Friday, February 20, 2009

Just Like Honey

Call me a naive fool, but I am starting to get excited about the Blues again. It doesn't take much. There is still some disharmony among the fans; I can't remember a manager being as unpopular as McCleish after such a short time in charge. I still think he can do a good job for us and as I keep on saying, all our managers have been shit and I don't know what possesses anyone to think the next one will be any different. Eck has seen where our problems lie and has taken steps to address them. It's still a work in progress, but the signs are encouraging, we are much more positive and it is a good sign for the future. If we go up and he is allowed to sign the type of players he has bought in this season, we should be a pretty fast, fluid side.

I fully expect to have egg all over my face at 5 p.m tomorrow. I should not forget the immutable law: The Bastards Will Always Let You Down.

It's probably a bit late to start recommending Spotify, but I will anyway. If you haven't tried it, or just had a quick look and never went is brilliant. I have listened to all of Alela Dianes oeuvre, loads of Felice Brothers, Rory Gallagher, John Coltrane, Headless Heroes, U Roy and loads more; so you can see the breadth of stuff at your disposal, for free, apart from a very occasional and brief advert. I have currently got the radio set to alternative country, and while it's a bit hit and miss, it's better than Radio 2!

Judging by reactions around the interweb, the English cricket fan has become as puerile and childish as the average football fan: they just cannot tolerate disappointment. The test match just finished was brilliant and the final day was as good as final days get, with every ball being possessed of a profound meaning. England couldn't take the final wicket, so what? It was a magnificent comeback from the previous game and a magnificent sporting occasion. Hats off to the Windies tail.

I read this week that Richie Benaud has retired.We hadn't heard much of him the UK lately anyway, but he is one of the greats and I wish there were a few more like him (and Jimmy Armfield on the football commentaries)...........calm, knowledgeable, wise, astute, not afraid to tell the truth, not given to hyperbole and unafraid of silence. One of the disappointments of the current series is the poor quality of the radio commentary and summarising, specifically, Viv Richards. He may have been a great batsmen but he isn't the most articulate of communicators. He can't say "to", he can only say, "to, to, to", it's the same with "the, the, the"

I wouldn't say it to his face though. I once saw him holding court at Edgbaston after a days play against Somerset. Botham was in the bar, being hugely and impressively gregarious, while Viv held court on the seats outside, on a beautiful Birmingham evening. He was imperious, and there seemed to be an exclusion zone around him, into which no one ventured. His space was his space, and he seemed to need plenty of it.
I recall reading that he offered an Aussie bowler out when he got fed up of his sledging and the sledging stopped immediately. I can't imagine that happening with Ian Bell.

Viv takes on a journalist.
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