IT was Chadwell Heath’s finest export, Jessie J, who once told us: “Forget about the price tag.” (And before you argue: Dudley Moore was from Dagenham.) I’m guessing Jessie must have had a traumatic experience trying to find a cheap carton of orange juice at Tesco. Read the rest of this entry »
EARLIER this season, I watched a Football League game between Team X and Team Y (not their real names, before you go hunting for scarves and replica kits). Team X had a lot of possession, and probably most of the chances. Team Y responded with a combination of physical play, chronic over-acting and attempts to intimidate the referee. The best euphemism to describe Team Y’s performance that day would be “professional” – not least because they won the game. Read the rest of this entry »
A COUPLE of seasons ago, Bury adopted a brown and sky blue halved home shirt to mark their 125th anniversary. (OK, I may not have got the colour descriptions spot on there. I’m not Dulux, you know.) Read the rest of this entry »
DID I ever tell you that I once spent three months working in a call centre where I was compared to the captain of the Titanic on an almost daily basis? (This is a rhetorical question, as I’m going to tell you about it regardless.)
It’s probably best I don’t name the call centre, or the town, or even the country. (It was somewhere on Earth. Even there, I think I’ve said too much.) This call centre took orders and dealt with enquiries for a mail order company that sold the most incredible tat you could possibly imagine: Shoe trees, musical mugs, Boyzone annuals. Oh, and the video/DVD of Titanic. This was the autumn of 1998, and everyone in the country was buying that damn movie. (Not all of them just to make sure Leonardo di Caprio drowned, either.) Read the rest of this entry »
GARY Ablett was conducting a radio interview at the back of St James Park’s main stand, moments after Stockport County had ended a terrible run of results with a 1-0 victory at Exeter.
It was February 2010. County were hurtling towards relegation from League One, and teetering on the brink of extinction, having spent almost a year in administration. On the pitch, they had lost a club record 12 successive league games. Ablett, taking his first steps into management, was gamely struggling with an impossible job.
His dry sense of humour, though, hadn’t deserted him. After the win at Exeter ended a 17-match run without a league victory, a local radio interviewer asked him for his thoughts.
He said: “Football would be a great game if it wasn’t for Saturdays, wouldn’t it? We could enjoy the week and not worry about the weekend.” Read the rest of this entry »
I WON’T say how we met, but it didn’t last long; she was keener than me, my indecision hardened into serious doubts, I called it off, she cried.
We didn’t break all contact immediately, which was a mistake, in hindsight. I got a few angry e-mails and text messages, and avoided answering my home phone for a while. I kept visualising her turning up on my doorstep, sly grin, ready to do something awful, although she never did. Things eventually calmed down, as they always do, except when they don’t. Read the rest of this entry »