Saturday, May 12, 2007

Good Evening Fellow Scoundrels - Mouth of the Mersey

332 years ago, Samuel Johnson warned us that "patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" and the intervening period has borne out his point rather well. So how has sport become the last refuge of the patriot? (Betting without the Eurovision Song Contest, on television as I write!)

If we discount Athens vs Sparta some time ago, England vs Scotland football internationals were possibly the first platforms for flag-waving, but that's more the kind of patriotism we see at the Song Contest, so I'll date the start of scoundrel-patriotism with Leni Riefenstahl's extraordinary "Olympia" created to celebrate the Nazi hijacking of Berlin's 1936 Olympiad, but more accurately described as a love poem to the human body in motion as http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwmYFz01MxA demonstrates. The character of Great Art is its very otherness and I find myself so transported by the beauty of the subject and the technical command and innovation of the film-makers, that it takes the jarring cutaways to the Nazi elite to remind me of Fraulein Riefenstahl's purpose.

Fast-forward seventy-odd years and millions of deaths in the service of misguided patriotism to the most cliched image in sport:










How I long for an Olympic winner to do a much more modest version of Tommie Smith's raised, gloved fist salute by throwing the flag back into the crowd and grabbing the five rings of the Olympic movement, however tainted that symbol may be. No chance of that! More chance of the winner grabbing a flag displaying the Nike swoosh. Here's a reminder of a more potent use of the platform sport provides:















Finally, the next 10 days in England will be filled with football phone-ins and journalism demanding that us English get behind Liverpool's attempt to win a sixth Big Cup in Athens. Leaving aside the dubious "Englishness" of Liverpool as a club (or, perhaps, even as a city), shouldn't every fan of any other English club be willing Maldini and friends to the victory? Frankly, the money earned by Milan from a Big Cup win would be unlikely to be spent on James Vaughan of Everton, but Liverpool's winnings might. And that's enough for me to wish Hannibal and friends well, but hope that they come home disappointed to a Premiership just a little more competitive next year for their defeat.

56 comments:

MotM said...

Just couldn't get the photos in the right places. Hope my technical incompetence doesn't detract from my argument (which needs all the help it can get!)

andrewm said...

Mouth, first let me say we need more articles from you, whether I agree with them or not, so keep writing.

Now - playing a little bit of devil's advocate here, since I'm no patriot - couldn't it be said that the whole purpose of the modern Olympics is in fact to represent one's country, and not in fact individual achievement?

What I mean is that these athletes, particularly the Americans as I understand their system, get huge backing from their governments, and on that basis isn't a little flagwaving understandable? They wouldn't be there otherwise.

PS. That's a terribly presented argument, but typing exhausts me so it's all you're getting.

Zeph said...

And with pictures! Always a pleasure to read your thoughts, MotM.

As the world becomes more globalised, commercialised, mechanised and electronic, are we clinging ever more tightly to ancient loyalties? Or if necessary adopting a loyalty to cling to, like buying old furniture?

MotM said...

Thanks for your request for more - I really enjoy writing, but time is not on my time at the moment. I had meant to get this subject on pseuds for some time, even before the ColdCoffee / Gitou contretemps on Marcela's blog last week. I'd given up on a polished piece and thought a provocative piece might work and that's what's there.

There is an argument which supports your view, but there are at least two counters to it.

Firstly, in the Ancient Olympics, truces were called and a "stateless" space declared I believe. I rather like that idea and would like to see athletes compete under the five rings alone.

Secondly, how much have nation states actually supported the winners? At elite level, training facilities, coaches, home bases, tax status etc are seldom linked to the happenstance of that athlete's birthplace. Okay, Australians might differ, but how much does Andy Murray owe Scotland for example?

Anyway, the whole point is to generate an explicit discussion about stuff which has burbled away beneath the surface of many posts - what is the place of patriotism in sport? And is it healthy for sport to be so closely linked to nation states - unlike, say, business or art.

