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Monday, 25 June 2012

The Great Escape

Watching the English football team is a great preparation for life. It hardens you to all those many disappointments that beset one's journey through this valley of sorrow.

The missed opportunities in love, work and play are reflected in the missed goals in the penalty shootout. The sense of purposelessness which can infect your life is aptly mirrored in England's midfield play. The sense of helplessness a parent feels watching their child doing a particularly crass thing, is re-enacted in the range of expressions on the England manager's face.

Not only that, England's team holds up a mirror to our nation's endeavours. We haven't won a major title for nearly 50 years, our footballers are paid ludicrous amounts for achieving very little. Our game is in the hands of overseas owners, its fans a seething mass of malcontents, desperate, baying and pleading in turn. Our team is launched on international campaigns, only to return tails between its legs, monstrous sums spent on achieving bugger all.

I could have been talking about the state of our nation.

We are diminished, a small island lashed by storms meteorological and financial, comically believing we are more than we are. It takes an octogenarian floating down the Thames to momentarily revive the nation's sense of itself, and a comic to expose the gnawing sense of privilege that haunts our nation's conscience.

We have the football team we deserve, limited, lacking any sense of direction and bankrupt.


Anonymous said...

Perhaps in future five octogenerians should be sent on to take England's penalties. Minimal run up to the ball and more emphasis on placing it rather than booting it....a bit like Mr Pirlo!

Steve said...

Who needs a psychic pig of fortune telling octopuss? I could have told you it would go to penalties and we'd lose.

Dieter said...

You Englanders should search out boys with German grannies and pick them for your team, eg Werner not Wayne Rooney. Then watch the Teutonic efficiency make you succeed!

Happy 'Arry said...

If I was in the dug out we would have walked it, I tell you. I can walk on water, and the lads would have done likewise. Instead of a Jack the Lad in the dug out, we had an accountant lookalike. Accountants are fine for advising on tax avoidance but not on footie tactics. PS I had that Jimmy Carr in the back of my cab the other day.

Marginalia said...

Dear all, the clear view is that we're generally useless at football.

As for the Germans - tonight will show whether Audi bland is better than Alfa surface shine.

Forward with the Grannies!

'Harry. Did Jimmy give you a big tip or wasn't he too pleased with you tax advice?

Happy 'Arry said...

He said is that three mill in your pocket or are you mightily pleased to see me

Marginalia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marginalia said...

Dear 'arry, he always was one for the cheap laughs.

Dieter said...

I take back what I said above!