How to be Jeremy Clarkson

Alex Hern gives a four-step guide to being Jeremy Clarkson.

Left Foot Forward has previously brought you how to write a Richard Littlejohn column and a three step guide to writing a Simon Heffer column. Now, in our ongoing quest to ensure that no-one need read these people ever again, we present number three in an occasional series: How to be Jeremy Clarkson.

1. Present yourself as a humourist.

This is very important. The views you will be stating will largely be indefensible. This is alright if you’re Richard Littlejohn, and content with spending much of your time in a gated community in Florida, but if you want to stay in with the Chipping Norton set, you probably can’t be a pariah.

So, the first thing to do is make sure that you say everything in a silly voice, and only use overblown analogies. Because that’s what being funny is, right? So you can describe submarine warfare (£) as:

You sneak up on an enemy, in big, atomic, softly-softly slippers, flick his ear and then run off and hide.

Or call describe the European Space Agency’s space freighter (£) as:

like a wheelie bin that’s got tangled up in a teenager’s crusty bed sheet.

All harmless fun. Not actually particularly compelling reading, but it’s good enough too keep up appearances. It’s just a joke!

2. Slip in some prejudice.

Not a huge amount – you don’t want anyone to get really angry at this point, but you need to prime your audience with the idea that “he says what we’re all thinking” (for certain values of “we”). So when imagining a conversation with the Indian government (£), begin with:

Right, so you walk into a meeting with Mr Patel…

Describe the Greek bailout as the EU governments (£):

having to give all their spare cash to Stavros.

Or in a story about Britain from the air, this delightful little paragraph (£):

At present, escort girls ply for trade by leaving cards in telephone boxes. Why? The only people who use a telephone box these days are people who are desperate for a wee. So why not put a photograph of yourself, a phone number and a brief list of services you offer on the roof of a warehouse in Hammersmith? One Korean jet and you’d be rushed off your feet, literally, for a month.

A bit off colour, but nothing individually big enough to spark complaints. And if there are some, it’s just a joke! The BBC will respond by saying something like:

“Jeremy’s colourful comments are always entertaining, but they are his own comments and not those of the BBC. More often than not they are said with a twinkle in his eye.”

3. ‘Go viral’.

You’ve now got an audience who like you for perpetuating mild racial stereotypes. But how do you grow this audience? Simple, really. Say something which means your column, TV show, or guest appearance is endlessly repeated over all media for a week.

The people who condemn you were never going to buy your DVDs anyway, but more people who secretly agree with you will become fans than you’d ever get if you remained a mediocre car reviewer.

So if you’re reviewing a Korean car, claim that the designer

had probably eaten a spaniel for lunch.

If you’re talking about gay rights, say that you:

demand the right not to be bummed.

Or if you’re mocking the BBC’s requirement for impartiality, why not follow up a comment that you liked the lack of traffic on a strike day by saying of public sector workers:

“I’d have them all shot. I would take them outside and execute them in front of their families.”

If you’ve done your preparation right, you will be invulnerable to criticism. Because it’s all just a joke, right?

People who are hurt and upset by your comments just have no sense of humour. Even if what you joke about isn’t a joking matter. Even if someone citing your writings has literally shot people.

4. Laugh off the criticism, and sell more DVDs.

Very important step, this one.

See also:

A three step guide to writing a Simon Heffer columnAlex Hern, November 8th 2011

What do we know about Anders Behring Breivik? Very littleJuly 26th 2011,Dr Robert Ford

Jeremy Clarkson: A ‘birther’ born yesterdayDominic Browne, May 3rd 2011

How to write a Richard Littlejohn columnDominic Browne, March 22nd 2011

And don’t come backWill Straw, November 9th 2009

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30 Responses to “How to be Jeremy Clarkson”

  1. Watch Cameron’s pathetic ‘condemnation’ of Clarkson’s sick comments | Left Foot Forward

    […] Cameron failed to denounce his chum Jeremy Clarkson today, nor even actually condemn him for his sick remarks about executing trade unionists – […]

  2. Mrwhiteba

    you lefties all proclaim freedom of speech

    except when what is being said is not to your liking

    i object to the public service striking because they will have to work a little longer and pay a little more.

    try having a private scheme and getting a fraction of the public pension return then having to be taxed to pay for public schemes.

    so no i do not support your strike robbing my tax to pay for your pensions, get off your arses and work for a living.

    on another note i did not see any union activity when the odious Gordon Brown robbed the private schemes for public sector gains. or do the private sector pensions not count?