MotM said...

Cheers Zeph - That's the way we're going I think. I find the idea of supporting Chelsea vs PSV Eindhoven like cheering for Samsung products on a Generation Game conveyor belt and booing the Phillips versions. I'm just left cold by any team other than mine, and I didn't feel that way in the days of Emlyn at Liverpool, McGovern at Forest and (Scouser!)Dennis Mortimer at Villa.

guitougoal said...

All right mister baron de Motm, let's the game begin:
thanks for your masterful job, all we need now it's a flag and a pen and start writing on your the subject
You made your point: what the hell the flag hs to do with sports, that was not the original idea.
when the baron created the Olympic Games a century ago, it was to put into effect celebrations of youth and fitness, to produce a race of happy people who would never again have to go to war-Which would draw the whole world into a pageant of health and happiness and combat in sports, not in warship.
Well, it's gotten out of hand. It's become a celebration of power and money.They're using the olympic games to sell shoes, soft drinks, even postal services.The Olympic flag should be a pair of nike shoes, instead of "Citius,altius,fortius" the olympic motto should be" sell, pay, bank"-
opening and closing ceremonies always a high light, only thing that has not been commercialized, the whole world in a parade.In between it's america against germany or england against france and the flags are up ...we are a bunch of homers.Nothing is perfect, Mouth, but look at an Olympics this way:suppose you give a party and everybody come?That's what is going to happen in London.Long live the games.
great idea the illustration..

pipita said...

As you may well have imagined Mouthy, Im with you all the way here....Sincere apologies due to Hannibal, Andy m, Kokomo and dear ol Masch, for hoping you may all somehow enjoy the ocasion on wednesday without bringing that cup back to the mersey

pipita said...

Guitou
Bon nuit mon ami. Thanks for dedicating me that lovely Santana song...
Mouthy
Was it Samuel Johnson who also said something on the lines that the best thing about Scotland was the road that took you back to England??Pretty sure it was him. Im sure andym wont be too impressed with this. Sure he meant no offense to andy...

MotM said...

Gitou - Are we getting to the point where all the good things about the Olympics can be done with "Make Poverty History" type days? The sense of friendship, even (dare I venture the word) cameraderie, the world en fete?

Sure I think the Games will be great for London, but I find that the sport is the least attractive element and isn't that a shame for a sports nut?

The IOC ban adverts from the stadium - why not ban flags? It would be a start.

guitougoal said...

MoTm,
absolutely.this is a genuine moral issue.It will be a good thing which can benefit not only the beneficiaries(the poors and starving) but it can benefit our perspective.If there is a place for the enlargement of the human sympathies, the Olympics is the perfect one.

mimi said...

Ha, I see some South Americans in here tonight. What news from La Paz and Chris Hoy's monumental attempt on the kilo? I'll write it up for you all later, but up to date news, please?

levremance said...

If its your country, I suppose you're expected to support them but I can scarcley be bothered jumping on bandwagons of sports that I barely follow.

I watched the 2003 Rugby WC final and can't say I really cared that Oz lost to England. Ditto for the socceroos. Not my subculture.

I guess coming from an Aussie Rules background I'm just not that used to expressing patriotism at sporting venues. I've been to a couple of Australia vs Ireland International Rules games but they didn't fire patriotic zeal in me either.

I've never worn green and gold at the cricket though I did take the Eureka flag into Lords but they don't like you to wave flags there.

I realise I'm in the minority but I say most international sport is over-rated.

I'd rather watch Collingwood beat Carlton anyday, like they did yesterday as a matter of fact.

andrewm said...

I'm not very good at the devil's advocate part, am I?

MotM said...

Lev - I'm tempted to agree, except for the cricket.

