Mommie Dearest

The day after we moved into our ancient gaff, a nice man called Richard  from Virgin Media (not the Richard, obviously) installed our all singing, all dancing multimedia techno-wizardry – 30 megabyte fibre-optic broadband, telephone line and high definition TV. The whole compendium was half price for six months and came with free installation, free equipment and free weekend calls. We now have more channels of crap than you can shake a stick at. Currently, I’m being forced to watch wall-to-wall Olympics (Liam’s current obsession). We’ve never had HD TV before. I can see every wrinkle, every blemish, every spot and every blackhead on the faces of the famous – except for Gary Lineker (who surely must have had a nick and lift). No wonder an old bundle of ageing TV presenters decided to hang up their auto-cues and throw in the flannel: there are some things even the thickest slap can’t hide. Now we have free weekend calls, they’ll be no more Sunday Skype calls to mother. Just as well. I could never get the bloody thing to work properly from Turkey anyway and the compulsory weekly check-in was always a painful exercise, invariably ending in complete frustration.

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Rainbow Sporting Heroes

Gareth Thomas Likes Perking the PansiesAs Olympic fever goes into hyperdrive, I was thinking about homophobia in sport, particularly the beautiful game. Even though the likes of David Beckham are in touch with their feminine side and Eric Cantona is prone to writing a poetic line or two, there are no fairies in top flight football, apparently. Why is this, I wonder? Even rugby, the butchest of sports, has the wonderful Gareth Thomas quietly waving his rainbow flag. There was Justin Fashanu a few years back, of course, but his revelation led to excommunication by the soccer establishment, misery and his eventual suicide. It was a shameful episode.

Despite a campaign by UEFA to stamp out homophobia (as well as racism), the footie fraternity still thinks of itself as the last bastion of traditional machismo, both in Blighty and across this soccer-obsessed world. Nowadays, these obscenely overpaid dandies are preened, pressed and waxed to within an inch of their lives. They also drive too fast, drink too much, brawl in public, chase empty-headed bottle blonds with assisted tits and visit prostitutes old enough to be their mothers. Well, not all of them do, but you get my drift.

Imagine, therefore, a startled Gallic nation that witnessed Olivier Giroud grab teammate Mathieu Debuchy’s face and land a big French smacker* full on the lips. Debuchy did not squirm or resist. This heat of the moment intimate encounter occurred just after Giroud scored for France in an international friendly with Germany a few months ago. Shocking, but then, that’s the French for you.

This French kissing malarky seems to be infectious. A similar incident in Mexico caused outrage among the big wigs and hacks. Femexfut (The Mexican Football Association) El Presidente, Alfonso Sabater said:

‘A gay kiss is not a good example for children and vulnerable people. We must censor this behaviour.’

Get the madam!

*2014 Update: There used to be a YouTube video of the French kissers which has since been removed. I wonder why?

 

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Norwich Pride

Sadly, we missed Norwich Pride. As novice Norwichians, we hang our heads in shame. The event was held the day after the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games. The greatest show on Earth or the best show in Town? What’s a boy to do? We chose the former. Sorry. Had we not been nursing a hangover of Olympic proportions, we might have made it to march and mince with the rainbow people. Next year we’ll be there. Promise.

I hear the affair was a great success. Here are some pictures (courtesy of Steve Adams and the Norwich Evening News).

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Thank You, Mitt Romney

We leapt off the train from Norwich at Stratford (the main gateway to the Olympic Games). It was busy but not uncomfortably so. There was no sign of the much anticipated transport gridlock that has dominated the news for months. We jumped on a bus to the penthouse pad overlooking the stadium and took our seats for the biggest show in town. As I had hoped, it was a mesmerising salute to British polish, quirkiness, individuality and diversity – funny, moving, creative, self-deprecating, inclusive, mildly subversive with tongue jammed firmly in cheek. The eccentric cultural cabaret was infused with subtle (and not so subtle) political messages to the great, the good and the incompetent both at home and away. It mattered little to me that much of the humour might have been lost on the globally bemused. It was worth all the money just to get the first lesbian kiss ever broadcast on Saudi TV. After much reticence, all but a few diehard cynics now seem to have risen to the occasion and finally taken the Games to their hearts. There’s a real buzz in the air, a buzz you can feel, taste and see. I think we have Mitt Romney to thank for this. His ungracious remarks about London’s readiness to stage the Games have galvanised opinion. No one likes a bad-mannered, bad-mouthing guest in their house, do they?

I give you one of the many highlights from the show – HM becomes a Bond girl. I hope our German friends weren’t too miffed by the Dambuster’s theme. Naturally, Her Maj was as inscrutable as ever.

Absolutely Fabulous

It doesn’t usually do to go back, to try and relive a moment. Invariably, it leads to bitter disappointment and anti-depressants. Sometimes though, there’s some old magic left in a tired old formula. Such was the Absolutely Fabulous Olympic Special shown tonight on Auntie Beeb. I loved every witty word, every caustic comment, every grotesque caricature and the sound of every sacred cow being slaughtered. Watching deliciously unreconstructed, post-menopausal Patsy light her fag from the Olympic flame was worthy of a sackful of gold medals. Perhaps I am being carried away by Olympic fever but Ab Fab was absolutely fabulous.

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