"He's behind you!" "Oh no he isn't!" "Oh yes he is!" It's panto season in Spain. We know this because one of the great dames has decreed it thus. Mariano Rajoy has said there's a panto. Oh yes there is. It was a peculiar observation by Mazza. The Spanish, as with most of the rest of the non-British world, doesn't get panto. For the Spanish it's doubly confusing. Why would you actively seek out audience participation? Ah, you see, times they are a-changing and even Mazza has got the citizen participation bug. Which part of the pantomime horse should he be? The question needs to be posted on to the Official Bulletin. At present, Mazza is firmly in the rear. But who knows? The pantomime is such that he could become the front and double up as Widow Twankey.
Mariano's panto will take place this week when the boy Pedro Sánchez of PSOE attempts to get himself voted in as prime minister (president). There are other words and expressions that one could call on to describe the current state of non-government in Spain, but Mazza has opted for pantomime. How about total farce? Here's any one of the Brian Rix-style leaders of the four parties racing around the stage of the Whitehall Theatre with his trousers round his ankles. More tea, vicar?
Just to remind you, it is now over two months since there was an election. This coming week, there is the remote possibility that the boy Pedro might actually become prime minister (president). But it is only remote on account of the pantomime nature of the whole farrago. He's tied a pre-nuptial agreement with Ciudadanos, a party with two many syllables that is referred to more easily as the C's, and a right bunch of C's they are in some politicians' estimation (Pablo Iglesias of Podemos for one). Its leader is Albert Rivera, a youthful politician who, were he to trim his name down to Al Rivera, would sound like some dreadful crooning act from the 1970s appearing for the summer season on Hastings pier under the Al moniker but in reality being Les Reeves from Warrington.
But back at the panto, and who was it that the boy Pedro chose to reveal was behind him in a YouTube video designed to persuade the party membership that Al would make a suitable partner for a progressive and reforming government with Pedro at the helm? Yes, it was none other than Pablo Iglesias. But not that Pablo Iglesias. The Hairy One from Podemos may be able to boast facial hair and a great deal of hair full stop, but the Pablo behind Pedro was the one who founded PSOE in the days when socialists really were socialists, sported frightening moustaches, lectured everyone on Karl Marx and sang "The Internationale" and actually meant it.
Mariano, meanwhile, was sending a sort of love letter to Al. Convinced that the panto will descend into high farce, he was proposing a meeting after the boy Pedro fails to garner sufficient support in either of the upcoming Congress votes this week. "You know that I am always available," said Mazza, meaning that he is quite prepared (only prepared) to countenance any sort of link with the C's and PSOE if he's still prime minister (president). "A big hug," the letter concluded in the chummy way that letters are concluded in a Spanish style.
So, what can we expect this week? Well, let's ask the audience. Will Pedro become prime minister (president)? Oh yes he will. Oh no he won't.