As Britain gets ready to decide whether or not to stay in Europe, actress Emma Thompson has waded into the debate by declaring the UK “a tiny little cloud bolted, rainy corner of sort of Europe – a cake filled, misery laden grey old island.”
Putting aside the fact she’s inexplicably lumped lovely cake into a rant about how crap Britain is, the fact of the matter is she certainly doesn’t speak for me when she says she feels European.
To say you feel proud to be British seems like a taboo subject sometimes, and being patriotic frowned upon.
So, as a British person, not European, here’s 10 things that make Britain, Great..
1).Our ability to make cups of tea. Only we know it’s the answer to all life’s ills. Get the kettle on. It makes everything better. (Other countries can’t even begin to compare. Glass cups and hot water? What’s THAT all about? Bring on the mugs.
2) Queuing. A great British pastime. Whether it be for the bus, or waiting to pay at the till. We all know to wait patiently in line.
3)Apologising for everything. Somebody stood on your toe? Or barged into you by accident?! Doesn’t matter, we’ll still apologise for it even if it was the other daft sod’s fault in the first place.
“Sorry! Sorry about that.”
4) Regional dialect. An abundance of fantastic accents abound from Yorkshire to Cockney, and all with their own unique ‘language.’
By ‘eck, it’s reet grand.
5) The beautiful coastline and gorgeous beaches. Little coastal towns with their own special charm. Being an island, wherever you live, you’re never too far away from a beach.
6) The food. Depending on what corner of the UK you live in, you’re sure to have your own local delicacy.
Be it Yorkshire puddings, Lancashire hotpot or jellied eels, you’re bound to have a traditional dish of your own.
7) The history. From Viking invasions to the Romans, the history of our green and pleasant land is a fascinating one and is celebrated in many different ways.
York celebrating their annual Viking Festival this week being just one of them.
8) The lush countryside. There’s a great mix of city and country life, and when you get out of town and into the country, the fields and wildlife are something to behold.
9) The mad but endearing traditions, from cheese rolling to welly boot flinging competitions. Delightfully charming but bonkers as well.
10) Freedom of speech. Something we totally take for granted and forget that other countries aren’t as fortunate as ourselves.
Want to say that you hate your Prime Minister and fling insults? You only need to take a look at Twitter to see that people frequently do.
Try doing that in certain other countries and see how far you get.
So there you go, Emma. Being British isn’t a bad thing at all really. Identify as a European all you like, but don’t write off an entire island as a cake filled misery laden one.
As the one you’re looking at looks a lot different to the one I see.