Thursday, March 22, 2007

A part-time fan speaks out - tonyellis

There’s something I have to say about the game of football, but first I should make a confession.

I love football, really I do, but you’re going to have to take my word for it; any tests you may care to set me, I should undoubtedly fail.

The fan loyalty test for example - It’s my wife’s birthday and she wants to go to Paris. Meanwhile, West Ham have at last realised their potential and are playing the final of the European Cup (sorry, ‘Champion’s League’ is such a misnomer) in Birmingham on the very day of said anniversary.

What do I do with the tickets to that final you are hypothetically about to offer me?

Simple: I ask my wife what she thinks; not because I’m worried about fighting over the custody of our two cats, but because I genuinely don’t want to disappoint her. And I rather like Paris myself.

The fact my wife quite likes football and she probably wouldn’t want to disappoint me on such a frankly unrepeatable occasion does not excuse me: I have failed the loyalty test simply by asking.

The other test of a professed football-lover is, of course, an in-depth statistical knowledge.

I’ll tell you now, I don’t have it; any more than I can tell you the number or name of the train which departs Huddersfield for London at 10:15 am. Number of FA cups? Easy. Scores? Of course; I can even tell you which part of his body Trevor Brooking scored with.

However, if I were asked the names of the goalscorers in that epic semi-final against Everton (there was one, wasn’t there? I’m sure I went to the dénouement at Elland Road), I have no idea. Did Frank Lampard get one? (Yes, of course I’ve googled all this: the point is that I had to).

If I cannot answer even these questions about my ‘own’ team, it would clearly be a complete waste of time to ask me, for example, to name the last 10 F.A. cup winners, let alone their squads.

Such failure on both theoretical and practical exams would naturally, and quite rightly, prevent me from taking unsupervised control of a car, but does it mean I should lose my license to enter debates on football?

Clearly it does for some bloggers and pub experts, for whom the right-to-comment exam is a pre-requisite for any conversation.

Well, I never claimed it was an exclusive love. I have loved West Ham ever since that victory over Preston North End by however many goals it was, and football from my first glimpses of Chelsea, Real Madrid and Brazil.

The problem is that I like lots of other things.

Now I’m as renaissance as the next man, but if I have to display an encyclopaedic knowledge of them all before I’m ‘allowed’ to give an opinion, I’ll be too busy cramming to form one.

Anyway, about my comment. It concerns the current obstruction laws and what is known as ‘shepherding the ball out of play’. I fucking hate that.

86 comments:

andrewm said...

tony, I know exactly what you mean. In fact I was working on an article just like this last week, only mine was crap so I binned it.

On your last point, we briefly had a rule at my school that you had to try and keep the ball in play at all times if you possibly could, even if it was going out for a throw to your team. That was a shit rule, but something should be done.

greengrass said...

Tony,
yes - "shepherding" knackers the entertainment value.
We could improve entertainment by allowing the opposing player to attack the "shepherd" in any way he chooses.
Greengrass

Ebren said...

I think that they should only be allowed to shepherd if they have a crook, a border collie and a small flock.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bgp5s1gqi8

Jelley said...

Tony, I couldn't agree more. Christ, if I could only comment on what I have a depth of knowledge of, I wouldn't be talking very much!

Besides, football chat should be about opinions, both informed and not, and to be honest much of informed opinion on the various sports pages is absolute rubbish.

I like ebren's ideas regarding shepherding, but at the same time if it's my team defending a one goal league, i'll happily watch them shepherd the ball out time and time again!

MotM said...

Tricky.

I'm happy to talk football with anyone, but I dislike it intensely when the likes of Marina write about football without the necessary hinterland of knowledge and experience of the game. It means that I spend time reading froth when I want depth. Does that make me a football snob?

Some of it is related to priorities. Until parenthood, almost nothing - no, let's face it - nothing would trump the chance to see Everton play. You kind of pay your dues at Barnsley in the FA Cup, at Chelsea in the 87 run in etc and you feel a twinge of resentment towards those that haven't.

Here's an example. I hate the shepherding the ball away - it's obstruction and an indirect free kick. But I love a full-blooded celebration of a goal - at the match it's great; on the telly it looks infantile. So I resent those who only watch TV football complaining about celebrations.

Finally, personally, keep writing Tony - yours is good stuff.

