2017
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Useful Links and Further Reading.