Friday, November 27, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Ok he may be Managing Director of the highest profile consultancy practice in Ireland but there was a time when we were afraid to put him up in front of strangers. In dem days you'd be seriously afraid he might vomit all over the boardroom table.
This sad picture was taken in Donegal one Easter weekend when the management consultant's cousin was too busy passing around the collection box to help the drunken one into the car. Gerry and myself helped out, thereby gathering valuable brownie points to buy the Ryan family's silence one particular evening many years later. More to come.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
As Christmas approaches my mind always drifts to festive cheer, snow-covered landscapes, laughing children and of course UK satirical and slightly anarchic band, Half Man Half Biscuit. This Tranmere Rovers loving quintet grew to prominence in the mid 80's and penned a number of little known classics detailing the minutiae of everyday life on Merseyside.
An undisputed classic is their tribute to early boyhood adolescence "All I want for Christmas is the Dukla Prague away kit" - a not unreasonable if slightly unexpected request from a kid of 13. Not only does the song define what the lad wants for Christmas but it also perfectly flags two of the abject but certain disappointments of childhood - the Scalextric set that didn't work and the headless centre-forward in Subbuteo.
I just love the concept of him wrecking the place when four down - all of them hotly disputed penalties of course.
This is a picture of the boys at Prenton Park, Birkenhead. At least they didn't support Everton or Liverpool.
Do you remember the carefree days of football cards? "Getting the set" was an important challenge to us devotees and there always seemed to be a few cards that were impossible to get your hands on. It's funny how the gaping hole in the album seemed to mock you every time you opened the West Bromwich Albion page, and Jeff was missing.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
I'd live with scarlet Majors at the Base,
And speed glum heroes up the line to death.
You'd see me with my puffy petulant face,
Guzzling and gulping in the best hotel,
Reading the Roll of Honour.
"Poor young chap," I'd say -- "I used to know his father well;
Yes, we've lost heavily in this last scrap."
And when the war is done and youth stone dead,
I'd toddle safely home and die -- in bed.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
There's very little more than can be said about the cheating that took place on Wednesday and the unacceptable attitude of the French and their supposed "role model" Thierry Henry. But so what, worth another little rant. The manner of their victory sums up their approach to life - they are arguably the most arrogant, pompous and hateful nation in Europe with few if any redeeming features. Their persistent denial of the need to embrace the English language, their misguided belief that they in some way contributed to the development of liberty, equality and fraternity, and their singular love of the croissant (tossers) show them for what they are - a nation of self-centred, egotistical wankers most at home when playing with themselves.
Practice what you preach, you bunch of hateful tossers.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
11am on the 11 November 1918.
I searched for pictures or artwork showing the opposing sides playing football on Christmas Day 1914 but nothing jumped out at me. I also searched in vain for a report on the match which the Germans won on penalties, despite having gone a goal down to a hotly disputed goal (in off the butt of a rifle), awarded by a Russian Kaiser who was miles off the play in downtown Volvograd.
Football - the global game. Choose football. Choose life.
Monday, November 2, 2009
Not for us the lights and wretched fumblings of the dance floor, the lines on the cistern in the toilets, the dancing on the barstools as we lurched uneasily from adolescence to marriage (from one carer to another) - no we had cards. cards, cards and more fucking cards.
Ok I did it for the money (a nice little earner) and for a small number it killed a few hours between study shifts but what did it say about the perennial losers? Why did they keep coming back for more? Only Bob Hudson (RIP) had an excuse - like Cinderella he did it to get away from the ugly sisters, and Nuala's endless stories of Fenit - but for the rest it bordered on masochism.
Still we needed Garret's money badly and Art's contribution for the first hour or so was always welcome. After losing all his money, he repeatedly lapsed into incredulous adoration at the way Gerry pushed the cards up and down the table. Simple, simple pleasures from simple, simple people.