Howard Jacobson on the studied buffoonery of London’s mayor
We call Boris Johnson “Boris,” but we don’t call David Cameron “David.” That ostensibly small distinction, which you can bet your life does not feel small to the prime minister, conceals a world of difference. They are both Etonians, both graduates of Oxford, both onetime members of the Bullingdon Club—a secret dining and boozing society for the fatuously overprivileged, where the wearing of tails and the popping of champagne corks (if not the throwing of frisbees) is de rigueur—and therefore both, you would think, unlikely to strike a single chord of sympathy or solidarity with a British populace bleeding from a thousand cuts. Yet we refer to Boris as “Boris” and smile when we see him on television. It takes some explaining.
— Howard Jacobson, “Whiff-Whaff”