A pair of legs stood up and the body attached to them prepared to speak. There were so many things Nicola Sturgeon’s shapely shanks would have liked to say. About how the Daily Mail had said how much more attractive they were than Theresa May’s famously long extremities. About how the prime minister had been so intimated – or was that seduced? – by her luscious legs that she had immediately gone on the back foot. About how if all the Little Laydeez of Scotland were to vote for independence, then they too could have pins like her.
Six days ago the debate on the second Scottish referendum had been suspended after the attack on Westminster. Sturgeon began by adopting a more conciliatory note than she had when opening the debate the previous week, emphasising shared values, democracy and differences of opinion that were sincerely held.
“Yadda, yadda, yadda,” muttered Nicola’s legs. “What’s any of this got to do with us?”
“Just shut up and keep yourselves to yourselves,” replied Sturgeon
Nicola’s legs tried to unsheathe themselves by poking out from behind her lectern, but the first minister managed to rein them back in. Trust Sturgeon’s head and torso to spoil the fun, thought the legs.
With most of what needed to be said being said, Sturgeon kept things short and sweet. She had tried – my God she had tried – not to call for another independence referendum by begging Theresa to come to some kind of deal with Scotland. But Theresa had repeatedly snubbed her, refusing to even talk about the implications of Brexit for Scotland.
“That’s cos she is jealous of us,” Nicola’s legs interrupted.
Sturgeon ignored her legs and carried on. “Now is not the time for another referendum,” she said. But sometime around the beginning of 2019 when the prime minister had cobbled together some useless deal that would bankrupt everyone would be.
Another pair of legs began to twitch. These belonged to Conservative Ruth Davidson and were desperate for some airtime as they were fed up with Nicola’s hogging the limelight. Bizarrely, Davidson managed to completely overlook the fact that she had some legs, instead choosing to accuse Sturgeon of political opportunism.
Brexit was just an excuse for a second referendum that no one in Scotland wanted. Apart from the ones that did. Scotland should just knuckle down and accept it was part of a union even if that meant leaving a union it had voted to remain in.
Sturgeon stood up to clarify her position. “The prime minister told me that the terms of Brexit would all be concluded by the end of next year,” she said. “Are you now saying that I should mistrust her?”
“We’re so pretty! Oh so pretty! We’re as pretty as pretty can be,” Nicola’s legs sang, overexcited to have been called into action again so soon.
“Oh do sit down,” snapped Davidson, rather more tetchily than she had intended. Nicola’s legs were definitely getting under her skin.
The head attached to the legs of Labour’s Kezia Dugdale took exception to Davidson’s tone – though not her arguments – pointing out that the appeals for greater tolerance that had been made after the Westminster attack didn’t seem to have been heard by the Scottish Tories.
It took half an hour before the first male legs made themselves heard, as Andy Wightman got up to reaffirm the Scottish Greens support for a second referendum. Or rather a third referendum as the previous two had produced incompatible results.
“Don’t think much of his legs,” said Nicola’s legs. “He’d look rubbish in a pair of sheer tights.”
The presiding officer then called the Lib Dem Alex Cole-Hamilton.
“Wow. Is it time for a knob gag?” yelled Nicola’s legs.
“Cut the sexist crap,” Sturgeon said sternly.
“I’ve been fighting losing causes all my life,” said Cole-Hamilton. And he was determined to be on the wrong side of yet another. He got his wish.
It woz the legz wot wun it.