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December 10, 2011


Well, I suppose the people at the Grauniad know their Monty Python as well as we do.

I thought that was a reference to Thatcher. Though I wonder if this Python sketch was referring to her as well.

No way did Python refer to Thatcher...their show stopped years before Thatcher was PM. If they were poking fun at a PM, it would have been Heath.

No, it's just the Brit stereotype of a disgruntled middle-aged housewife.

So is the handbag carrying line in the above about disgruntled housewives or about Thatcher? A quick google shows this, so I'm now not sure exactly what the line there refers to. Still funny though.

A confrontation which is histrionic but which doesn't involve physical violence. Such confrontations are also called handbag situations.
Handbags at ten paces

CharlesWT, thanks for the link! It is little wonder that such a strange and exotic culture would not do well in Europe ;^)

Iirc the first prominent wielder of the handbag as prime minister was Golda Meir. Ephraim Kishon wrote about how the mere appearance of her with it stroke fear into those she negotiated with.

"Handbagging" is a British political cliche dating from the early 80s.

"... In the 1980s, a new word entered the language, as civil servants muttered about their dread of being "handbagged" by the Prime Minister, though we remain ambivalent about how injurious assault by handbag might be. Football commentators dismiss spats between players as "handbags at dawn'", but to be "handbagged" – as Tony Blair was said to have been by the Women's Institute when its members slow-handclapped a speech he gave in 2000 – is to have undergone serious political assault and battery.
But Maggie's handbag did more than introduce a new mode of aggression. It violently wrenched the bag from its traditional associations. ..."

There is also, of course, the Lady Bracknell association.

It reminds me of Eddie Izzard's bit about the queen battling a crazy dog using a handbag with a brick inside.

There's a very entertaining Youtube of a British woman bashing wannna be jewel thieves with her handbag. She knocks one of them off his motorbike.

And, back to Monte Python, perhaps this skit was the kind of thing that triggered the handbagger/Thatcher connection?

I guess that video should have been posted on the 9th.

In Silent Hill IV - The Room the first weapon the hero can give to his girlfriend-to-be is a handbag (later to be replaced by a piece of chain). She's more effective with that than the hero with golf clubs or metal tubes.

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