Jelley said...

where 'league' = 'lead'

Ebren said...

Wow motm - I've never heard of a Steve Martin film affecting someone like that before ;o)

Love the final line btw Tony.

Jelley said...

motm: Anyone who complains about celebrations obviously has no idea about the emotions involved in football, regardless of whether they're on the terraces every week or sat in the comfort of their living room. But i'd still defend their right to discuss football matters (including celebrations). I mean, tehre are people who go to football every week who believe fans shouldn't be allowed to stand, but if you ask a lot of those involved in Stand Up Sit Down they'll say 'real' fans would want to stand. I know this is the case at Cov anyway.

Erm, point? Oh yeah, I guess i'm just trying to say that opinions on football can be based on a whole plethora of things, and that's why discussing it interests us so much, you never know where a discussion is going to go!

MotM said...

Ebren - Are you implying that I'm "The Jerk"? I do have that same sense of rhythm though.

Margin said...

A lack of facts don't lead to bad articles - they come from a lack of understanding. And plenty of fully versed and commited fans lack that.

So here is a better criteria, at least for english writers. Anyone who thinks the first should be blocked from giving views, anyone who thinks the second should write.

The 1966 world cup final was

1 - one of the greatest days in football history, capping a brilliant tournament.
2 - a second rate and uninspiring match full of mishaps and scandal that perfectly summed up the nature of the tournament that year.

pipita said...

tonyellis

I regard myself as a full-time football fan. Although, much like yourself, I would most likely end up going with my wife to Paris even if River Plate were playing a major cup final at the same time. Difference with your case I suppose is that my mind would be fixated to that match, and I wouldnt have a moments peace until receiving information on its outcome, even if I happen to be in the middle of the most amazing exhibition at the Louvre. Im not the type who would travel, to quote Hormby, to Plymouth for a tuesday night cup replay, but I am the type who is obsessed with facts and figures, and could spend a whole day chatting about memorable matches of the past. Nevertheless, I dont consider this to be an indispensable ingredient for someone to be considered a fan. Having said all this, I must say that in many ways I feel identified with your very stimulating essay, essencially because I also like many other things as well

reemgear said...

If it was your wedding day, fair enough. Otherwise...

Honestly, this could come down to the fact that you're too nice a guy: nothing to do with football.

Sheparding the ball is a triumph of crappness over worthy endeavour.

Statistics are bollox and irrelevant; the magic is in the subjective memory: hence myths and legends.

reemgear said...

By the way - for some reason there is no apostrophe in Champions League.

I notice you added one...

Jelley said...

"The magic is in the subjective memory: hence myths and legends"

Possibly my favourite line of the day, applicable to virtually everything

tony ellis said...

andrewm - It was a discussion on GU with you (I think) which inspired this. I confessed that my visits to cif were due to a love of debate (or banter!)combined with a lack of 'in depth' knowledge about football.
mouth - thanks very much for your kind words. We're obviously not going to agree about ms H., though. I think there's lots of stuff on GU for people to engage with on a more serious level. What you call 'froth' is manna for people like me.
Knowledge and feeling are two different things. For example, I like crumpets to such an extent that I have researched them and experimented with many recipes. If you want to tell me that summerfield's are far better than clegg's the baker's version, I won't test your knowledge of the difference between a crumpet and a pikelet: I'll rush off to summerfield's. Then I'll tell you were talking shit....
sorry about the crap example - am feeling a little weird today...

People who watch tv celebrations and complain are annoying with or without an in-depth knowledge: it's a beautiful part of the beautiful game (apart from those obviously planned ones).

ebren - thanks, although I was rather pleased with the 'renaissance as the next man' part myself.

MotM said...

I was in Venice with a friend back in the 80s. I enjoy the spectacle and the art as much as anyone, but we ended up watching Venezia draw 0-0 in a cup-tie. She was pleased about the punch-up and red card (that's on the pitch, I hasten to add!)

Having fessed up to that, I have no problem at all spending Saturday afternoon at the match and Saturday evening at the theatre. When the Seagram Murals were at Tate Liverpool, I paid homage to the genius of Rothko for a contemplative half-hour or so, then jumped on the bus to Goodison.

Sometimes it's either / or, but often it's both.

pipita said...