    The truth be told whilst the unions political muppets the labour party were in power they had not the balls to rock the boat and lose any donations, its only when the conservatives are in and have to clean up the mess left by the repeatedly incompetent labour party the suddenly start getting vocal.

    i remind you that Gordon sold our gold reserves at a stupidly low price, had he have not done this to prop up his vote this country would not be in the debt it is in today.

    The “one eyed Scottish idiot” strikes again even when not in power, his fiddling while London was burning has condemned us all to austerity measures.

    i do wonder if there is any mention of the ken Livingstone concentration camp incident? i would suggest then Jeremy should keep his job as ken has kept his position as labour candidate for London mayor.

    goodbye all

    the only way is capitalism

  3. chris blewitt

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  4. John Owen

    RT @leftfootfwd: How to be Jeremy Clarkson

  5. Kevin Gulliver

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  6. Roger Milton

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  7. Colin Waude

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  8. Amy

    Step by Step Guide to Being Jeremy Clarkson. Good deconstruction of how to get away with unacceptable jokes.

  9. Jayne Hornby

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  10. David Mullen68

    What Clarkson has said probably reflects the thinking of a number of tory MPs.

  11. James Stewart

    Now you can be Jeremy Clarkson too, with @leftfootfwd's handy step-by-step guide!:

  12. Paul B

    In the interest of balance to my last tweet, this is an excellent article about Clarkson's approach and style…

  13. Conor Linehan

    Step by Step Guide to Being Jeremy Clarkson. Good deconstruction of how to get away with unacceptable jokes.

  14. Lion

    Very witty. It seems you enjoyed that a little too much though didn’t you? Especially the Korean theme that ran through it. I certainly did, and my wife is Korean, which goes to show that us lefties do have a sense of humour. What I’m saying is that you have just pointed that Clarkson is a funny man, it’s just not easy for everyone to separate different aspects of a personality i.e. Clarkson’s undeniable wit from his undoubtedly vile politics. A lightening up of the left in terms of political correctness would do us the power of good.

  15. Lion

    It’s good to see some well-reasoned, on-topic, high brow right wing prose here. Keep it up Mr White, you’re doing a stellar job.

  16. Tom White

    ‘Undeniable wit’? Er… possibly. If you are aged 10.

  17. Lion

    He is childish and rude but then so is Jeremy Paxman. Clarkson occupies the space vacated by Chris Evans and Danny Baker. Noone questioned their politics when they were out on their ‘laddish’ benders with Gazza (the wife-beater). I would also point out that jokes about eating dogs go down pretty well in Korea, where most men of Clarkson’s ilk tuck in on a regular basis. In fact, ‘sweating like a dog on a hot day’ refers to the time of year when Koreans pack restaurants to enjoy their stamina food. So the Korea jokes are valid. I’ll reiterate though, that I can’t stand him or any of the Chipping Horton fascists. Silvio Berlosconi is also apparently a very funny man, yet a fascist creep. Let’s hope they are both sweating like dogs.

  18. Alex Hern

    @MissEllieMae Particularly proud of this piece re: Clarkson, especially step 4.

  19. David Mullen68

    When are you going to do an article about Trevor Kavanagh of the Sun. He comes out with some pretty inflammatory stuff about immigrants, unemployed people, unions, public sector workers,citizens of other EU countries. In short he would be a good object of ridicule.

  20. Bryn

    #bestoftheweek #3: How to be Jeremy C****son:

  21. Mersey Monkey

    #bestoftheweek #3: How to be Jeremy C****son:

  22. Tony Burke

    RT @leftfootfwd: How to be Jeremy Clarkson

  23. Stuart Freedman

    #bestoftheweek #3: How to be Jeremy C****son:

  24. Gareth Bickerton

    RT @leftfootfwd: #bestoftheweek #3: How to be Jeremy C****son:

  25. hannah slade

    I don’t care what this superbly payed thick idiot do & say for living, I just don’t want this moron get payed with my license fee, especially I don’t even like or watch, this bigoted,bias so called BBC. I would like to sign a e- petition against the BBC license fee I wish I knew how?


    RT @leftfootfwd: How to be Jeremy Clarkson – Its even easier than rock music. Safe! Let's get rich innit….XDDDDDDD

  27. Sean PdeC

    #bestoftheweek #3: How to be Jeremy C****son:

  28. Neil A

    RT @leftfootfwd: How to be Jeremy Clarkson

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