My great old mate Alex sent this advertising picture to me a few years back and I’ve just found it again. a 1971 advert for Smirnoff. A classic picture and the tag line is just awesome. We who have drunk copious amounts know that at certain points in our lives we could have taken the wrong path and headed into some other kind of oblivion.

NUFC – Time for a Change

Well it’s just over 25% of the way through the season and NUFC are in 16th place. We can moan on all we like about injuries but apart from Owen and Shola’s hip, there aren’t many now. The fact is we have 9pts from 30 available, 9 pts in 10 games. We’ve only conceded 13 goals but scored a mere 7. So defence is our strong point? How many times have we seen our defence look stupid and clueless/ With an attack and defence like that, we are truly f##king useless.

Is Glenn the man for the job? Well everyone knows that a no. We all like him and he did himself proud last season but Glenn is the kind of manager who inevitably gets fired. So what do we do? We won’t get relegated here, not even close. But what do we do? We’ve a decent squad but have wasted over £20m on signings like Luque and even Martins. Players we don’t really need. The defence looks strong at times but you always fear for them. The midfield is strong, solid and organised with enough flair to create chances that Duff, with his redundant right peg, can’t put away.

We need Shola to play. Need to play Butt and Solano who add a little dependable class, rarely giving the ball away. Parker is class. Milner is hard working and skilled, N’Zogbia can beta defenders but his final ball is lacking. The team works hard but always looks that way. Nothing is effortless, smooth passing movements are rarely the hallmark of NUFC. More often you’re going to see a bundled shot, a lucky break from a ricochet. Well that’s down to training and work off the field.

I have no doubt the players respect Glenn, are working hard for the fans and the club. They want to win but the breaks aren’t coming. But we barely deserve them. Luck is granted to you when you are unlucky. We’re not unlucky. We’re not good enough. Time for a ‘world-class manager’ Freddie and I mean world class. A manager who hasn’t failed at any level. Give him the spending power. A manager not unlike Bobby Robson. Or Alan Curbishley, a manager used to dealing with the average.

This is weird – Man banned from touching muscles

A man has been ordered by a judge not to feel people’s muscles or ask them to do exercises in public.

Akinwale Arobieke, 45, from Liverpool, was also banned from measuring the size of muscles, under the order requested by Merseyside Police.

Arobieke, who is known in the area as Purple Aki, is out of jail on licence after a sentence imposed in 2003 for 15 counts of harassment.

More here

Robbo Robson’s Xmas Books list

Always funny and observant. More found here

Of course there are some books I’d love to read:

20,000 Leagues Under the Premiership – the story of Leeds United in the 21st Century

The Rise and Fall of Roman’s Empire – the story of Chelsea in the 21st Century

Malice in Sunderland – Roy Keane’s new book

Tumbledown – a season in the life of Arjen Robben

Tender Is The Bite – Tottenham Hotspur fans’ tribute to Jermain Defoe

The Invisible Man – Jermaine Jenas’ World Cup 2006 diary

The Days of the T’riffic – Trevor Brooking’s nostalgic look at the Hammers team of the 70s and 80s

And finally the book I’m desperately trying to get hold of…..

How To Be Successful In Football Without Really Trying – by Francesco Totti.


I left work at 6pm tonight. Overrun all day, sorting out various problems. Cajoling, experimenting and ultimately fixing problems. Good for the esteem, not that this lad lacked any. It energised me, made me wanna stay longer. While these days the make-up is merely daubed around the eyes on my work colleagues, the tiredness shining off their cheeks, rubbing into their eyes, I felt good. Wooohhhooo!

But 6pm? I had been there since 8am. 10 hours. But the time I get home and fed, there will be a mere 4 hours or so until bedtime. Its ludicrous. How am I meant to get any real worthwhile work done? Am I meant to wait until the weekend, grateful to my employer they have granted me such a reprieve?

Its not my work here though. I quite enjoy it in a functional way. But that’s the rub. Its functional. What I really enjoy doing I can’t. I’ve got no time or am too tired to get motivated over it. Lucky this is a mere temporary a bit of ‘real’ life. I live close to work. I wouldn’t work anywhere else. I get my cardio/belly workout every morning and evening on the bike to work. It’s a time liberating exercise allowing me to get to and from work quickly, feel the world run through me, and get some exercise. I’d always be this way. I don’t mind taking the subway or bus; it’s an opportunity to read or study. It’s about time management I suppose. Damn, that’s depressing. Making the most of the time I have, be that daily, weekly etc.

And that time management, which I am fairly conscious of, leads to me the wide-eyed, gaped-mouthed, limp-cocked understanding of modern working life in European sweat house UK. For most, work is unenjoyable, justified by a wage which allows you to keep up the mortgage and bills payments, allowing a night out a week, saving for the future, a holiday a year and the hold grail of owning your own house. woooohhhooooo!!! (I wonder if Bill Gates still looks at his monthly pay cheque, screams out loud, ‘Yeah, let’s hit the town.’) Except you’ll be a mere 20 years from death by the time you’ve achieved that. Woooohhhhoooo!!! I’m a near-dead man but I got a house. Woooohhhooo!!