Andrew - Be a Devil! Link up with Nesta and be a Tasmanian Devil! I'll get me coat...

byebyebadman said...

motm - nice piece. I'm not sure what the Olympics means anymore, other than several juicy contracts for some building firm like Laing and the cash injection from a fortnight's upsurge in tourism. It's showcasing London, not sport.

As for James Vaughan, I'm sure he wouldn't risk a cross-town transfer so you can probably sleep easy!

duncan said...

Food for thought there MoTM. Who was the white bloke on the podium with Tommy and his mate?

On a separate not, I'm a bit sad United didn't send West ham down today.

MotM said...

Badman - I think you're right about the Olympics becoming a gigantic advert for the host city. I'm glad it's here in London, but
for the majority of events, I wouldn't open the curtains if they were playing in the garden.

James Vaughan to Liverpool? It has a horrible ring to it. Thanks God he's not Spanish. Oh no, Mikkel is!!

Duncan, the internets reveal that splitting Tommie Smith and John Carlos in the 200 metres and collecting a silver medal, is Australia's Peter Norman.

I'm not sure that using the Olympics as a political platform is right, but that action was brave and, in the times, on the side of right over wrong. What is clear to me is that flag-waving and pushing advertising logoes is political too, so if the flag stuff is allowed, why not the protest stuff?

nesta said...

The white bloke (I would have used the phrase 'other bloke') was Peter Norman who passed away late last year. He was the silver medallist and an Australian. He understood and supported his brothers on the podium and they both flew from the US to attend Peter's funeral. If you want to know more google 'Peter Norman' he was a champion human being.

As for the Olympics they ruined Sydney. Everyone made plenty of cash but the legacy is increased inflation across the board. The residents of NSW will be paying for it for decades.

The best part of the Olympics is the Paralympics that follows the main event. If you get the chance go to some of those events including two of my favourite sports, Wheelchair rugby and wheelchair basketball.

It is in the amateur less abled bodied athletes where the true Olympic spirit now lies.

And don't forget google Peter Norman you won't regret it it is a great story.

And Cathy Freeman displayed the Aboriginal flag during the 1998 Commonwealth Games and the 2000 Olympics as a political protest/celebration when she won gold medals.

And I've just seen that MOTM has finally recognised Peter who was part of the protest. Well done.

nesta said...

To save every interested person the trouble here are some words and history on the forgotten man.


Almost four decades later, the image can still make hairs rise on unsuspecting necks. It’s 1968, and 200-metre gold medalist Tommie Smith stands next to bronze winner John Carlos, their raised black-gloved fists smashing the sky on the medal stand in Mexico City. They were Trojan Horses of Rage — bringing the Black revolution into that citadel of propriety and hypocrisy: the Olympic games. When people see that image, their eyes are drawn like magnets toward Smith and Carlos, standing in black socks, their heads bowed in controlled concentration.

Less noticed is the silver medalist. He is hardly mentioned in official retrospectives, and people assume him to be a Forrest Gump-type figure, just another of those unwitting witnesses to history who always end up in the back of famous frames. Only the perceptive notice that this seemingly anonymous individual is wearing a rather large button emblazoned with the letters O-P-H-R, standing for the Olympic Project for Human Rights.

Only those who see the film footage notice that he never throws a furtive glance back at fellow medal winners as they raise their fists. He never registers surprise or alarm. At a moment that epitomised the electric shock of rebellion, his gaze is cool, implacable, his back ramrod straight, a fellow soldier proud to stand with his brothers.

Only those who go beyond official history will learn about the true motivations of all three of these men.

They wanted the apartheid countries of South Africa and Rhodesia to be disallowed from the Olympics. They wanted more coaches of African descent. They wanted the world to know that their success did not mean racism was now a relic of history. The silver medalist with the white skin stood with Smith and Carlos on every question and it was agreed before the race, that if the three, as expected, were the ones on the dais,
they would stand together: three young anti-racists standing together in struggle.

That silver medalist with the nerves of steel and thirst for justice was Australian runner Peter Norman. Norman died of a heart attack on October 3 at the age of 64.