Margin

Find it somewhat amusing you should say that about the 66 final. When I had a chance to see the whole of that England-WGermany clash, typically screened by the bbc just before the 90 WC, I was quite surprised to find myself actually enjoying the quality of the game. Like yourself, I always had this pre-conceived idea that it had basically been a totally scrappy affair

MotM said...

Pipita - I watched the whole of the 66 Final three or four years ago and, while the game was slow, the play had an elegance and grace missing from the athletes today. I liked it (and the result).

tony ellis said...

reemgear - thanks for telling me. I think I was probably over here when 'Champions league' was coined. The Spanish translation suggests the possessive case and I obviously followed that. Seems more elegant, don't you think?

pipita said...

Mouth

Exactly. Incredibly slow for todays standards, but full of high quality skill. As much as I dislike the germans,I'll never feel too happy about the result judging by what had happened to Argentina in the quarter finals against you guys, but I admired watching the quality of players such as beckenbauer, overath, moore, our beloved alan ball off course, etc in that game

reemgear said...

Tony, I can barely spell let alone get into the building blocks of correct language usage, but I do agree with you!

As for 'over here' - over where? I'm in France and you are either in Spain or Britain.

Are, the joys of the internet...

Forgot to say; enjoyed your article.

BlueinBetis said...

Tony,

A lovely piece, and the apostrophe, well, "the panda says, 'yes!'"

I confess to getting married on cup final day, so was almost happy when Liverpool knocked us out, almost. Then, the Liverpool fans, and by god there are a lot of them here, started to sing, "you´ll never walk alone," just to spite them, I walked home, alone. Phackers.

tony said...

Spain, reemgear. I escaped asboland 16 years ago next April 15th. Where in France?

Jelley said...

In order to gauge public (well, bloglic) interest, how would everyone feel about an article based on how the Midlands clubs are beginning to show a great deal more potential than they have for a long time? I was thinking something based mainly around the trials and tribulations of Coventry, Leicester, Aston Villa and Birmingham, but with mentions of Derby, West Brom and to a lesser extent Forrest.

I've been toying with the idea of writing it, but don't wish to bore people unnecessarily! Of course, even if you say yes, and I do write it, you may well still be bored, depending my ability to pen (pad?) a decent article!

tony said...

thanks blue inbetis. I don't think my defence of part-timers includes you: my wife's birthday is beyond my control whereas you, presumably, had some say in it. Unless you're a 'new man', of course ;0.
Are you in Sevilla?

Margin said...

pipita and motm

The game was fun to watch last time I watched it, though I put that partly down to me being English and slightly drunk.

However, neither team really settled into a rhythm, and some really classy footballers involved in that final failed to perform as well as we should expect from names like (from England's perspective) Moore and Charlton.

andrewm said...

Jelley, I'd be interested in that. A lot more interested than people will be in my forthcoming Scotland article anyway.

I'm also penning a memorial to GU, which is incredibly obvious and will cover a lot of ground we've already done to death, but bollocks I'm posting it anyway.

MotM said...

Jelley - I don't speak for Pseudscorner, but I think it's open house here in the Tap Room. The question is less "will it be fun to read" so much as "will it be fun to write". Of course the former often follows the latter.

Jelley said...

Are you going to send it to the Sports Editor at the Guardian as well Andrewm? Just in case he likes it and whacks it the sportsblog? hahaha

Look forward to reading it

Hmmn, now I jsut have to get on my ass and write the bloody thing, as the king of pracrastination I can think of 20 things that I need to do urgently...

pipita said...

Margin

Agree with you about bobby charlton's underpar performance in that final. In a way, I think one can establish an interesting parallel there with Maradona's display in the 86 final. Im sure many poeple here wouldnt admit this, but el diego barely reached a 6-7 out of ten in that game...

Jelley

I think that can make for an interesting piece. When I was Remember growing up in the midlands area in the 70's I remember that most teams of that area were playing in the old first division, so it amazes me to see the likes of NForrest, Wolves, WBA, Coventry, Leicester, Derby Co, etc all playing in the lower divisions these days

greengrass said...

Tony,
people who know a lot about something once knew sod all.
People who know a lot should be as happy as pigs in shit when confronted by people who know a little - it gives them a chance to either
a) show off, or
b) help someone learn.
People like Marina Hyde - who don't know much but get paid for writing it down - should not be encouraged.

