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Subtitles Are Not TV’s Kite Mark: Not Unless You Want To Sing Along With Simon Cowell And Clive James
Mic Wright’s Remotely Furious.
HOMELAND is fine. Borgen is fine. The Killing was fine. If any of these shows was set in England and broadcast by ITV1, The Guardian would not give one solitary based-out-listlessly-by-Sam-Wollaston toss about them. They are entertaining but they’re not the red hot stuff that TV reviewers want you to believe you are. It’s not philistine to think subtitles are a pain the bum nor that Mel & Sue aren’t charming as hosts of the Great British Bake Off or that Richard “The Hamster” Hammond should grow up.
There is too much received wisdom in television criticism and TV chatter in general. You’re expected to enjoy but disdain The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent, to throw a layer of irony on top to justify those hundreds of hours of Saturday night viewing. I love The X Factor and BGT unreservedly. Susan Boyle’s first BGT audition still makes me cry. It’s the product of emotional manipulation by savvy TV producers but so what? I watch sad films to make me cry, I watch nostalgic films so I can bang on about Pogs or that grim time when people enjoyed the music of Smashmouth.
WHO is speaking truth to power? Nick Cohen writes:
If you listen to artists, writers, academics and journalists, you would think that thousands of them operate in a radical underground. They say the right things. They ‘speak truth to power’, ‘transgress boundaries’, and all the rest of it. But you will have noticed that they are careful only to challenge religions that won’t hurt them (Christianity) and governments that won’t arrest them (democracies).
He goes on to talk of a who by Iranian-born artist Firoozeh Bazrafkan. You might not like her. But you have to admit she’s not easily intimidated. This how she celebrates the Iranian Revolution:
IRON Mike Tyson has admitted in his autobiography that he was on all manner of drugs during some of his fights and even used a fake penis to fool dope testers.
Tyson spoke about all this in his book, Undisputed Truth, which stated that he’d taken ‘blow’ and ‘pot’ before fight. Imagine how good he would’ve been if he wasn’t stoned.
He then revealed how he managed to avoid detection: ‘I had to use my whizzer, which was a fake penis where you put in someone’s clean urine to pass your drug test,’ he said.
Mike also took cocaine and blames that for his press conference brawl with Lennox Lewis, where Tyson bit Lennox’s leg!
Either way, with all that in mind, let us look back at some of Mike Tyson’s finest knock-outs and, in amongst them, you’ll find a little treat, different from the rest.
WANT top speak like a Victorian? James Redding Ware, the pen name of writer Andrew Forrester, documented slang English terms of that perverted period in British history in his book Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase.
“Thousands of words and phrases in existence in 1870 have drifted away, or changed their forms, or been absorbed, while as many have been added or are being added,” he writes in the book’s introduction. “‘Passing English’ ripples from countless sources, forming a river of new language which has its tide and its ebb, while its current brings down new ideas and carries away those that have dribbled out of fashion.”
ROD Stewart and the rest of The Faces played London’s Marquee Club in December of 1970. Ron Wood, Kenny Jones, Ronnie Lane, Ian McLagen never looked better than in this video recorded for German TV “WDR”.
If the camera was any closer, one sniff and you’d be inside one of rock’s greatest noses:
PAUL Dutton, 48, was ejected from his local branch of Asda in Cambridge, after a fellow shopper complained about his attire – a classic formal black suit of the type produced by Hugo Boss in the 1940s.
Unfortunately this suit happened to closely resemble the uniform of Hitler’s notorious SS, and even more unfortunately the resemblance was entirely uncoincidental. Mr Dutton’s “hobby” is Adolf Hitler, you see, and his fascination is such that his living room boasts a painting of himself being decorated by the Fuhrer – a man who once earned an honest living decorating people’s homes as a housepainter.
THE Wallaby spotted hopping around Highgate Cemetery is dead.
The experts caught the marsupial – some say he’s the reincarnation of Karl Marx, TV prankster Jeremy Beadle or murdered KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko.
