Not Amused

10.17.12

Jeremy Hunt Jokes With Queen, Queen Doesn't Laugh

Did you hear the one about the politician who tried to joke with the Queen?

When it comes to jokes and the Queen, the rule is, the Queen does the joking, you do the laughing.

This is a lesson that the UK's Health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has now learnt.

Chef Heston Blumenthal and Secretary Jeremy Hunt Meet Queen Elizabeth
Chef Heston Blumenthal and Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt meet Queen Elizabeth II as they attend a reception at Buckingham Palace hosted by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh for those who made the regional, national and international Diamond Jubilee celebrations events to remember on October 16, 2012 in London, England. (Lewis Whyld, WPA Pool / Getty Images)

Mr Hunt - who was culture secretary during the London Olympics, and shot to fame when a bell he was ringing flew out of his hand nearly hitting a tourist - met the monarch at a Buckingham Palace reception to thank those involved in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, and he unwisely tried to start a humorous conversation, recalling her involvement in the opening ceremony short film with James Bond, aka Daniel Craig.

He told her: "I read about a Japanese tourist who said afterwards how wonderful our Queen must be to take part in that as they would never get their emperor to jump out of the plane."

The Queen looked at him blankly, smiled and shrugged her shoulders politely as she turned and moved on.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Mr Hunt was then approached by her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, who 'in typically blunt fashion', asked him, "Who are you?"

Mr Hunt - who was wearing a large name badge to add insult to injury - explained that while he was currently health secretary, he had been culture secretary at the time of the Jubilee and Olympics.

"Well they do move you people on a lot," the Duke said, and walked away.

Ouch.