Slate’s homepage editors spend a lot of time looking for editorial photos to put on our site. Those searches sometimes yield unexpected results: random, perplexing, and mesmerizing photos that don’t belong on the home page, but that are too good not to share. Every week, we’ll publish the weirdest photo from the wires.
I recently came across an utterly brilliant photo of Boris Johnson that is straight out of a children’s vocab book. This March snapshot of Johnson at a primary school in Stoke-on-Trent, England, should be universally distributed to kids as a lesson in political skepticism, artistic composition, and the importance of an independent press corps.
This discovery led me down a rabbit hole to see what else Johnson is up to. After conducting a thorough analysis of the Tory leader’s activities, I reached a startling conclusion: The British prime minister appears to be living in a Richard Scarry book. I hesitate to tarnish the memory of early childhood classics like Best Word Book Ever and What Do People Do All Day? with this man’s destructive buffoonery, but the people deserve to know that the leader of the United Kingdom is a resident of Busytown.
Apparently, when you’re not busy hammering out the details of breaking up with the European Union, the British prime ministership consists of a never-ending series of storybook photo-ops. He’s on a boat; he’s on a train. He’s in a factory; he’s in a school. He’s holding a kipper; he’s holding a potted plant. It’s all simplistic enough for a small child to understand, complete with plenty of props and uniform changes.
Let’s take a look at Boris’ very busy day.
Where is Boris? He needs to get going—there’s a lot to do as prime minister!
Boris has lots of friends besides Donald. He likes to play with them.
Not everyone is friends with Boris. That’s part of living in a society.
Uh-oh, there’s a pandemic going on, but Boris gives a thumbs-up to let you know things are A-OK.
How do the scientists make the vaccine? They use petri dishes and a microscope. Boris works in the laboratory, but there are some bumps in the road. How will Boris make this better?
Boris likes to build, build, build. He uses his big drill to fix things, but sometimes he breaks them instead. Oops!
Boris stays active. Sometimes you win, and sometimes you lose, but what matters is how you play the game.
Boris draws a still life. He shows the class his work. Take a look at that man and his bananas!
After all that activity, it’s time to eat. What the heck is on the menu?
What will Boris get up to next?