The 21 Most Ed Balls Things That Happened In 2013

It started with a tweet but no one thought it would come to this. Ed Balls.


2013 was a momentous year for Ed Balls. The inaugaural Ed Balls Day celebrated two years since the fateful day that Ed Balls made himself famous by tweeting his own name.

First, Ed Balls joined in.

Ed Balls


Ok, ok.. Because it would be rude not to..! RT @edballsmp: Ed Balls

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Then Ed Balls’ political advisor had a go.

Alex Belardinelli


Ed Balls

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And eventually Ed Balls’ wife joined the party.

Yvette Cooper


RT @edballsmp: Ed Balls

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For one afternoon the nation celebrated Ed Balls, together, as one.

After all that, just popping back out to our Ed Balls street party. Really brought the community together.

— Isabel Hardman (@IsabelHardman)

Isabel Hardman


After all that, just popping back out to our Ed Balls street party. Really brought the community together.

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All of this heralded a new era in Ed Balls. Here’s a timeline of his miraculous year.

1. March: Ed Balls spurns George Osborne’s advances on the Andrew Marr Show sofa.

Handout / Reuters

There’s something in their body language but we can’t quite work out what it is.

2. April: Ed Balls fan fiction starts to appear on Mumsnet, then spreads onto the wider internet.

3. April: The Ed Balls translation tool makes its way around the world.

This bookmark briefly turned every page on the internet into Ed Balls.

4. April: Ed Balls makes it onto railway signs.

Sorry... But this is getting really wierd.. RT @FelicityMorse: Ed Balls makes it onto a train sign

— Ed Balls (@edballsmp)

Ed Balls


Sorry… But this is getting really wierd.. RT @FelicityMorse: Ed Balls makes it onto a train sign

/ Via

5. April: Ed Balls completes the London Marathon.

Chris Jackson / Getty Images

Members of the public turn up with “Ed Balls” signs and shout the shadow chancellor’s name from the sidelines. He also beat his namesake Edmund Balls in the 70+ age category.

6. April: Ed Balls auditions to be in Carly Rae Jepsen’s backing band.

Hey I just met you, and this is crazy, but here's my number, so Ed Balls maybe?

— Sam Liu (@SaiPang)

Sam Liu


Hey I just met you, and this is crazy, but here’s my number, so Ed Balls maybe?

/ Via

7. April: Ed Balls, the genesis story, is revealed to Prophet James Lyons of the Daily Mirror.

The phenomenon started at an Asda store in the Castleford constituency of his wife and fellow MP Yvette Cooper. An aide had urged Ed to search Twitter for an article mentioning him before hitting the aisles.

He was busy tracking down ingredients for a 12 hour pulled pork BBQ to celebrate the Royal Wedding when another panicked staff member rang.

The MP had accidentally hit one of the keys on the Blackberry phone he had slipped into his pocket and the Twitter app he was using tweeted the search.

8. April: Ed Balls’ local football team adopts his likeness on their shirts.

9. June: Ed Balls meets a girl on a pony on Oxford Street.

Getty Images

10. June: Ed Balls lends his name to a game that can help children learn typing skills.

100% official, we’re assured.

11. September: Ed Balls gives an enthusiastic performance in the annual politicians v journalists football match.

Mirrorpix / Splash News

12. September: Ed Balls consider whether he’s a happy cow or an angry tiger.

Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images

13. September: Ed Balls beomes a rule in the UK version of the ultra-rude game Cards Against Humanity.

Jim Waterson

14. November: Ed Balls starts to question what he’s doing in the House of Commons.

15. November: Ed Balls invents a new form of smoothie. In Swindon.


16. November: Ed Balls sneaks a Norwich City FC shirt onto US television.

17. December: Ed Balls plays piano live on the radio.

Balls had to cancel his Grade 3 exam to speak for Labour at the Autumn Statement. His piano teacher says he “takes the same approach to economic policy as he does piano.”

18. December: Ed Balls progresses from keyboard to a grand piano at a charity concert.

Amy T. Zielinski/Redferns / Getty

Truly astonishing.

19. December: Ed Balls-themed goods become the most desired present in stockings across the land.

@edballsmp look what I got for Christmas! This thing's got serious, Ed.. @yvettecoopermp

— Luke Rigg (@lukerigg)

Luke Rigg


@edballsmp look what I got for Christmas! This thing’s got serious, Ed.. @yvettecoopermp

/ Via

20. December: Ed Balls votes in the House of Commons while dressed as Father Christmas for a children’s party.

21. Or, as Ed Balls puts it himself, if you’re a Labour shadow chancellor then 2013 has been…


— Ed Balls (@edballsmp)

Ed Balls



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Jim Waterson is a politics editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
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