Greengrass

Ebren said...

I quite like the fact the championship has become a Midlands' regional league. On some level it makes me happy.

Looks like we're losing three London sides this year - so maybe its time for a Midlands comeback now that we have a Yorkshire team in the prem again.

Marina Hyde should always be encouraged. Especially in her role as a TV personality commenting on celebrity sex tapes.

Jelley said...

The thing is, in terms of investment the Midlands (with the slight exception of Brum) has been overlooked. But in the last ten years, this has started to be addressed. So places like Cov, Leics, Derby, etc. are all in periods of massive regeneration. This is only just beginning to shift over to their football teams, through the buyouts of Villa and Leics, and the summer sale of Cov to an American consortium.

If the investment in the squads of these clubs is as much as has been touted, then they'll achieve a level of success they've been lacking for a long time.

I'm not saying Cov or Leics will win the CL or anything, but they might well push to mid Prem cup team in 5 years. Which is better than lower Championship dredge football

BlueinBetis said...

Sevilla, no, no, no. I'm in Baetica. Capital city Italica. The place where the Emperor Hadrian (inventor of the wall, later populised by Pink Floyd) comes from.

Yes, okay. Sevilla. The club with "evil" in it.

They won't win the league you know. Or the cup. Either of them.

BlueinBetis said...

Careful Jelley, or you won't need to write it.

Jelley said...

Very true! Apologies!

tony said...

jelley and andrew - think no more, just write it. You'll feel better. If it's well-received you'll write more, if not, maybe you'll learn from any criticism. Oh dear, does that sound all workshoppy? Anyway, as gg points out, even Shakespeare knew sod all about writing at one point...

GG - like your solution to shepherds. Pity we can't agree about Ms H. Still, she certainly keeps those comments coming...

tony said...

Oh no, I've just noticed that my apostrophe was misplaced! I meant Champions' league. It'd never have got through at GU...

chelseaexile said...

Nearly made a Sinatraesque comeback to the GU Blog a minute ago, but resisted.

Dear me, Marina Hyde... She's managed to make me feel sorry for Jamie Redknapp.

As I said to Fishcake the other week, if she only started her articles with, "I don't know anything about football, but..." I wouldn't mind so much.

Jelley said...

I think there's a place for MH's articles on football, but every now and then she does bore the hell out of me, I must admit! Still, it's easy to simply not comment on them unless someone takes the topic toward a more interesting place.

Does anyone else feel that the GU blogs have gone downhill drastically since Christmas?

PW75 said...

CE - I'm all alone on the Marina blog, and am starting to bore even myself.

Lovely piece btw Tony.

chelseaexile said...

Jelley, I've felt that too. I wondered if it might be that as a group we'd got used to the style of the writers and familiarity was breading contempt.

On reflection I think that the poularity of the Blogs took GU by surprise and they are struggling to find regular, high-quality content. Hence, I suppose, Ms Hyde.

fred said...

tony,
just nipped over and read Miss H. after reading your post.
She wasn't that bad at all - nowhere near as bad as when I stopped reading her, months ago.
Quite good, actually.
GG

fred said...

CE - familiarity doesn't always breed contempt.
When it comes to Marcela and Harry, increasing familiarity almost always seems to result in increased admiration.
When it comes to Russell...

GG

tony said...

thanks very much, PW. You'll never walk alone...

BTW any computer whizzes out there (or even a competent user) who can put me in touch with those tempting little html symbols which appear just above this box? I've been gagging for an italic ever since I discovered GU.

Jelley said...

How nice to be able to call on a group to join a fairly dull blog so quickly!

You realise though that this does definitely constitute the formation of a clique of sorts? I feel dirty for even saying that word these days you know

Emma said...

Very good article, and I know exactly what you mean. I've only started liking football since the World Cup in 2006 because I liked Crouch (I know, how gay), and I only chose Chelsea to follow around Christmas time when they were playing craply, so I'm a much crappier fan than you are!

I had a Spanish mock on Tuesday, and on Monday night, I was watching Chelsea play. It was a decent match and all, but then after, I totally regretted watching it because I knew I could have spent that time revising. Given the choice again, I know which one I'd make. As for football knowledge? Pah, don't have *any*. And I've been to the ground all of... five times in my life.

