Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Quiz - where is this?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mise le Meas gets wet

Top marks again to Mise le meas who turned in a tremendous performance to finish in 4th place in the Liffey Swim.  And that's after letting all these fat cunts get away before him. 

The Ireland we want back

Great vantage point to welcome Katie Taylor home.  I'll give you a slap across the snot if you don't wise up.

Missing Mass on Sunday and feeling guilty

I too entered the Lager as a nonbeliever, and as a nonbeliever I was liberated and have lived to this day. Actually, the experience of the Lager with its frightful iniquity confirmed me in my nonbelief.  It has prevented me, and still prevents me, from conceiving of any form of providence or transcendent justice… I must nevertheless admit that I experienced (and again only once) the temptation to yield, to seek refuge in prayer.

This happened in October 1944, in the one moment in which I lucidly perceived the imminence of death… naked and compressed among my naked companions with my personal index card in hand, I was waiting to file past the ‘commission’ that with one glance would decide whether I should go immediately into the gas chamber or was instead strong enough to go on working.

For one instance I felt the need to ask for help and asylum; then, despite my anguish, equanimity prevailed: one does not change the rules of the game at the end of the match, nor when you are losing. A prayer under these conditions would have been not only absurd (what rights could I claim? and from whom?) but blasphemous, obscene, laden with the greatest impiety of which a nonbeliever is capable. I rejected the temptation: I knew that otherwise were I to survive, I would have to be ashamed of it.

Primo Levi, from "The Drowned and the Saved"

Here we go again

A few games into the Premiership and plaudits to Moyes and his bunch of journeymen at Goodison.  Two tremendous results reverses their normal early season form and must surely give them the confidence to push on and aim for a top six finish.

Good start for Leeds as welll, in a season which is likely to be challenging, if only because of the number of evenly matched teams in the Championship.  Play-offs beckon.

Poor start for Spurs and the unrest over AVB commences.  More modest sights have been set at the Lane than in pror years.  Will we finish above previously mediocre teams like Everton?

And finaly another good start for Chelski although not the hardest set of fixtures.  Closer inspection to come although if Torres keeps his shooting boots on maybe anything is possible.

How about this?

1. Man City
2. Chelsea
3. Man United
4. Arsenal
5. Liverpool
6. Newcastle
7. Spurs
8. Everton

Hit him a dig, Katie, he's taken your batterburger

So what of the Olympics?

Despite the introduction of some inappropriate sports (beach volleyball, tennis), and the continued indulgence of some others (football; show-jumping) I found the event remarkably refreshing.

Despite the hype and money undoubtedly associated with it, the event manages to maintain an amateur status which contrasts very pleasantly with the crass, vulgar and highly visible professionalism of the game I follow for months on end each year.  Certainly the arrival of the Premiership two days after the Olympics ended this year appeared tiresome and uninteresting, a new experience for me.

Perhaps it is the ordinary lives and backgrounds of many Olympians and their highly emotional public failures during the event that makes it so enticing but something kept drawing me back to watch the honest endeavours of swimmers, sailors, javelin throwers and marathon runners during the three weeks of the event.   Contrast that with the posturing and behaviour of modern day footballers and it's easy to become depressed at the state of soccer.

And what of our own Irish performances then?

Sadly this is where the romance ends and a degree of disillusionment sets in. With some notable exceptions, again it’s a story of our athletes underperforming – it beguiles me as to why a nation with the sporting history and interest that we have cannot produce one truly world class athlete, or even one who can compete consistently with the top 10 or 20 athletes in the world in his sport. It’s not as though we're new to running or throwing shot putts or we don’t have the facilities.  Cynically I’d be with the Roy Keane attitude on this one, if only he’d make a comment about something other than soccer.

And don’t give me that Katie Taylor and the boxers shite. I found the country’s infatuation with her to be grossly pathetic (nice girl though she is) and our dependence on medium weight boxers and reputationally tarnished show-jumpers to bring home a few medals to be a terrible indictment on the effectiveness of the IOC. Interesting – another organisation run almost dictatorially by a power crazed, money-hungry incompetent – similar to the FAI.

Perhaps to further our chances of more success next time out, we can extend the boxing into a triathlon - swilling pints, singing rebel songs and, then, boxing – sure Jesus we’d leather the arse off everyone if that was the line up in Rio in 2016.

And, thinking further ahead to 2020, by that stage we should have persuaded enough eleven and twelve year old girls to give up the Irish dancing and the embroidery and take up boxing to ensure we come away with a stack of medals. The seafront at Bray will never see the like of what we’ll send down there, straight from the airport.

So there you have it on the Olympics – great event, just a pity we had Katie Taylor stuck up our noses for so much of it.

Monday, August 27, 2012