>Bang on


I almost threw my dinner at the TV last night during the England v Hungary game. The BBC analysis was absolute garbage. The three of them, Hansen, Wright and Lee ‘can’t get my words out’ Dixon are bloody terrible. Even Lineker was annoying.

Wright spent the entire time, slagging off Sven, probably cos Sven didn’t pick his adopted son in the squad. Of course that was the right decision. He has barely played all season at Chelsea. And I imagine it was Ian’s advice that persuaded his son to go to Chelsea and never play a game but take the money.Gerrard dives, Wright says that’s ok. Just wait till the opposition does that to us in the world cup.

Lee Dixon didn’t seem to know who was playing. Lineker was sarcastic throughout.

Owen Hargreaves, the defensive midfielder for Bayern Munich, the German champions, the guy who allows Ballack to look good, gets critical comments before he’s even got on the field and the ‘experts’ didn’t even have the football analysis to see that he would be a direct replacement but they would be a reshuffle. Only once the game had restarted, did they realise that he would swap positions with Carragher. Wasn’t that bloody obvious. I was going nuts.

And hook up with the link above, I am not alone.

Credit to Steve for link.

Matt’s work

Matt Young, a man of changing hairstyles, laconic wit and funky shoes. An architect by training, an artist by nature, Matt will marry the equally talented Minka at the start of next year in…. Tasmania. Possibly a cunning ploy to keep boils away, but he knows a holiday when he spies one. I’ll be back in a minute boss, honest.

To the left are Matt’s designs, the above design is reflective of Kyoto, the ancient city of Japan, a city M&M lived in for 4 years. I was there a mere 7 months but we shared some beers on many occasions and will do in the future. It’s a fairly sleepy major city that survived fairly intact from the war only to be overrun by poor urban planning. But we had fun there.

The lower design is symbolic of the overall time and experience of Japan, incorporating the seasons of each year (the tops 3 segments) and the bottom segments reflect the 3 major cities of Kansai, Osaka, Kobe, Kyoto, Kyoto (to cover the 2 years they lived there) which hosted Matt and Minka for those years.

Can you see it? Click on them and have a look.

Here comes Zulu

England has curious national holidays. They are for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Today is the 29th of May, otherwise known as May Day. Genius eh? And it’s a national holiday because….errr… it’s May. That’s it. Nothing happens either. No parades, no parties. 23rd of April is St George’s Day, the patron Saint of England, the guy who rode out to slay the dragon, a metaphor for England’s quest and dominance of the globe and in it’s shaping. But we don’t celebrate it. The Queens birthday is an opportunity for tens of countries to get drunk; we’re working.

Without the English, more correct to say the British as the Scots proved themselves excellent engineers and battlers, once they put the whiskey away, the world would be far the poorer. From our great explorers of Drake and Cook to leaders like Churchill, inventors like Stephenson, Faraday and Tim Berners-Lee (the inventor of the web), writers like Shakespeare, Austin, JK Rowling and Dickens, musicians like the Beatles, the Clash, Radiohead, The Rolling Stones and Massive Attack, artists like Bacon and Turner (an art form we have never really taken to heart unlike continental Europe), scientists like Darwin and Newton. The world plays our sports, knows our history and uses our language.

It’s not nationalism and I don’t want to hear that we are better than others. It’s just due to the English character, unless we’ve got a lot of beer in us or and rabid from war, we’d rather slide back into our houses and put the kettle on than make a fuss. That’s admirable in itself but as the nation state is under threat from devolution within and integration with Europe and the wider world, often welcomed but it’s time for the English to stand up and say I am English. A Scot would always tell you he is Scottish, the Welsh display their nationhood everywhere and the Irish have made a business of exporting Irishness. Good luck to them. We’re not a country of foodies. Why? Cos while some were spending hours cooking, we were out doing stuff.

We have nothing to ashamed of. Let the World Cup follow on from the Ashes, continue through to the Ashes and the rugby World Cup and let’s get St George’s Day and the Queen’s birthday into real days of celebration. A trip to the British Museum is a telling tale. Full of artefacts from a round the world, often taken without permission for sure but seeing the way many nations have failed to preserve their history, in many ways this has saved their cultural relics too. At some point they could be handed back but I imagine most who visit who disagree.

But for now I’m gonna settle down watch James Bond, Thunderball I imagine and Zulu. Followed by a bit of Peter Kay.

He ain’t no fool

He was Hulk Hogan‘s tag-team partner at the first WrestleMania. Hulk Hogan wrote in his autobiography that Mr. T saved the main event of WrestleMania I between them and “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff because when he arrived, security let his entourage into the building. Hogan was ready to skip the show until Mr. T personally talked him out of leaving.

Thank the Lord for Mr T, still teaching those kids and kicking ass despite what Nev says!!

>Driving with Ali

>It’s 1964 and Ali, then known as Cassius Clay is challenging for the Heavyweight Championship of the World against the much-feared Sonny Liston. Ali has his huge entourage which he needs at the fight so due to discrimination at the time which makes flying difficult as well as very expensive, they decide to drive a big bus across the country to the fight. It’s a two days trip at least. Ali’s entourage arrive drunk on the first day, so Ali, a tee-totaller, decides to drive the bus.

Speeding down the highway, a policeman on a motorbike pulls the bus over for driving far too fast. He dismounts his bike, walks to the driver’s side and is shocked to see Muhammad Ali at the wheel. The policeman recognises him immediately and tells him he is a big fan. Ali replies thanks. The policemen says that due to the excessive speed, he would normally arrested the driver but he understands the situation and is a big fan after all. He issues a fine of $100 instead. Ali asks if a cheque is good. The policeman says fine. Muhammad goes to the glove box, finds a cheque book, writes out the cheque and hands it to the officer. The policeman is surprised and says Muhammad, you have written a cheque for too much. The fine is $100 but you wrote $200. Muhammad replies, I know but I gotta come back.

Credit to John