Shazia's week

Revealed: Tony Blair was the sixth Spice Girl

Tony Blair was our first metrosexual celebrity prime minister; he had enough personality to be gay, yet caused enough atrocities to be straight. He was the sixth Spice Girl. It was easy to warm to Tony; he had a great smile, the smile that crashed a thousand F-117s. He seemed fun; he played You Say We Pay on Richard and Judy, and told Catherine Tate that he wasn't bovvered. He appealed to young people from all classes, and cultivated the common touch - which enabled him to communicate with George Bush.

But when a prime minister retires - that's when we really find out what he's like. That is when the skeletons come out of the closet. That is when we discover that Tony Blair has been conducting a rampaging affair with Ann Widdecombe in Margaret Beckett's caravan, and she in her biography reveals all about his black leather thongs, whips, chains and handcuffs tucked away under the picnic chairs - which perhaps offer an explanation for that permanent grin. Then Cherie will cause further stir by agreeing to an interview with Martin Bashir and disclosing: "There was too much Bush in this marriage. It got a bit crowded." That's when we'll get to know the real Tony.

The Queen will of course invest him with the usual honour for a departing prime minister, and bestow upon him the title "Lord Blair of Baghdad". The going rate for this title is £2m - so Tony can afford it. He'll soon become the darling of the after-dinner speakers' circuit, charming corporate fat cats with tales of wars and peerages as they tuck into their crèmes brûées.

Thinking back to the 1980s, I realise that Margaret Thatcher was a far more divisive figure than Blair, because 50 per cent of the country hated her - while 95 per cent hate him. Unity is always welcome, but this seems unfair; Blair certainly had convictions. It would take an incredible amount of self-belief for me to go it alone and start a war knowing that most of my colleagues didn't support me. Maybe he heard voices from God? Or maybe he'd just dozed off with his Bluetooth headset on and George had called. Sometimes I hear voices from God telling me to do naughty things, but when I wake up, I make a conscious effort to stay away from ricin, planes and the fertiliser section at B&Q. Sometimes it's good to doubt your imaginary friend.

Blair had real qualities. Maybe we won't fully realise his greatness until after he's gone? But it's time to move on: time, as it were, for a regime change.

I can't believe that anyone other than a delusional, megalomaniac grocer could think Prince Philip is a murderer. He's a lovely man. I was invited to meet him last year, and we got on great. He asked me what I did; I told him I was a comedian. "Marvellous!" he replied. "Do you have any funny stories?" I said: "No - but I've got a few racist jokes. Maybe you'd like to hear them?" So we had a competition to see who could tell the most racist jokes, and of course - he won. Tactless maybe, but a murderer definitely not.

Despite my brush with royalty, I haven't bumped into Tony Blair recently, but perhaps, now he's not going to be quite so busy, we may bump into each other some day on Celebrity Weakest Link . . .

Shazia Mirza

Shazia Mirza is an award-winning stand up comedian. In 2003 she was named by The Observer as one of the 50 funniest acts in British comedy. Since 2006 she has written a fortnightly column for the New Statesman, for which she won Columnist of the Year at the PPA Awards.

This article first appeared in the 14 May 2007 issue of the New Statesman, What now?