Two people who knew the depth and conviction of Norman’s solidarity were the two who acted as lead pallbearers at his funeral: Tommie Smith and John Carlos. Over the years the three men had stayed connected, welded together by history and the firestorm they all faced when the cameras were turned
off.

The backlash endured by Smith and Carlos is well documented. Less known are Norman’s own travails. He was a pariah in the Australian Olympic world, despite being a five-time national champion in the 200 metres. He desired to coach the highest levels, yet worked as a physical education teacher, the victim of a Down Under blacklist. As Carlos said, ”At least me and Tommie had each other when we came home. When Peter went home, he had to deal with a nation by himself. He never wavered, never denied that he was up there with us for a purpose and he never said ‘I’m sorry’ for his involvement. That’s indicative of who the man was.”

When the 2000 Olympics came to Sydney, Norman was outrageously outcast from the festivities — still the invisible man. In a conversation at that time with sportswriter Mike Wise, Norman was absent of bitterness, and wore his ostracism as proudly as that solidarity button from 1968. “I did the only thing I believed was right”, he said to Wise. “I asked what
they wanted me to do to help. I couldn’t see why a black man wasn’t allowed to drink out of the same water fountain or sit in the same bus or go to the same schools as a white guy. That was just social injustice that I couldn’t do anything about from where I was, but I certainly abhorred it.”

Norman never strayed from a life of humility. When a sculpture was unveiled of Smith and Carlos last year in California, Norman was left off, the silver medal platform purposely vacant so others could stand in his place. Smith and Carlos protested it, feeling it fed the false idea of Norman as political bystander. But Norman himself who travelled from Australia to California for the unveiling said, “I love that idea. Anybody can get up there and stand up for something they believe in. I guess that just about says it all.”

Norman didn’t define himself by self-promotion, book deals, or the lecture circuit — only by the quiet pride that he was a part of a movement much bigger than himself. By happily surrendering his personal glory to the greater good, Norman earned the love and respect of his peers.

As Carlos said about the sudden passing of the man his children called Uncle Pete, “Peter was a piece of my life. When I got the call, it knocked the wind out of me. I was his brother. He was my brother. That’s all you have to know.”

Written by David Zirin author of What’s My Name Fool?: Sports and Resistance in the United States (Haymarket Books).

francaise said...

thanks for the aid motm for getting this techojobby back into cyberspace - i think! all i would add to what i've observed on the graud is to say that whenever france are playing wales - usually at the oval ball - i feel torn between the land of my fathers and that of my son, so i'm "happy" whoever wins; this vicious or violent patriotism which appears to be on a march these days - sarkozy has said about france to "love it or leave it" is worrying enough in politics, but if it enters the sporting arena in combination with or as a replacement for racism then it will become a social tsunami which no politico will hold back...

francaise said...

the third man with smith and carlos in 68 was Peter Norman of Australia i believe...

MotM said...

Tears in my eyes Nesta - many, many thanks.

MotM said...

Francaise - Great that you're on board.

You will now have read Nesta's post which shows the solidarity sport can bring.

Nesta - At risk of sounding crass, there would be a fantastic biopic tracing the relationship of these three men don't you think?

MotM said...

I see that there is a film - "Salute".

nesta said...

I see no crassness in a biopic of three men who through their actions displayed personal integrity instead nationalistic ignorance. I think it would make a great film.

Another little bit of trivia concerning that photo. The Ameriacans only had one pair of gloves and that is why one guy has his left hand raised and the other his right.

I'm off to bed now but tomorrow I will dig out a document explaining the symbolism of the no shoes, the fists raised, the heads bowed and other subtle gestures from that famous ceremony. A great deal of thought was put into that protest.