PEOPLE say that a red card can spoil a decent game of football. Nonsense. It adds a layer of wonderful jeopardy into proceedings and, more to the point, sometimes they’re really very funny.
There have been some mystifying red cards over the years (players getting sent off for mistaken identity or getting three yellows before leaving the pitch) and some have just been brilliant.
With that, let us look at some of the more fun ones.
1. Don’t get a decision going your way? Indulge in some ‘simulation’. That didn’t work? Jab your opponent in the balls, right in front of the referee.
IN case you’re wondering: apparently it is illegal in Missouri to save a toddler from a burning house, and cops will taser you, cuff you and haul you off to jail if you try.
Ryan Miller discovered this early on Halloween morning, when an electrical fire started in the house he shared with his wife and three-year-old stepson. Officers shot Miller with a stun gun as he tried re-entering the burning house to save the little boy. (There’s some dispute over exactly how often Miller got Tased; police say two times while Miller’s mother says three, twice after Miller was already in handcuffs and once after he was already in the police car.)
PRESIDENT Assad of Syria is a cool guy. His wife is a fragrant “rose in the desert“. On Assad’s Instagram account, we get this photo below of the man, the woman and the child who they are neither molesting nor murdering with toxic gases or bullets. Anyone who says they are is a dirty liar.
TITANIC survivors Charlotte ‘Lottie’ Collyer and daughter Marjorie It was on a Wednesday we took the train to Southampton. Some of our friends were at the station to see us go, and some of them saw us off on the boat, I didn’t think there was any boat in the world as big as the Titanic. (named Marjery in one report), 8, had a story to tell of that terrible night. Marjorie’s account of the night was reported in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. She and her mother became famous.
Marjorie’s tale formed part of Charlotte’s story. She had spoken to the San Francisco Call.
I don’t remember very much about the first few days of the voyage. I was a bit seasick, and kept to my cabin mod of the time. But on Sunday, April 14, I was up and about. At dinnertime, I was at my place in the saloon, and enjoyed the meal, though I thought it too heavy and rich. No effort had been spared to serve even to the second cabin passengers on that Sunday the best dinner that money could buy. After I had eaten, I listened to the orchestra for awhile; then, at perhaps nine o’clock, or half-past nine, I went to my cabin. I had just climbed into my berth when a stewardess came in. She was a sweet woman, who had been very kind to me. I take this opportunity to thank her; for I shall never see her again. She went down with the Titanic. “Do you know where we are?” she said pleasantly. “We are in what is called The Devil’s Hole.” “What does that mean?” I asked. “That it is a dangerous pert of the ocean,” she answered. “Many accidents have happened near here. They say that icebergs drift down as far as this. It’s getting to be very cold on deck, so perhaps there’s ice around us now!” She left the cabin, and I soon dropped off to sleep. Her talk about icebergs had not frightened me; but it shows that the crew were awake to the danger. As far as I can tell, we had not slackened our speed in the least. It must have been a little after ten o’clock when my husband came in and woke me up. He sat about and talked to me, for how long I do not know, before he began to make ready to go to bed. And then, the crash!
IT turns out that the way to seduce Ashley Cole is not offer him a deal for a lucrative marriage nor write ‘puke here‘ on your face but to compliment his feet.
Roxanne Jeffers says she pulled the Chelsea FC defender by sayiong she liked his feet. Cole had posted a picture of his feet on the web. The Daily Mail reports: “The model got in touch with Ashley when she commented on how ‘cute’ his feet were after he posted a snap of them on Instagram. The Chelsea and England defender was so flattered he invited the 24-year-old beauty to the £3.5million home he once shared with Cheryl.”
That’s how much Ashley likes his feet.
WE name the mystery men.
The campaign to put Jane Austen on English banknotes appears to have achieved a somewhat hollow victory, if responses to the proposed portrait are anything to go by.
Austen biographer Dr Paula Byrne describes the proposed picture as resembling a doll, and making Jane appear “dim-witted”. She even goes so far as to compere it to “a Katie Price makeover”.
