ED2014 Columns ED2014 Comedy

Lizzie Bates: Five acts of everyday rebellion

By | Published on Saturday 23 August 2014

Lizzie Bates is no natural-born rebel, so she has been getting serious kicks out of performing a host of naughty female characters in her show ‘Lizzie Bates: Reprobates’.

Lizzie Bates

If you have neither the will nor the inclination to stick it to the man with big, flashy, obscene shows of rebellion, then fear not. Lizzie is here to school you in the ways of a humbler sort… the ‘everyday rebel’.

1. Steal tableware
When the food in a restaurant is overpriced or the service poor, rather than shouting at the waitress or
demanding to speak to the management, why not subtly smuggle those expensive salt and pepper shakers into your bag? If you’re really angry take the rest of the condiments, the frosted glass candleholder and the Egyptian cotton serviette too. Why not grab a reserved sign off a table on your way out? That will really put the cat amongst the pigeons. The same principles can be applied to a disappointing dinner party or family occasion.

2. Abuse the supermarket self-checkout system
Take a defiant stand against consumerism and the monopoly of the large supermarkets: trick the scales and put expensive loose non-barcoded items through as cheaper alternatives. Why not put courgettes through as carrots, or plantain through as regular bananas? Six satsumas can equate to one grapefruit. You’ll be literally stealing pennies from under their noses.

3. Grow your body hair
Ladies, show the hairy finger to The Man by letting your armpit hair grow into a downy mass, or by waiting that extra month to book a hairdresser appointment. Men, grow your facial hair until you have a small beard, or at least until someone in the office suggests you should shave.

4. Wreak invisible havoc in the office
If you’ve had enough of working hard with no recognition or thanks, why not open the office fridge and swig the milk straight out of the bottle; swap the contents of the decaf coffee jar for caffeinated or change your email signature so the office phone number is wrong – they’ll never spot it. If you’re feeling really daring, why not take the springs out of your boss’s stapler and fill his drawers with the little bits of paper that come out of a hole punch.

5. After an argument, hide stuff
If, for example, your partner or housemate irritates you, why not hide one of their favourite shoes in the bread bin? They will eventually give up trying to find it and will be forced to wear an inferior pair. Alternative scams include putting their car keys in the toilet cistern, or taping their golf clubs or tennis racket to the underside of the sofa.

‘Lizzie Bates: Reprobates’ was performed at the Pleasance Courtyard at Edinburgh Festival 2014.

PS: You do all or any of these things at your own risk. ThreeWeeks isn’t liable for firings, arrests or injuries that may or may not occur when you’re caught. And “Lizzie Bates told me to do it” isn’t a recognised defence in court. Well, not in Scotland anyway.