Christmas messages from some of my so-called friends
I am a good dog. Yes. Yes. I am a good dog. I am. No. I do not want any more paté. I feel sick
DUSTY PENHALIGON. As a leading conservactionist, I will be remembering Christmases past, as they were full of buildings that hadn’t been pulled down yet. This year my colleagues and I will be re-enacting a traditional Tudor Christmas with goose and rickets.
I would urge any architect reading this to pause and think very carefully before designing anything new. Especially if it’s on a site currently occupied by built heritage. Remember, a nation is judged on how it treats its old buildings.
My favourite architect? That would have to be John Nash, as there’s bloody loads of his stuff missing. We must rebuild it now. Watch out for next year’s civic regeneration campaign: Add Panache With A Dash Of Nash.
DARCY FARQUEAR’SAY. Wishing you all a gorgeous, iTectural, Auto-Modernist Christmas with lots of merry quips and lashings of tasteful influences*.
THE PRINCE OF WALES. At this most glorious and auspicious time in the Christian calendar, it is the Family that commands one’s most ardent loyalty. Be that family humble or be it Royal and regardless of how remarried family members be.
The institutions of Christmas and the Monarchy are deeply instilled in the Peoples of Great Britain and the Commonwealth. From lowly costermongers selling their Cockney apples and pears to eminent Classical architects e.g. my old schoolfriend Rollo van Dunkel.
‘Sir,’ he said to me the other day, ‘your place in the affection of ALL Peoples is most assured. Why, when you become King your subjects are as likely to remain seated during the National Anthem (!) as they are to forego their Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. Oh, and if I may be of any assistance in conceptualising, designing or project-managing your Visionary Britain with symmetry and horse-riding and feudal organic farming plus traditional common sense on a massive scale, here’s my card. Ying tong iddle-i po!’
Alas, I’m afraid not all architects share Rollo’s enthusiasm for humane design and the Goons. Mummy’s Institute for the Protection of British Architects, for instance, has reacted predictably to my announcement that upon assuming the Throne I shall remonarchise the architectural profession. The RIPBA have now lodged an appeal with the Privy Council. I wish them luck. I recently met all the members of the Privy Council during a gourmet weekend aboard the Royal Train. I must say I found them very supportive of my remonarchisation plans.
The RIPBA Mummy’s Gold Medal will continue in its present format. As King, I will personally select every year an architect worthy of Royal preferment. I have already chosen the first half dozen or so. Yours, walking backwards to Christmas, HRH Neddy Seagoon.
MRS SHONA BIFTER. As dhe Mam of dhe secretary of state for entertainment, I’ll say dhis. Are Azzy is doing a top job, and architects are just jealous because dhey are stuck-up ponces and don’t like eh when a Scouse lad’s in charge. Ask him anything – ANYTHING – about The X Factor. DHEN tell me he’s not culturally alert. And I’ll lamp yez. Merry Christmas. Watch it.
ROCK STEADY EDDIE. All right? Middle East fixing’s my game, and my seasonal tip is get out of Dubai and get into Iran. You can, you know, with the right contacts…
THE MAYOR OF LONDON. Yup. It’s Christmas, which means at least one gratuitous Classical reference per paragraph, perhaps something from the Iliad. Here’s a thought, masters and mistresses of epic space: anyone fancy a job at the GLA redesigning stuff and whatnot? Seeking non-smoker, must have GSOHomer.
BAUHAU (via Dog Whisperer speech-to-text software©). Who is a good dog then? I am. I am. Oh yes I am. I am a good dog. Yes. Yes. I am a good dog. I am. No. I do not want any more paté. I feel sick.
And frightened. My clothes have a scratchy, sparkly feel. I may have had a little accident. I’m not sure. I’m too excited. My mentor and his new co-mentor seem happy, if a little unstable. I should bark or something. Yes. Bark, and skittle about the floor. ‘Arc! Crit!’ They are amused when I bark that. I do not like that subtly glowing pretend tree. It disturbs me. It looks – how do you say? – minimalistic.
Oh. That ironic Christmas music again. Actually, I think I have definitely had a little accident.