However, Elizabeth Proudman of the Jane Austen Society begs to differ. While conceding that the eyes are too big, and the face is ‘prettified’ she appears happy with the overall appearance – including the bonnet, which she says Austen always wore.
SO. How has the Sun reported the news that former News of the World editor was shagging former Sun and News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks when they worked together, as is alleged? Well, it leads with news of a trial. Yeah, Brooklyn Beckham has had a trial for Manchester United: It’s a “TRIAL SENSATION“.
In other news you won’t read in the Sun:
RANDY ANDY’S AFFAIR WITH EASTENDERS’ STAR’S GINGA NINJA
BONKING BROOKS’ SECRET AFFAIR
ANDY COULSON ATE MY ‘HAMSTER’
UP YOURS, HER INDOORS
WOULD THE LAST PERSON TO LEAVE THE OFFICE PLEASE DIM THE LIGHTS
NOTHING TO CHANGE HERE. LEAVE AS IS.
AT LEAST THEY’RE NOT GAY
Where’s the News of the World when you need it?
IN 1974, David Bowie was at a low ebb. The 1975 BBC film Cracked Actor recorded the singer on his 1974 Diamond Dogs Tour. The then 27-year-old Alan Yentob’s Omnibus film showed Bowie in the raw. In 1987, Bowie would say of the BBC film:
“I was so blocked … so stoned … It’s quite a casualty case, isn’t it. I’m amazed I came out of that period, honest. When I see that now I cannot believe I survived it. I was so close to really throwing myself away physically, completely.”
FOOTBALLERS Forever Associated With Certain Items Of Food
“Mark Bosnich was a terrible professional,” claims Sir Alex Ferguson in his autobiography, which was launched in a small room above a Salford pub last week, to mass indifference.
“We played down at Wimbledon and Bosnich was tucking into everything: sandwiches, soups, steaks. He was going through the menu. I told him, ‘For Christ’s sake, Mark, we’ve got the weight off you. Why are you tucking into all that stuff?’ We arrived back in Manchester, and Mark was on mobile phone to a Chinese restaurant to order a takeaway.”
And with these words, Mark ‘Sniffer’ Bosnich achieves membership of the exclusive Footballers Forever Associated With Certain Items Of Food Club.
There could even have been another, had Fergie revealed the identity of the culprit to blame for ‘Pizzagate’, when a row between himself and Arsene Wenger in 2004 culminated in carb carnage. “The next thing I knew, I had pizza all over me,” recalls the red-faced recently-retired ruler of Old Trafford. He says he did not see who threw it, but that Cesc Fabregas has been suggested to him. And that’s good enough for us, so Cesc is hereby inducted, along with his missile of choice.
Arsene Wenger remained typically inscrutable this week: “I don’t know about food throwing. I did not see if something was thrown – you’ll have to ask someone else, because I don’t know.”
When Cesc arrives, he will find another Arsenal old boy awaiting him…
In 1986, ‘Champagne’ Charlie was arrested outside the Confusion Bar in Ibiza, for an unusual twist on the usual footballers’ fracas. Scottish holidaymaker Lori McElroy alleged that Nicholas stole a chip from her, and then broke her jaw in the ensuing argument. Nicholas was found guilty but continued to deny any wrongdoing.
Chips would haunt Charlie years later, when working as a pundit for Sky. Anchorman Jim White, presumably assuming his mic was switched off, referred to the Celtic fans’ chorus of The Fields of Athenrye with a reference to the Irish potato famine.
“Oh here we go again, the tottie famine,” said Jim.
“Aye, and they’re all eating chips while singing this,” replied Nicholas, to the displeasure of the Bhoys’ worldwide army of millions.
Roast dinner with all the trimmings
Terry Venables remembers breaking into the Chelsea team as a youngster and playing alongside the legendary Jimmy Greaves. Greavsie was only three years older than Terry, yet he was already a superstar, and would soon move to AC Milan. He lived near Venables, and would give him a lift to matches. The first time this happened, Jim explained that he usually stopped for lunch at a café, so they went in and Venables – already at the vanguard of modern practices – ordered steamed chicken. He was shocked to see Greaves polish off a massive plate of roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, veg, and roast AND mashed potatoes. This he followed up with a large bowl of stodge and custard. “I always have this,” he said. Venables says Greaves proceeded to score a hatful of goals that afternoon. But then, he usually did.
