by Steve Cook
The general consensus was that the title was a sign of unashamed hubris on the part of the inhabitants of our sceptred isles and not, some alleged, entirely accurate - although the accuracy or otherwise of the Brits describing their country as “great” was agreed to be a matter of opinion. Said opinion was discovered to be divided evenly between those who think it is accurate (the Brits) and those who think it isn’t (everybody else).
It was also generally agreed that everybody is entitled to their opinion, except when it is wrong, rightness and wrongness being fairly and even-handedly arbitrated by the Americans.
The Russian ambassador said that, “While we are all sure that Britain is a very fine country, can the Brits really claim it is better than everywhere else as the name suggests?”
To this, the British Ambassador was quick to respond with: “Yes we can.”
A heated debate followed in which efforts were made to get the British government to change the name of its country to something less irritating. Many were in favour of calling it simply “Britain”, leaving out the “Great” bit, while the French and Australians demanded a break with tradition suggesting Royaume Rosbif and Pommyland respectively.
When no amount of persuasion could induce the Brits to change the name of their country to something more modest, it was decided that all the other countries would change theirs instead.
Thus, France is now called La France Formidable, Belgium is Brilliant Belgium, Canada becomes Cool Canada.
The Scots decided to call their homeland Not England.
The Australians went for God’s Own Earth, while USA is now called The United States of Awesomeness.