Readers who can be bothered to scroll down the page will find an entry from June telling of my heroic endeavours to defend football referees via a letter to The Washington Post. Back in March, I also wrote about the trials of referees like myself dealing with loud-mouthed parents and coaches who love to combine a borderline unhinged psychosis with an ignorance of the game’s laws. You may notice that I never criticised players in all this. That’s because I still step out on to the field to play at weekends, equipped with fading fantasies about the extent of my visibly diminishing footballing capacities. And because, in this role, I can still have the odd problem with a poor referee.
Like yesterday, for example, when I received my first red card in 36 years of playing. I reckon I’ve taken part in maybe 700-800 games without being ordered off the field. I’m overwhelmingly level-headed – if I’m the captain I tend to rush over to a hotspot to calm things down. If I’m not the captain, I’ll stand back with an air of detached superiority, perhaps shaking my head in the manner of one who knows so, so much better.
Monday, September 13, 2010
Friday, September 10, 2010
The last time I wrote about the How To Spend It supplement in Mrs. Pop’s Financial Times, I made a predictable assault on the easy target of high-end luxury goods. Clearly the editors read this blog, as they seem to have stopped aiming the glossy sheet merely at multi-millionaires, and have factored in the ridiculously rich as well. Several items featured in today’s edition will cost you less than four figures (the Gentlemen’s Tonic Mayfair Shaving Set is just £150, for example), and the cost of telling the time is down too – while last December’s featured timepieces showcased a £1.6 million wristwatch from Jaeger-LeCoultre, this month’s Bell & Ross rose gold Power Reserve Watch (on an alligator strap – this watch was hunted) is almost given away at £14,300.
|Help for those burdened by cash|
Friday, September 03, 2010
|Where John Cleese answers the phone|
It was seven o, clock, and she asked if we could get a table at 7.45. No, she was told, you have to phone half an hour before you want your table. We’re about to set out on our bikes, she said. Could you please just put us down for 7.45? It’s not easy to use a cell phone on a bike. No, it has to be half an hour before. She should call back in 15 minutes.
What about 7.40, asked Mrs. Pop, always keen to compromise (except in the odd domestic matter)? No, it has to be 30 minutes. Okay, she said, if it has to be 30 minutes we’ll go for 7.30 and pedal really hard.
Sorry, said the girl, there are no tables free for 7.30. The earliest I can get you a table is 7.45.
Yes, that will do nicely, thanks.