Speaking of dinners, an honoury mention must also go to erstwhile Orient manager John ‘bring yer fu*king dinner’ Sitton, for his legendary televised half-time rant…
Martin Jol’s Tottenham side of 2005-06 will be remembered for their valiant but ultimately unsuccessful assault on the final Champions League spot. To make it worse, it was arch-rivals West Ham who ruined their party by beating them 2-1 on the final day. And to put the tin lid on it, it was Arsenal who pipped them to fourth.
The defeat was blamed squarely upon a lasagna which had been served to the players at the London Marriott in West India Quay, where the players aere staying before the game. Ten players went down with a mystery illness, assumed to be food poisoning, although the hotel was cleared of any wrongdoing.
David Beckham, as reported here recently, is a lifelong pie and mash fan, and even went to the lengths of taking the Spurs players and backroom staff to lunch at a local emporium during his brief stint training at the north London club.
But when it comes to meat-filled be-crusted comestibles, one man is synonymous: chunky Mick Quinn, whose candid autobiography is rhetorically entitled Who Ate All The Pies?
The scouse goal-machine once picked up a pie that was thrown at him from the crowd and ate it, to the amusement of all. He has been known to repeat the story from time to time in the course of his broadcasting duties.
Paul Gascoigne’s love of the ‘iconic’ chocolate brick was well known, and when he turned out for Spurs against his former club Newcastle United the Toon fans bombarded him with said confectionary. Whereupon Gazza ‘did a Quinny’ and chomped enthusiastically.
Mention ‘testicles and football’ and the connection is obvious: Wimbledon FC – although this is nothing to do with Gazza’s bollocks…
…and everything to do with the defunct club’s owner Sam Hammam, who introduced the novel forfeit of eating sheep’s gonads as part of the ‘Crazy Gang’ disciplinary code.
It would be easy to just post a picture of Roy Keane, who indirectly coined the phrase “prawn sandwich brigade” during a mini-rant about Manchester United’s gentrified supporters.
Yet Keano’s comments are trumped by events at Grimsby, where Town’s Ivano Bonetti was supposedly injured when manager Brian Laws threw chicken wings at him. The sandwich-based truth is slightly different.
Laws says that Bonetti hurled sandwiches – and a punch – at him, and that he merely retaliated in kind: “I’ve no idea where the chicken leg or wing part of the story came from! It almost put a bit of humour to it, but we felt it was best to leave things be and put things right later on. That incident gets brought up quite a lot and people laugh at it now – and I do as well – but at the time it wasn’t very funny or nice to be involved in. It was an incident which unfortunately spilled out into the press and all hell broke loose at the time.”
The restaurant of choice for footballers seeking a pre-brawl snack, as patronised by Lee Bowyer (pictured here fighting with team-mate Kieran Dyer). Bowyer was convicted of affray at the Isle of Dogs branch…
And Joey Barton, back home in Liverpool…
Charlton Athletic keeper Charlie Wright is fondly remembered for his tendency to wander behind his goal and chat with supporters. Legend has it that once, while accepting an orange from a fan, the opponents scored.
Step up, Dave Beasant. If you can, that is.
Beasant missed two months of the 1993-94 season after knocking over a jar of salad cream which fell onto his foot, causing serious injury. Some say it was mayonnaise, but unfashionable salad cream took the rap.
Eternal spring chicken Gordon Strachan (pictured here with the world’s largest banana split) famously lives on a diet of the curvy peely fruit. “Gordon couldn’t spell banana when he was 20,” says former team-mate Alex McLeish “He ate pork pies then. But we had a teetotal right-back called Stuart Kennedy who brought in books about the diets of Ivan Lendl and Martina Navratilova. That’s when we started good eating habits.”