In light of your article and the dias protest is it not an indictment of world corporate sport that Australia has just cancelled their tour to Zimbabwe under the threat of a 2 million dollar fine. Our machivellian PM outfoxed the ICC and Mugabe and hopefully the rest of the cricketing world will follow suit. More about that tomorrow. Goodnight.

francaise said...

indeed a human story about stand-up humans; i do remember the race and the event but embarrassingly forgot the "white guy"...good to read that and can now appreciate what very good, relevant, well-written articles are on here -

andrewm said...

Nesta - brilliant. Many thanks.

guitougoal said...

Nesta,
dramatic and extraordinary story,
"he didn't raise his fist but he did lend us a hand"
-Tommie Smith about Peter Norman-
Here in the u.s,
It was well noticed that Norman was sympathetic to the Carlos, Smith cause-Hence extensive coverage of his death by the sports media, your story about the left and right gloves also is often mentioned.
Amazingly his time is still the Australian 200m. record.
as far as john Carlos, he moved to Palm springs,
california, in the late 80's to become the high-school track and field coach. At this time I was living in Palm springs and coincidently my neighbor next door was the high school chief of security (also a black african american ex football pro).Carlos used to show-up at the 4th of july barbecue. But when my friends Marylin and Bill lost their 21 years old son from an incurable illness,Carlos lend his hand and stood by his colleague side , trying to lift some of the pain and suffering with a great dedication.
Imagine if Smith, Norman, and Carlos had three gloves to wear on this day.

Zeph said...

The film looks very interesting - made by Peter Norman's nephew. Info here:

www.salutethemovie.com

Nice quote: "it's about a race - the human race, not the Olympic race."

Thank you Nesta.

duncan said...

nesta - Sometimes a picture can tell a thousand words, but only if we know what we are looking at. Your post added a huge amount for me. Absolutely briliant. I'm a pale-skinned man so solidarity with others of a different hue is the best I can muster, and try to pass on to my kids. They will be reading your post.Thanks.

zeph said...

Can't resist adding this Bob Dylan quote:

"They say that patriotism is the last refuge
To which a scoundrel clings
Steal a little and they throw you in jail
Steal a lot and they make you king."

nesta said...

It's not my favourite thing to do Mouth but in your article you stated,

'Tommie Smith's Black Panther raised, gloved fist'

Tommie copped alot of flak because people assumed he was a Black Panther. He was not. He even feared that he would be assassinated because of this misconception.

In his own words written in his autobiography, Silent Gesture.

"It was not a big difference from what a lot of people were doing at that particular time, in different groups. I did not belong to the Black Panthers or any other group, except The Olympic Project for Human Rights, which started on the campus of San Jose State University,"

And

"We didn't have time to talk, because we were on the victory stand, but the hand (fist gesture) didn't represent so much black power as it did just power, social power, social equity. … And on the stand it was a prayer, a cry for freedom. It was very simple, but people made it so big because it was two black athletes on the victory stand and in an Olympic game, a sporting event. This was the big problem with America."

If you can amend your post so that this misconception doesn't continue to spread I and I would be grateful.

MotM said...

Nesta - I am grateful to you for pointing out my error and have amended the post at the first opportunity.

I knew that the athletes were not Black Panthers, but I had (from memory) read of the gesture being a "Black Panther salute" and wrote, perhaps too hastily, in those words.

My get-out clauses is that I wanted to get this subject up at some point having failed to do so for three weeks and that, had I not done so, we wouldn't have had your wonderful interventions.

Thanks again.

nesta said...

Governor Mersey

You need no get out clause we all make mistakes. In fact I make them every day. It is a good example of how disinformation can spread like a virus infecting people's minds and memories with illusion.

I have written a piece that may appear, if it makes it pass the lusty legal eagles at psueds, in tomorrow's edition at The Corner which should have you positively intervening. It was inspired by this very article. And I think it is on a topic close to your heart.

duncan said...

