The US Presidents and UK Prime Ministers have long droned on about the “special relationship” between the two nations, but how ‘special’ is special?
It’s fair to assume that the world leaders are fairly riotous sorts when it comes to their after summit wind down, but how far do they go? Over the years, we know the treasury keys have, from time to time, been chucked in a bowl in the middle of the coffee table as things got a little bit freaky late on. So, wouldn’t it be wonderful to have some sort of reference to establish the winners and losers in the long history of the Anglo-American swingathon?
Well, funnily enough…
The Frances Folsom Trophy
In 1885, Frances Folsom became Mrs Grover Cleveland and the following year the youngest First Lady in United States history. In 1887 she accompanied Cleveland to the G2 summit in London to discuss which country would get to invent the diesel engine, radar, film cameras etc(all invented by the British, as you’ll know). It was after this meeting of the economic superpowers of the day that British Prime Minister Robert Gascoygne-Cecil 7th Marquess of Salisbury and his wife, Georgina, entertained the Clevelands by taking them on a ‘stoning’ tour of London(a popular activity of the day, where the wealthy would cruise the squalid slums of inner cities throwing coal at the plebs who risked injury to get valuable fuel). The two couples hit it off, and later back at Number 10, a tradition which would define the ‘special’ relationship began.
125 years on, The Frances Folsom Trophy is designed to work out the winners of this tradition over the years(Gascoigne-Cecil was clearly the winner in the original ‘meeting’, for a start Georgina was posh and therefore probably ungainly, loud and ridiculously accented)(not to mention the fact that Mrs Cleveland was still only 22 and considered, by the standards of the day to be… H. O. T.). Anyway, results are based, via a series of sophisticated computer models and complex equations(primarily the gI – Giggs Index of ‘likelihood’ and the PJAS – Paula Jones Aesthetic Standard), on the Treasury Key System.
First Round Knockout:
2011: Samantha Cameron £££ vs $ Michelle Obama
2007: Laura Bush $$ vs £ Sarah Brown
1998: Hilary Clinton $$ vs 0 Cherie Blair
1993: Barbara Bush 0 vs £ Norma Major
1989: Dirty Denis Thatcher ££ vs $$$ Nancy Reagan
1977: Eleanor Carter $ v 0 Audrey Callaghan
1974: Betty Ford $$$ vs. 0 Mary Wilson
1968: Lady Bird Johnson $$ v 0 Elizabeth Douglas Home, Countess of Home
1962: Lady Dorothy MacMillan £ vs $$$ Jacqueline Kennedy
1956: Mamie Eisenhower $ vs ££ Clarissa Eden
1950: Violet Atlee £ vs. 0 Bess Truman
1945: Clementine Churchill £ vs 0 Eleanor Roosevelt
1928: Grace Coolidge $$$ vs £ Lucy Baldwin
1918: Margaret Lloyd George ££ vs. $ Edith Wilson
1914: Margot Asquith ££ vs. $ Ellen Wilson
1905: Edith Kermit Roosevelt $ vs Lady Charlotte Campbell-Bannerman
1900: Ida McKinley PP Georgina, Marchioness of Salisbury (Deceased)
Hilary Clinton $$$ vs 0 Edith Kermit Roosevelt
Grace Coolidge $$ vs $ Laura Bush
Betty Ford $$$ vs ££ Margaret Lloyd George
Violet Atlee £ vs $$ Eleanor Carter
Samantha Cameron £££ vs 0 Norma Major
Margot Asquith 0 vs $$$$ Jacqueline Kennedy
Clementine Churchill ££ vs $ Lady Bird Johnson
Nancy Reagan $$ vs £ Clarissa Eden
Betty Ford VOID Jacqueline Kennedy
(Kennedy awarded victory due to Ford being hammered)
Nancy Reagan $$ vs. $ Eleanor Carter
Grace Coolidge $ vs. £ Clementine Churchill
(Churchill wins on the ‘we invented you’ rule)
Samantha Cameron £££ vs. $ Hilary Clinton
Clementine Churchill £ vs. ££ Samantha Cameron
Nancy Reagan $$$ vs. $$$$ Jacqueline Kennedy
I would just like to be clear here that this is not some thinly veiled attempt at declaring a fiendish secret crush on SamCam, to say there was no obvious winner is an understatement. I had assumed before inputting all the data into my highly complicated and very sophisticated computer model that the bookies favourite(Kennedy) would walk it. Unfortunately, she was undone by her freakish Bouvier eye thing. Kennedy wore a sneaky line in massive sunglasses to try and mask it but, bottom line… her eyes were well far apart(Seabird rather than hammerhead admittedly and yes, an increased field of vision is probably a marvellous tool in the event of say, an assasination attempt, but still… freaky). Obviously we Brits, as mentors, have to set an example to our American cousins and so we don’t make a fuss of it , but there are times when British politeness, discretion and manners have to take a back seat.
There is also the minor point that pairing up the Cormorant-like Kennedy with renowned T-Rex Nicholas Sarkozy in the Berlasconi Cup would just be too weird for words. So it falls to Samantha Cameron, winner of the Francis Folsom Trophy, to take on Bruni…
A truly special relationship.