Unfortunately, the enduring image of footballers and bananas is less savoury. John Barnes was famously snapped back-heeling a banana thrown at him by the Goodison faithful in 1988.
“I don’t remember doing that,” he said later. “I mean the picture is there but bananas back then were common. The reason it all came to the fore is because I was playing for a high-profile club like Liverpool. For six years before, that happened every week, but because it was a small club it wasn’t highlighted. In terms of me being angry and wanting to fight people in the stands though, it never happened, I consider those people to be ignorant, so how could they affect any part of life or any part of my demeanour.”
HELL Houses will scare you kids into following the ways of Chris. They can also make you straight.
Brian Kirk told us:
“Part of salvation is being afraid of going to hell,” says the youth pastor at Trinity Church Assemblies of God in Cedar Hill, Texas. As depicted in the excellent documentary Hell House, each Halloween season Trinity Church hosts an alternative to the traditional haunted house. Instead of vampires and werewolves, guests are treated to scenes such as a young girl having an abortion, a gay man suffering from AIDS, a teen dying in an auto accident who failed to give his life to Christ. In each scenario, these presumed sinners are tormented by actors dressed as demons. The implication, none too subtle, is that each deserves both their suffering and their one-way ticket to damnation. The gay man, molested by his uncle as a child, chose to have sex and contract HIV. The teen girl chose to get drugged at a rave, raped, and become pregnant. The boy in the car wreck chose hell because he refused to listen to his parents’ religious teachings. The message of these hell houses is that the same fate awaits us all. But wait! There’s hope. These terror tours usually end with a glimpse of heaven and the opportunity to give one’s life to Jesus.
MADELEINE McCann: Anorak’s at-a-glance look at the story in the news.
Image above: Undated image issued by the Metropolitan Police, as part of the investigations into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007, the original sketch (left) that a person made at the time together with a Met Police photo of the British holidaymaker (right) who they have spoken to and is seen here wearing the clothes he believes he may have been wearing that evening, This is the person police believe they have identified as the man who was seen by Jane Tanner carrying a child at about 21.15 near the apartment G5A.
The Sunday Times has a scoop:
Madeleine clues hidden for 5 years
The new prime suspect was first singled out by detectives in 2008. Their findings were suppressed. Insight reports
After Pepper Spray Cop University of California Welcomes TSA Groper Janet Napolitano To Molest Students
WHAT’S the monetary value of suffering? In California, they calculate it like this: the suffering you experience when a bored yet out-of-control cop pepper-sprays your face at point-blank range is worth eight thousand dollars less than the suffering said poor put-upon cop feels once he gets a reputation as the type who pepper-sprays harmless people in the face.
Seriously. Remember John “Pepper Spray” Pike? He’s the ex-Marine and former University of California at Davis policeman who became an Internet meme back in 2011, after he was recorded calmly walking down a line of student protesters sitting on a sidewalk pepper-spraying each one in the face.
MARIA, the gypsy girl found living on a Greek Roma camp, was not abducted. Sasha Ruseva, 38, and Atlan Rusev, 37, are her parents. Sasha is a Roma gypsy. The police have arrested her and Atlan, just as they arrested her adopted parents Hristos Salis, 39, and Eleftheria Dimopoulou, 40. Sasha and Atlan were pinched in the Bulgarian town of Nikolaevo.
Ms Ruseva says she fell pregnant in Greece. She had no money:
“I intended to go back and take my child home, but meanwhile I gave birth to two more kids so I was not able to go back.”
See her other children beklow.
So. The gypsies never did steal Maria, the blonde whose face was flashed around the world. The gypsies never did steal that child in Dublin, either. And there is not a shred of evidence that gypsies kidnapped Ben Needham or Madeleine McCann.
Time, then, to have a look at what the British Press said about blonde Maria:
Revealed: The rundown home where the four-year-old ‘Greek Maddie’ lived with her gypsy ‘abductors’
Daily Star: Maria was Our Maddie:
His mother Kerry Needham, 41, said: “The authorities in Greece always told us, ‘Gipsies don’t steal babies’. Now we know they do. We are very optimistic this new information may help us find Ben.”