I’ve got different sunsets to see.

(PS. I can’t get that Homer Simpson cheer out of my head)

>I saw the sky today, for the first time in maybe 6 days. It was blue and massive, reassuring and gently uplifting. It’s been raining here for days, downpours galore. When your day consists of going to work in the dark and leaving as the sky pales, it can be fairly depressing in this country. I like the sky, love the colour and adore raging sunsets.

I’ve become un-English over the last few years, like a lot of my generations, we are moving away from the stiff, conservatism that made this country unique and homely. The Graham Greene characters my old mate Paul Prosser loves so much are past now; the foreigners stranded abroad, living in his ‘Little England’ far from home, pessimistic of ever returning, unable to mentally even if he could physically. The Englishness is receding but maybe the inability to return home isn’t. I know Paul and I have talked about it after our traditional 20 pints.

The clocks go back this weekend hastening the winter, pushing us indoors, huddled under the weather and English culture, watching the same TV programmes in each house, almost hibernating until the spring. But this usurping of old Englishness has led to almost an open celebration of summer. The summers are truly great, sitting outside drinking a beer. You will never not find a smile. That’s where I’m gonna live, forever summer. I’ll invite you when i find it.

Hey there

Well its late and I am tired. Bedtime soon. Life is pretty good. Been musing of late, a little melancoly but nada serious. My social life is slow but the way I want it. Been having fun now and then, working a lot, reading and studying, watching NUFC surprisingly beat Fenerbahce. Can’t wait for London though to see people. And I’ve gotta start making plans for my trips but I need to sit down and talk it through with some mates which is what I am lacking at the mo. Guys like LP, Dr Luke, AC, Scotty, Steve etc. I’ve got ideas which are pushing me in directions but I need a start off point, a moment of clarity, a push off wall, starter gun. When I went travelling last year again, it was partly on the advice of Scotto who told me I had time and not to worry about my murky thoughts. He was right and damn, that was a trip. The days, weeks and months are moving on here relentessly, money is being earned but the value is empty. I don’t really care about money. I guess because I haven’t a clear aim or anything bar Lonestar to think about.

Anyway…remember that crazy Japanese girl Keiko (if you don’t, click here). As a group, a lot of mates emailed her to see if she was for real. Well I got an answer back from her. I know quite a few who emailed her. I asked her why she liked white guys and her reply was;

They are better doing sex. Are you????? ^_^

What a classic. There was much speculation that she might be a fake but I don’t think so. I can, and other friends can, attest to the stalkerish obsessions of Japanese girls, made even less comprehensible by the cultural and language barriers that exist in Japan.

I’ve made my grand plans for until I leave the UK.

–> Finish my Japanese textbook
–> Finish Crime and Punishment, Ulysses, and Gravity’s Rainbow. Three great books I’ve started but never finished for many reasons.
–> Keep exercising. I feel much better at the moment.
–> Keep the mind active with worthy activity. It make me appear grumpy when I don’t get involved in the office gossip but I just don’t care enough.

I heard a story today from a guy I work with. He lives next to a pub and the other night, around closing time, sat in his living room, he heard a couple leaving the bar and grumbling to each other. The man suddenly, held the women against his window by her neck and said,

“You bore me to tears. Bore bore, bore, bore.”

Is that what life for some or many comes to? Another girl at work told me her life had barely started when she got pregnant. I’d feel despairing and get involved but I fear there are too many with the same story. For many life’s happiness hangs like a thread, the inter-dependency in life partnerships can provide great rewarding and potentially devastating. I’ve seen it my own family. Thinking you were going to get old with someone, for it all to fall apart. Havign the sadness of growing old alone. Then again, i have seen with my own parents the love they have for each other.

I am nearly finished Don DeLillo’s excellent White Noise. A couple love each other deeply but both fear the other dying before them, wondering if and how they could go on. It’s a scary thought which all of us must face sometime. Once the thought is unleashed, where can you go from there. Can you ever avoid it? Maybe I shouldn’t ask but I want to know what people feel about it.

Just flicked on a serious, sombre arts show on the BBC, reviewing Sean Penn’s new fim All the King’s Men. The presenter turns to the first artist to ask his opinion of the film and it’s a dude in a dress. Cool. Funny stuff.

Have a good weekend.

Take care


>Gotta love and hate Wikipedia

>Harry “Arry” Redknapp (born March 2, 1947) is an English former footballer who has had a long career in football management and is the current manager of Portsmouth F.C. of the English Premiership.However, he is best known as a lover of scat sex.

See Arry here

27/10/06 edit: Being wikipedia, the page has been edited now. But that was only a matter of time. Knowledge gets distorted and intertwined with myth constantly at wikipedia. It’s self-perceived history. That’s what wikipedia is about.

>Back off Butch

>Well everyman has his opinion and has a right to express it without harm, Butcher does have a tendency to give his negative views too often or maybe the BBC just listens too much in a desparate grab for viewer’s interest. Sure, we’d like Wenger to be England manager, sure we don’t like McClaren and think he’ll be a failure but when Butcher became qualified after his average stint at Motherwell and his subsequent ‘move up’ to Sydney FC, I must have been travelling and missed his highlights.