Of all the animals of prey, man is the only sociable one.
Every one of us preys upon his neighbour, and yet we herd together.
The Beggar's Opera: John Gay

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Invasion of the Pod People

'Harriet Harman's green elephant' is the nickname Whitehall insiders have given the two-storey green glass 'meeting pods' erected in the atrium shared by the Dept. for Communities and Local Government and the Equalities Office, according to the Sunday Times*.

It's all part of a £2.4million refit for the departments, including a number of designer sofas at £4,120 a pop. The aim of the 'soothing green' glass rooms is to reduce stress for the civil servants meeting there.

The permanent secretary at the Communities dept. (who really ought to know better) told their in-house magazine it was "a space of quality, air and light where we can work, relax and refuel in a natural ebb and flow...For me, the reworking of the atrium is an expression of how much we value each other".

It appears, then, that they value each other to the tune of exactly £72,614 - the amount we taxpayers forked out for their 'serene green tranquility rooms'.

I feel this calls for a song...




There's a pod here in Whitehall
Where we can meet and all agree
And the walls are eight yards high
Made of glass of soothing green.

Harriet Harman gave the nod
To build a place where we could feel serene;
Seventy grand’s not much to pay
For our tranquil pod of green.

We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green,
We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green.

And the pods are on two floors
Designer sofas go next door
Isn’t it grand? The taxes pay!

We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green,
We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green.

[Recession ahead, Ms Harman, recession ahead!
Spend the money quickly!
Action station! Action station!
Aye, aye, sir, fire!
Election! Election!]

‘And we live a life of ease’,
Says our in-house magazine,
‘We refuel and feel serene
In our pod of soothing green’.

We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green,
We all sit in a peace pod coloured green,
Peace pod coloured green, peace pod coloured green.

*Thanks to the new paywall, I can't link to the article - sorry!

Picture via Guido Fawkes - note the helpful way the upper level is marked 'upper' and the lower one 'lower' to avoid any possible confusion.

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