The Times told its readers:
The possibility of Gypsy involvement has been investigated in the abduction of two blonde-haired British children — Madeleine McCann in Portugal and Ben Needham in Greece.
Maria was seen dancing in a video. She was like a dancing bear, they said. She was the blonde angel, they said. The caring Mirror topped the chilling video with an advert for Gummy Bears:
Ian Murphy told Sun readers:
THE little girl rescued from a gypsy camp dances for her captors in this disturbing video handed to cops.
Lest you think the video of a blonde kid dancing was very ordinary, Murphy told us that what we were seeing was awful:
In the 29-second clip she twirls in circles in the middle of a sunny yard as a dark-haired woman watches. When the tot falters and stops the woman pushes her back into the centre of the screen and she starts again.
Those dark-haired demons. Never did trust them. Stick with Aryans, we say.
The Daily Mail had inverted commas:
First pictures of gypsy couple ‘who snatched Maria’ as they appear in court accused of abduction and facing up to 20 years in prison
Maria had “secrets“:
The Sun had more on that rescue:
THE mystery blonde girl rescued from a gypsy camp sits with the couple who posed as her parents for years.
Fair-haired Madeleine, then nearly four, went missing from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, in May 2007. Paedophile Raymond Helwett — who lived in the area at the time but died in 2010 — insisted she had been “stolen to order” by gypsies.
Blond Ben vanished on the Greek island of Kos in 1991, aged just 21 months. Five years later a local convict claimed he saw a child matching his description in the Farsala camp where Maria was found — and said gypsies told him the boy came from Kos.
That would be Helwett who never did confess to anything.
The Express then spotted Our Maddie with the gypsies:
Should they now give up hope?
Hell, no. The Star said there were 10 More Maddies:
A child living with Roma gypsies in Ireland is seized.
The Star saw – yep – you know who:
This Irish child underwent DNA tests to establish her identity and links to her family. After a few chemical experiments and State-sanctioned kidnapping, the child was in the care of the Irish state. What could go wrong? (She is now back home with her parents.)
Then the Express spotted Maddie:
The Mirror went further. It talked of an “ABDUCTION PANIC”.
The Sun had news on Maria:
Is this Maria? Missing US toddler link to ‘blonde angel’
Ws asked: These not-all-that-wealthy people nick your kids and then at no expense spared ship them to camps in Europe.
And know we know.
Still, no harm done. It was only the gypsies who got accused of running a global child-stealing racket – and no-one likes them, anyhow…
Mic Wright’s Remotely Furious: David Frost Is Dead And Peter Cook Won’t Save Leigh Francis From Drowning
“PETER never had any regrets in his life…the only regret he regularly voiced was that, at the house we all shared in Fairfield, Connecticut in 1963, he’d saved David Frost from drowning…”
– Alan Bennett in Some Interesting Facts About Peter Cook.
Peter Cook did David Frost no favours. Their rivalry was as bitter as vinegar but the potency mostly came from Cook’s side. He despised Sir David for his buddying up to the establishment and for what he perceived as Frost’s piggybacking on the talents of he and his Beyond The Fringe colleague’s work. Beyond The… made satire bite again but it was Frost who sold the concept to the commercial side of television, steering That Was The Week That Was to the centre of the nation’s heart. His story was at the heart of the best documentary on television last week, Sir David Frost: That Was The Life That Was.
IF you missed last week’s “mad gunman terrorizes American schoolchildren” news story, this time out of North Carolina, don’t feel bad; these days they’re common enough that it’s not reasonable to expect any one person can keep up with them all.
Still, last week’s story was notable for two reasons: One, nobody actually got shot; and two, the gunman was on the school’s payroll. Seriously: Administrators at Eastern Wayne Middle School later sent parents a letter explaining that they sent a masked gunman to various sixth-grade classrooms as an “enrichment lesson on exhibiting good citizenship and observing your surroundings.”