TS may not have been one, but part of what The Black Panthers did includes some some pretty good and very acceptable stuff from what I've heard. Like the idea that getting kids breakfast before school might help them learn, and, I think, the Head Start program, with its idea that education should begin before the first day of school.

marcela said...

terrific, terrific, terrific indeed to have a thoughtprovoking sports-piece about something bigger than the sport itself...

terrific, brilliant, and wonderful that it's got pictures!!! how did you do that, motm? i want to do that too!

terrific, breathtakingly terrific, nesta's contribution. a superb read, moving, informative, hairs on the back of my neck standing... the lot.

pseuds'corner fast becoming compulsory reading above and below the line!

MotM said...

Aw Shucks Marcela, that's awfully kind from a pro-journo of your standing!

As I suspected and Nesta proved, there's a lot in this area and I feel privileged to have read Nesta's posting on Peter Norman and am looking forward to the contribution to come.

The pictures are a bit tricky but you hit one of the little icons above the writing area to insert them. I'm lucky because Lord Ebren gave me posting rights so I can do it - if not position them! I didn't manage to insert the youtube clip though!

I suspect there isn't an issue for which we cannot find a sports analogy or metaphor or, best of all, a sports story that transcends the issue and takes us to a higher or, alas, lower plane of humanity.

Duncan - I'm no expert, but didn't the Black Panthers do some pretty bad things along with the good, or am I mixing them up with the Weathermen? I have, of course, no argument with their cause and, as with Ali at that time, they did right when it would have been oh so easy to do nothing. Not a bad definition of moral courage I'd say.

guitougoal said...

MoTm,
I hope you don't mind me coming back on the subject but with all the negatives we all agreed on, we can't deny the games something that hasn't been commercialized or politicized.They are a moment in history, they survived bans, terrorists and political controversy.What makes it it's the march of the athletes, almost 15000 representing 200 countries, they wear different clothes with different colors, they speak different languages but underneath they are the same.People are people.They don't really march. they straggle, they chew gum, they waved the crowd, they get out of step. out of line.They put their arms around each other, they take picture.They have a ball.You look at them and you figure things are going to be all right after all.

MotM said...

Gitou - I agree.

My Dad was arguing with a non-sports fan (sports non-fan?) who insisted that all any sports people cared about was winning at all costs. My Dad told him to watch the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics and consider how many of those people had a chance of winning - 5% at most. But they were all grateful to be there and were fully aware of the privilege.

I don't much care for the ceremonies, but it's mankind at its flawed best I agree.

MotM said...

I expected to read more comment about my praise of Fraulein Riefenstahl's work. Can you be a genius in service of evil?

guitougoal said...

here we go again....banning myself from the pseud's i'll be homeless.Just a camus t-shirt on my back and the pakalolo a gogo....bumming around beverly hills.
Thanks motm.

MotM said...

Gitou - Oh No!

You can't get away from here as easily as that!

Who would want to be in Beverley Hills when you can be here!

guitougoal said...

-motm-true.
besides,nazism could be on topic since the infamous pre-war olympics and the great Jesse Owens performances in front of a frustrated furher.
Jesse Owens was probaly another source of inspiration to John Carlos....
-what about:the art of being human? for a topic combining sport and humanity?

file said...

hi mouth,

what marcela said, great stuff

to my mind everything is political and everything is art too, Leni Riefenstahl's amazing work can't be seperated from it's function however brilliant it is

and a telling point too; that these days it would more likely be the nike swoosh than the raised fist, if todays yoof get really revelotionary they might just manage to spirit in an adidas tri-stripe, woo

thanks nesta too, it's great to be reminded that there are bigger things than ourselves and that for some folk, that is enough

refreshing all round, ta

file said...

mouth,

oh yeah, also wanted to ask for more, can you extend this article? politics in football etc?

duncan said...

Mouth - Riefenstahl's work is brilliant in pure art terms but clearly a fuck-up in political one's. I happen to think that if we did not know the context of her art we'd praise it unequivocably, but we do, so we can't.