There's also the case of movies, which I love more. Football is starting to find a place in my life, but I'll never be a genius about it because my opinions are just that: opinions. I would love to be a better fan, and maybe, after my A-levels, I will!

Emma said...

Just a demonstration of how little I knew about football pre-World Cup, I thought that Bayern Munich was the sequel to Munich and Stewart Downing was the guy who designed Tony Blair's place of residence. Ho hum.

Emma said...

And MouthofMersey (I think that's you), I do know what you mean about Marina. She just blags and drops in big words that she learnt in her years at Oxford, and talks about the Wags, or whatever. That's not journalism!

PW75 said...

Jelley

'99!'

tony said...

emma - I had a North American mock on GU a few days ago and was accused of racism.

Glad you liked it.

andrewm said...

tony, two articles nearly done. God help you all :)

guitougoal said...

Tonyellis, your opinion with or without knowledge is always valuable.I know what i am talking about since I have no knowledge at all.
Pseud's, ebren,andrewn, geen grass etc...from las vegas:the rumor here is that the Ban on GU will do for blogging what prohibition did for alcohol,people wants more of Pseudo's.
The Bookies accept now bets on Pseudo's corner at 2 to 1.

reemgear said...

Oh no, I've just noticed that my apostrophe was misplaced! I meant Champions' league. It'd never have got through at GU...
---------
Oh yeah!
Actualy, it should be league of the champions, but apparently us Brits have included inanimate objects into our possesive, er, I don't really know what I'm talking about.
Pseud's corner indeed...

Oh and I'm near Carcassonne, since you ask. I moved here a few years ago and have returned to the sceptic isle once - for a funeral. :)

Jelly, just write your article. You'll soon find out whether it was "worthy" or not!

offside said...

tony,

"There's something I have to say... shepherding the ball out of play... I fucking hate that" + a 484-word digression?

There's something I have to say: I love your structure!

Keep them coming. Especially the digressions.

mimi said...

Emma: I've just committed my sin of skim reading again, and thought you had a Spanish Monk on Friday!
Tonyellis: really enjoyed this, as one who has only had to embrace football in order to converse in an interested way with some fiendishly fannish friends, I so appreciate this thing of not being an expert but enjoying following one's chosen club.
The comments around "shepherding" brought back nightmare memories of when my dog used to run onto the field of play in public parks and steal any ball running loose. He had a large mouth and could even seize a rugby ball.
Oh the shame!

bluedaddy said...

Did anyone see that story that they were digging a ditch for cable TV near Anne Hathaway's cottage and found the skeletons of thousands and thousands of chimpanzees. Too many to count apparently.

I always thought that Shakespeare bloke seemed to be able to bang that stuff out a bit too quickly.

offside said...

bluedaddy,

the CSI team have set their handwriting experts to work on Shakespeare's works and the results are conclusive: all of his plays were written by Molière's cat.

MocneJim said...

Well Tone I think you've proved to us all that you are a normal fan. I just hope yer missus (as fortunately mine would) would chose the cup final.

As fer shepherding the ball out, well, thats fine. It just leads me to the article someone has already written and I havent noticed/should write/ I cant be arsed writing which is that referees should enforce every bloody rule and not just some!

Striker shoots, ball going wide, and 1.5 seconds later a centre back cripples them with a one footed attempt at the ball = penalty and yellow card. Goal keeper does it with his whole body = dead ball

Obstuction in the penalty box = penalty OR no foul

Obstruction outsite the box = foul/direct free kick

Does the keeper still only have 6 seconds? Did he used to only have 4 steps?

Do 53.28% of refs have to NOT book anyone but warn them not to do it again until the first yellow card in the 56th minute and then book everyone who even breathes near another player?

I could go on but it might spoil someone's article

All the best
MocneJim

offside said...

bluedaddy,

not sure those findings are very conclusive after all. The latest handwriting analyses have come in and it seems all of Shakespeare's sonnets were written by greengrass, so...

mimi said...

Offside: damn, the expert I've just paid a fortune to, says they're all written by MouthoftheMersey!

MocneJim said...

I was down the local the other day when ths Shakespear walks in and asks if I'd heard the one about the pianist...........

There's a bar with a piano but no one to play it. And the barman decides the bar will be a better place with live music so he puts a notice up, PIANIST WANTED.

