The United Kingdom is a mysterious land of strange and unusual customs. Everything about the rainy and depressing island of Britain is alien to us. Every now and then, a news story emerges which reminds us of the inherent bizarreness of the UK, and here’s your example for this morning: chaos reigned in the House of Commons today after an MP grabbed the enormous ceremonial mace in a protest against the Brexit vote.

The mace, which represents the Queen’s authority in Parliament, sits at the centre of the room like a prop from a terrible swords-and-sandals fantasy epic. After the Conservative government announced they would not proceed with Brexit vote debate, Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle stood up, marched over to the mace, and picked it up.

(To be clear, technically Parliament cannot pass laws unless the mace is present. Yes, stupid country. Australia has a marginally less ostentatious mace also – we are also a stupid country.)

Watch the video. It is incredibly clear that he did not plan for what he was going to do after he got the mace. He had a rock-solid scheme worked out for grabbing the ancient weapon, and then one for holding it aloft like a king of old. But after that? Zip.

As you would imagine, a group of gargoyle-like old British MPs were very, very offended by this action. You can clearly hear many of them hooting, “Disgrace!” and, “Expel him!”

Russell-Moyle has tweeted a short statement about his protest:

Here’s the short version of the Brexit vote which inaugurated this mace-related chaos. Prime Minister Theresa May has hacked together a deal to actually make Brexit happen, after all the brouhaha of the past couple of years, but it is incredibly contentious and there’s not even broad agreement within her own party on it. The opposition is such, in fact, that May knew bringing it to a vote would result in a humiliating failure. So she didn’t. And now someone’s gone and picked up the mace.

Absolute scenes. Scenes!