Re: The Weathermen, have you seen the documentary?

I think the Black Panthers were mainly defenders, not aggressors. I like that they got licences to carry unconcealed guns and did so openly and legally.

Thw White Panthers are also interesting, not some kind of jerk-off reactionary group for 'white rights' but a group who offered solidarity with their black brothers (much to that group's confusion though). The MC5 were part of that, especially wayne kramer and their manager John Sinclair, who's worth googling (not many people have a song titled after them by john lennon, or had stevie wonder & lennon play a concert to get them out of prison).

i count john as a mate. the memory of having an egg-nog with him at his daughter's house in post-flooded new orleans will stay with me. i had to refuse his industrial strength dope though. john judges the cannabis cup in amsterdam some years and i can't hang with that!

munni said...

Very, very interesting. Thanks.

Ms. Riefenstahl, to my understanding, never really committed heart and mind to nazi ideology, but was quite happy to jump on that bandwagon in the service of her art. I can't decide if that makes her more or less odious - more, I think.

A couple of sidenotes:

Where does all this leave those athletes who have represented a country other than their own (or at least other than their birth-country), whether for political, economic or other reasons?

And, Guitou: "opening and closing ceremonies always a high light, only thing that has not been commercialized" - ????? But they're like Disneyland. I could give dozens of examples, but I'm thinking specifically of those dancers dressed up as cows in Turin...

guitougoal said...

munni,
holly cow! I understand what you mean, most of the times it's overdone, overstaged,over produced because most of the time the host country wants to show off its creative capacity,I still think the march of the athletes makes it worth watching.
about Leni Riefensthal, yes she always denied that she knew anything about what was going on with the nazism-but there was picture of her wearing the ss uniform though.

MotM said...

Three very high achieving "non-Nazi" Germans:

Werner Heisenberg (Physics);
Leni Riefenstahl (Film and Photography);
Werner von Braun (Rocketry).

The question that must be asked is, what would you have done? I know what I would like to have
done, but would I have had the moral courage? Where is my moral courage today?

Here's what the great Italian cyclist, Gino Bartali did when asked the question - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gino_Bartali#Bartali_outside_of_cycling.

offside said...

Mouth,

great article, followed by a brilliant thread. Not commenting, but sitting there reading and learning a lot. Thanks everyone.

file said...

duncan,

very interesting too!

'Was he jailed for what he done
Or representing everyone?'

industrial strength dope? I wonder what the industrial uses of dope might be...

duncan said...

Mouth - Thanks for the link to Gino Bartali. Well worth a read, a screeplay, a movie, an oscar,
...what are you waiting for?!!

HannibalBrooks said...

... and lets hope that Everton do their best not to attract a possible sponsorship deal from EasyJet this time, by not being 'in and out of Europe in 90 minutes' .. :oP

If Everton reached a CL final then I would be supporting them all the way, just as I did when they reached the ECWC final in Rotterdam in 1985 ... but that's just me :o)

MotM said...

HB - Your ecumenicalism is a rare and beautiful thing.

And I just can't do it.

Keep the gags coming though - I'm looking forward to us being drawn against FC Jkbgwerkb of Lithuania whilst your boys are still talking about Milan.

Matt Norman said...

Hi all,

It's great seeing all of you discuss my uncle Peter Norman with such passion. Thank you sincerely. If you would like to know more about the upcoming FILM called SALUTE then go check out www.salutethemovie.com or get onto FACEBOOK and search Matt Norman and then join the Civil/Human rights cause I have set up. This film is very important for a new generation to see what really happened in 68 as well as look at the World we live in 40 years on.

Thanks again all.

MotM said...

Mr Norman - Thank you for those kind words. I was the person who wrote the original piece, but the credit for the discussion goes to Nesta Quin and our fellow pseuds.

It is a wonderful story and the movie and associated causes deserve to succeed.

Very Best Wishes.

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