Anyway, a couple of days later a man walks into the bar and says, "I've come about the advert, you fucking prick"!

The barman's slightly taken aback by the man's aggressive attitude but he decides to give him a chance and asks him to play something. So the man sits down at the piano and plays one of the most beautiful pieces of music the barman's ever heard.

"That was lovely", the barman says, "What's that piece called"?

"Come all over my fucking massive tits, motherfucker", replies the man.

The barman's slightly shocked and he also thinks that maybe that first piece was a fluke so he asks the man to play one more tune just to be sure. And the man plays a piece of music so beautiful that the barman's in tears by the end of it.

"What's that called"? sniffs the barman.

"Fuck me up the shitter with a strap on dildo until my arse bleeds, cunt features", the man says.

And the barman thinks that although the songs have got strange titles the man can certainly play the piano, so he gives him the job.

Anyway, all goes well for a while. The man plays his piano beautifully and the atmosphere in the bar's better and the customers are happy and profits are up. Then one day a strikingly attractive woman sits at the table in front of the piano and the pianist finds that he can't stop looking at her and his piano playing skills start to disappear. And the more he looks at her the more distracted he gets and the worse he plays. In the end he decides that he needs to sort out the situation so he goes to the bog and wanks himself off to calm down a bit.

When he returns to the bar he's about to sit down at the piano again when the attractive woman calls out to him,

"Excuse me but do you know your knob's hanging out and dripping with cum"?

"Know it"? exclaims the man. "I only fucking wrote it, you bitch"!
-----------------------------------

It's funny what you think of when your stuggling to write a kids football story set on the west coast of Scotland

xx

kokomo said...

ok, loved this article tony, very well written, from a consistently really good contributor.

I went to the ballet tonight, and during some of the sword fighting (The Three Musketeers), I was thinking how much i would rather be there than watching england lose to fucking isreal on saturday. I'm not sure what that says about me, cause i know more stats than is good for me, but i am falling out of love with sport this week - going to write about it i think.

Incidentally, i am taking my son to see a film about a boy who can't watch the 66 cup final cause it clashes with his bar mitsvah (sp?) on saturday, instead of watching the england match.

Not sure why that's relevant, but it seems like it must be...

mimi said...

mocne: hum, well. Did you get the strangely spelt gaelic names I put up on the other strand for you?

MocneJim said...

mimi

Sorry and sorry no I didn't. Which strand? Been busy ferrying kids about and picking the missus up from the airport today. No rest for the wicked daddy-husband.

Komoko

I think missing England with such a grandios excuse is unnecessary, A simple, "who gives a fuck", does for me. I'd much rather be down the park wi both mine unless its raining then I'll be at grandma and granddad's by the open fire helping him have an excuse to miss it an all.

Anyway, if all else fails then I'm sure your lass is up for a fingr fight or a bit of kabadi or summat. Or is she going soft in her old age? :o)

mimi said...

Mocne: can't remember now, but a quick check through last night's comments in the top 5 or so pieces will find it. If you can't, post back here and I'll search and copy.

tony ellis said...

Ebren - some of these posters are off topic. I demand you obliterate them now!
How nice to see so many names from GU and generous you've been....

Goutigoal are you claiming to know less than me? I challenge you to an ignorance competition.

Andrew - shut up and get on with your work, boy!

reem - jesus, you're right: league of champions. And me an English teacher! You're not in Rennes les Bains, are you?

offside - thanks very much. My next piece will be 100% digression: dinner on me if you can guess the subject.

Mimi - I hadn't realised you were so shallow! Hope you don't have any trainspotter friends, as you'll have not time to post anymore...

mocney - love the joke: a new take on an old favourite (I'll tell you sometime).

kokomo - I'm not sure I have anything to say to you: you went to the BALLET? I said I was somewhat ignorant, not a girl!

mimi said...

tonyellis: shallow, shallow, I am as deep as the ocean, and my anorak is kept hidden away in the closet - and I leave you to add the punchline there!

offside said...

tony, reemgear,

Rennes-les-Bains? Or Rennes-le-château? Hands off that treasure, it's mine! Or at least keep quiet about it. And "near Carcassonne" is not good enough, reemgear. Be a bit more precise, as some of us know the area, secret caves and all. In fact, I might be around this summer and not with a metal detector but rather a foie gras detector. You'll recognise me easily, I look very French.

tony, yes, all digression and no beef is fine. I am a dilettante myself and I'd like to join you and guitou in the ignorance competition as I know shit.

offside said...

mimi,

greengrass and mouth are one and the same? That's a disturbing thought.

Although, I have to admit I have never seen them in the same room together.

tony said...

offside - rennes-les-bains: shall I keep it a secret from the thousands of rosbifs who live there? As for that other place you clumsily mentioned, I spent a fab few days near there in August in a chateau...

Foie-gras... how could you be so cruel? I tried that properly just after I found out about my high blood-pressure and cholesterol problems. What do you suggest?

PS when you say you look French, do you mean a striped t-shirt, string of onions round your neck and that 'three days since my last shower' look? ;0

guitougoal said...

Tony, offside wear the french -beret- when he is sober on the right side of his head, the other time he used it to catch butterflies.

offside said...

tony,

yeah, all that plus the greasy hair, butt-end stuck to my lower lip and a baguette under my sweaty armpit. And if that's not enough, the loincloth should give me away.

Foie gras, cruel? Are you joking? I'd love to be held between the thighs of a sexy south-western fermière while she forcefeeds and strokes me until my liver explodes.

What do I suggest? I suggest you have a bottle of Sauternes with it, it will do wonders for your blood pressure AND your conscience.

OK, let's talk no more about that place. Let's arrange to meet there instead, undercover of night, with shovels and a couple of flasks.

tony said...

gouti - on the RIGHT side? I didn't realise he was gay...

offside - conscience, me? How dare you! I meant cruel to me, not some thick bird that knows no better. Funny you should mention sauternes - I bought a rather nice one one my last trip.

Anyway, time to dormir...

offside said...

tony,

there must have been some misunderstanding, I'm quite sure I didn't say anything about your wife.

hannibalbrooks said...

Mocne

It was me who posted the link that drew you here, great to see yopu around again btw, but while I'm certainly no prude, I must say that I'm a bit shocked by your potty mouth. tut tut.

greengrass said...

offside -

Though the GU has provoked slight schizophrenia,
I still find you are being far, far meanier
To suggest my odes are not by my own hand,
But by that gob from Liverpuddleland.

MotM

mouthoftheoffsidegrass said...

How dare you speak to myself like that?

Jelley said...

Chaps, I think maybe you have too much time on your hands! Though I respect and admire the waffle produced since yesterday afternoon. Truly waffle of the highest order, and I feel honoured just to have read it!

Ahh how pleasant not to have to worry about topics and so on. That's it, I'm converted

tony said...

offside - how dare you refer to my good lady wife in that way! Meet me on GU so I can be properly offended!

PW75 said...

I think Koko is having us on. There is clearly no such thing as ballet in Sheffield.

offside said...

tony,

I did not refer to the lovely Mrs Ellis in any way at all. But if you want to step outside and settle it properly, I'm your man. I challenge you, in front of witnesses, to a private e-mail duel.

Monsieur l'anglais, tirez le premier:

olivierrothster@gmail.com

MocneJim said...

Hannibal

Excuse the mouth. It was posted after the watershead.

Thanks for the direction over here. I had been via Ingle's link a few weeks after all that hell kicked off as as you know I had banned myself for a while. This sight seemed like the introspective, dark, devil child of Ebren. But all things have a beginning and it seems to have lightened up and is spouting wings. It's beginning to take shape as a truly decent forum for debate.

I congratulate all who have contributed to it. Well most.

Gotta work all day to day so take it easy.

Peace and love

PottyMouthJim xx

Ebren said...

Mocney - "introspective, dark, devil child of Ebren".

No, no, that would be this: http://babyboomersruinedmylife.blogspot.com/

reemgear said...

Bum!

There, I said it...

fred said...

Mocne -
funny you should see this "the introspective, dark, devil child of Ebren" on your first visit.
I recommended this site to a friend of mine, a defrocked vicar. He e-mailed me the other day, complaining that the only thing on here was some piss-artist peddling all his filthiest limericks, and that he would not return, since all he had to say had obviously already been said.

Greengrass

P.S. Off to the chapel for the weekend to avoid having to suffer another England game. Have fun, folks!

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